A former federal prosecutor has unleashed on the FBI for its machinations that targeted 2016 presidential candidate – and then President – Donald Trump.
A recent poll showed about as many Americans distrust the bureau as trust it, and that’s after it worked hand-in-glove with Democrats during 2016 to create the now-debunked Russiagate conspiracy theory against him.
And then, of course, there’s the recent armed FBI raid on Trump’s home in Palm Beach, Florida, in a dispute over records.
In the New York Post, former federal prosecutor Andrew C. McCarthy pointed out that special counsel John Durham, who was assigned to investigate the conspiracy theory launched against Trump, is “in the home stretch.”
He explained the grand jury has wrapped up, “apparently with no new indictments on the horizon,” and a final report is anticipated by the end of the year.
The one trial pending is for Igor Danchenko, the main source for the discredited Steele dossier used by the Hillary Clinton campaign against Trump.
“We now know that the so-called dossier compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele was a Clinton campaign production. It is one of the great dirty tricks in modern political history: The 2016 Democratic presidential campaign colluded with the incumbent Democratic administration’s law enforcement and intelligence apparatus to portray their partisan opposition, Donald Trump, as a Kremlin mole, then made the smear stick to the point of forcing Trump to govern for over two years under the cloud of a special-counsel investigation,” McCarthy noted.
The FBI submitted false testimony to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to get permission to spy on Trump’s campaign, based on Steele’s work, while Danchenko not only was suspected at the time he provided his theories to Steele of having connections to Russia, he was in the pay of the FBI at the time.
“If you’re keeping score, that would be throughout (a) most of the FISC-authorized surveillance; (b) the Mueller investigation, which somehow failed to detect — or at least to report — that Danchenko misled the bureau; and (c) Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s investigations of the FBI’s misconduct in the Trump investigation — in the reports of which there is no indication that Horowitz was told Danchenko was on the bureau payroll and available to be interviewed.”
And there’s more, he said. “Although Danchenko was the most important source for Steele’s explosive allegations against Trump, the FBI did not interview him before using Steele’s dossier in its first two sworn surveillance applications, in October 2016 and January 2017. When the bureau finally got around to questioning Danchenko — because it hadn’t been able to corroborate Steele’s claims despite relying on them in court — it learned that Steele appeared to have exaggerated and possibly fabricated rumors and innuendo about Trump that Danchenko was said to have passed along.”
But the FBI didn’t, even then, alert FISC judges there were reasons to disbelieve Steele’s claims.
“Durham’s investigation indicates that Danchenko lied to the FBI multiple times, falsehoods that should have been easy for the nation’s flagship federal investigative agency to run down. Yet they kept him on board, kept paying him,” McCarthy cited.
And it even, if possible, gets worse.
“While the bureau used inane, unverified information from Steele and Danchenko to suggest to a court that the president of the United States might be a Russian asset, the FBI had intelligence indicating that Danchenko himself might have been a Russian asset,” he aid.
Finally, why was the investigation into Danchenko closed?
“Because ‘the FBI incorrectly believed that [Danchenko] had left the country,'” Durham explains.
The prosecutions, McCarthy suggested, though, are “secondary.”
“What role did the FBI, whether by misfeasance or malfeasance, play in the Clinton campaign’s project to paint Trump as a clandestine agent of the Kremlin? For now, we have to hope that Durham’s final report will answer that question,” he said.