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Archive for October 7th, 2020

Wray Pledges in Social Media Video to Keep Elections ‘Fair And Free,’ Contradicts Trump

FBI Director Christopher Wray

By Steve Neavling

In a nine-minute video posted on social media Tuesday, FBI Director Christopher Wray and top national security officials contradicted President Trump’s repeated and baseless narratives about widespread election fraud. 

“Next month we will exercise one of our most cherished rights and a foundation of our democracy – the right to vote in a free and fair election,” Wray said. “Rest assured that the security of the election and safeguarding your vote is and will continue to be one of our highest priorities.”

Christopher Krebs, director of cyber security and infrastructure security agency, added: “My confidence in the security of your vote has never been higher.”

Wray’s remarks come less than two weeks after he told a Senate committee that the bureau has no evidence of large-scale voter fraud. In testimony before a House committee in mid-September, Wray said Russia continues to be “very active” in meddling with the presidential election, primarily to “denigrate” Democratic nominee Joe Biden.

Trump criticized Wray’s testimony a day later. 

“But Chris, you don’t see any activity from China, even though it is a FAR greater threat than Russia, Russia, Russia,” Trump tweeted. “They will both, plus others, be able to interfere in our 2020 Election with our totally vulnerable Unsolicited (Counterfeit?) Ballot Scam.”

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows also assailed Wray, saying the FBI director “has a hard time finding emails in his own FBI.”

Last Week, Daily Beast reported that Trump, if reelected, plans to replace Wray.

Wray is holding a news conference “on a matter of national security” at 11 a.m. today, fueling all kinds of speculation. Also attending the press conference are Assistant Attorney General John C. Demers, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia G. Zachary Terwilliger, and Acting Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI Washington Field Office James A. Dawson. No further details were available. 

Sessions, Rosenstein Were ‘Driving Force’ Behind Trump’s Child Separation Policy

A detention center, via CBP.

By Steve Neavling

In a May 2018 call with U.S. attorneys along the border with Mexico, then-Attorney General Jeff Session was blunt about what President Trump wanted. 

“We need to take away children,” Sessions told the five prosecutors, referring to Trump’s “zero tolerance” family separation policy, according to an investigation by the Justice Department’s inspector general, first reported by The New York Times.

In a second call about a week later, then-Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein told prosecutors that age was not a factor and that they should not have dropped two cases because the parents had children who were barely more than infants.

Sessions and Rosenstein were a “driving force” behind the controversial policy that led to the separation of thousands of families, despite their past attempts to distance themselves, according to a draft report by Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz.

“The department’s single-minded focus on increasing prosecutions came at the expense of careful and effective implementation of the policy, especially with regard to prosecution of family-unit adults and the resulting child separations,” the draft report said.

In a statement to the Times, a DOJ spokesperson denied the conclusions reached in the Horowitz report, and Rosenstein said he never directed prosecutors to pursue cases they objected to. 

“If any United States attorney ever charged a defendant they did not personally believe warranted prosecution, they violated their oath of office,” Mr. Rosenstein said in a statement. “I never ordered anyone to prosecute a case.”