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Tag: Hillary Clinton

Durham’s Trump-Russia Probe Secures Indictment Against Clinton Attorney

U.S. Attorney John Durham. Photo: DOJ

By Steve Neavling

A prominent cybersecurity attorney who represented Hillary Clinton during the 2016 presidential election has been charged with lying to the FBI. 

A grand jury indicted Michael Sussmann Thursday as part of Justice Department special counsel John Durham’s examination of the origins of the federal investigation into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia, The Washington Post reports.

According to prosecutors, Sussmann lied to the FBI in September 2016 by falsely saying he was not representing Clinton’s campaign. At the time, Sussmann told the FBI that cybersecurity researchers were concerned about possible ties between Russia and the Trump organization. 

The false statement “deprived the FBI of information that might have permitted it to more fully assess and uncover the origins of the relevant data and technical analysis, including the identities and motivations of Sussmann’s clients,” the indictment states. 

Sussmann’s lawyers called the prosecution “baseless and politically-inspired.”

“The Special Counsel appears to be using this indictment to advance a conspiracy theory he has chosen not to actually charge,” attorneys Sean Berkowitz and Michael Bosworth said in a statement. “This case represents the opposite of everything the Department of Justice is supposed to stand for.”

Sussmann is the second person to be charged as part of Durham’s two-and-a-half-year investigation.  

IG Investigation Found No Evidence of FBI Agents Leaking Information Prior to 2016 Presidential Election

By Steve Neavling

A Justice Department inspector general’s investigation was unable to identify who in the FBI leaked information to the media or Rudolph Giuliani prior to the 2016 presidential election. 

But according to the new 10-page report from Inspector General Michael Horowitz, more than 50 FBI officials were in contact with reporters who wrote about investigations before the election.

The impetus of the internal probe was the discovery that details of the FBI investigations into Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump’s campaign were leaked to the media. 

Horowitz noted that it was difficult to identify the leakers because he did not have subpoena power and that too many agents had contact with reporters. He noted there was “a cultural attitude at the FBI that was far too permissive of unauthorized media contacts in 2016.”

Giuliani previously claimed he had inside information about the Clinton investigation. But according to the report, Giuliani walked back his claims, saying he did not talk to active FBI agents and “had no foreknowledge” of then-FBI Director James Comey’s public revelation just before the election that the bureau had reopened the investigation into Clinton’s use of a personal email account. 

Trump Slammed Comey for ‘Erratic’ Behavior in Previously Unseen Letter

Former FBI Director James Comey.

By Steve Neavling

Just days before President Trump fired James Comey in May 2017, he assailed his FBI director for “erratic” and “self-indulgent” conduct in a four-page letter that was never sent because White House lawyers advised against it. 

The letter was finally made public Monday after ABC News received a copy of its contents.

“Your conduct has grown unpredictable and even erratic – including rambling and self-indulgent public performances that have baffled experts, citizens and law enforcement professionals alike – making it impossible for you to effectively lead this agency,” Trump wrote to Comey.

The letter assailed Comey for “spen[ding] too much time cultivating a public image, and not enough time getting your own house in order.”

About half the letter addressed Comey’s handling of the FBI’s investigation of Hillary Clinton’s private email server. That included Comey’s congressional testimony shortly before the letter was penned. In the letter, Trump called the testimony “another media circus full of unprofessional conjecture, bizarre legal theories, and irresponsible speculation.”

The letter then falsely claimed that Comey’s “strange legal decisions and contradictory public statements” had “sowed confusion” and inspired “a near-rebellion by many rank-and-file agents” within the FBI.

The letter also chided Comey’s “failure” to prevent “rampant leaking. 

“You’ve shown a total inability to control leaks, both within and outside the agency. As a result, intelligence — real and fake – has been weaponized into an instrument of partisan warfare,” the letter said.

Trump concluded, “America needs an FBI director who inspires confidence across all layers of government, and who the public believes to be fair, impartial and beyond reproach.”

Comey Celebrates Anniversary of 19th Amendment Sporting an ‘Elect More Women’ T-Shirt. Clinton Wasn’t Amused

Former FBI Director James Comey

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

On the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment on Tuesday, former FBI Director James Comey sported a T-shirt that read “Elect More Women.”

“#19th Amendment is an important anniversary but the vote is not enough,” Comey tweeted. “We need more women in office. VP and Virginia governor are good next steps.”

The tweet received a variety of responses. Hillary Clinton responded with a GIF of herself smirking.

Some political observers believe Clinton would have won the 2016 presidential election if Comey hadn’t decided to notify Congress that the FBI had reopened the case of her use of a private computer just 11 days before the election.

Comey has defended his decision, but said he felt “mildly nauseous” that he may have affected the outcome of the election.

Comey Acknowledges His Decisions During 2016 Presidential Election ‘Hurt the FBI’

James Comey via FBI.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Former FBI Director James Comey acknowledged his handling of investigations into presidential candidates Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton in 2016 “hurt the FBI,” but defended his tenure.

Speaking at a Harvard Institute of Politics forum Monday night, Comey spoke frankly about the dilemma he faced, saying he tried to make the best decisions in a difficult time.

“Decisions that I made hurt the FBI — and that’s important,” Comey said, The Harvard Crimson wrote. “I still believe if I had chosen the other door, I would’ve hurt the FBI worse. But there’s no doubt, I knew we were spending the FBI’s credibility.”

Many political observers criticized Comey for publicly announcing the FBI had reopened an investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server less than two weeks before the election. Clinton also said Comey’s announcement contributed to her loss.

When asked by an audience member if he would apologize to Clinton, Comey said he wouldn’t.

“If you really understand the position we were in — that I was in — on October 28, you walk away saying, ‘Oh my god, that was a very hard decision,’” Comey said. “So I’d want her to understand that.”

Former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe Won’t Face Charges, DOJ Says

Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, via FBI.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe won’t face charges following allegations that he lied to investigators about a media leak.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office alerted McCabe’s attorneys in a letter Friday that “based on the totality of the circumstances and all of the information known to the Government at the time, we consider the matter closed,” USA Today reports.

McCabe told CNN, where he is now a contributor, that he’s relieved the case has been dropped.

“It’s been so unbelievably tense and just such an incredible pressure on all of us,” McCabe said. “We’re all very, very happy. I’m just so glad my kids don’t have to live with this anymore.”

McCabe was accused of misleading investigators about leaking information about the Clinton Foundation probe to the media in the final weeks of the 2016 presidential election.

In August, McCabe filed a lawsuit against the Justice Department after he was fired, saying he was terminated at the behest of Trump’s “unlawful whims.”

FBI: Militia That Stopped Migrants at Border Was Training to kill Obama, Clinton and Soros

Larry Mitchell Hopkins

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The leader of an armed, right-wing militia that was stopping migrants at the southern border was “training” his group to assassinate Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and George Soros, an FBI agent said in court papers.

Larry Mitchell Hopkins, 69, was arrested in New Mexico, where the United Constitutional Patriots is based, and charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm.

The UCP boasted about detaining about 6,500 migrants in New Mexico in the past two months.

FBI Special Agent David S. Gabriel said in an affidavit that the FBI was alerted to Hopkins’ suspicious activities following reports in October 2017 of “alleged militia extremist activity,” the New York Times reports.

A month later, two FBI agents entered Hopkins’ home with his consent and found 10 firearms. Hopkins insisted the guns belonged to his common-law wife, Fay Sanders Murphy.

In the affidavit, the FBI said the UCP “were training to assassinate George Soros, Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama because of these individuals’ support of Antifa,” a left-wing activist group that has clashed, sometimes violently, with right-wing groups across the country. No more details were provided.

What remains unclear is why the FBI waited so long to arrest Hopkins after finding the guns. The FBI concluded at the time that the possession of weapons was illegal because Hopkins was a felon.

“My question is, why now?” Hopkins’ attorney, Kelly O’Connell, asked about the arrest.

Hopkins, who has a long rap sheet, faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted.

O’Connell acknowledged he’s “not a militia specialist,” but said Hopkins and other members of the armed group “believe they are helping to enforce the laws of America on immigration.”

MSNBC Grills Andrew McCabe About 3-Week Delay in Weiner-Clinton Emails

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

MSNBC’s Ari Melber grilled  former acting director of the FBI Andrew McCabe over the FBI’s three-week delay between discovering Hillary Clinton emails on Anthony Weiner’s laptop and the announcement of their discovery to the public.

McCabe tells MSNBC the three-week delay was not ideal, but it was an “acceptable outcome.”

He also says that it is “undeniable” that the FBI’s actions in the Clinton email investigation, particularly the October 28th letter to Congress, impacted the 2016 election.