Day 3 after Comey’s Firing

Trump’s very short notice on the firing, left many thinking the Sessions/ Rosenstein letters from the Dept of Justice was the pretense, rather than the reason for Comey’s firing.

The leaks from the White House are taken far more seriously than Trump’s notice, because they make sense.  Comey wasn’t political.  He was excessively truthful, experienced  and articulate.  These were not redeeming qualities in the mind of the President.

Why are the two letters from the Department of Justice considerable laughable?   Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein’s letter states two reasons for firing Comey all stemming from his July 5, 2016 press conference.  First was that he usurped his authority by the public announcement clearing Clinton of criminal wrongdoing.   Didn’t stop Trump,  fellow Republicans in Congress, and a half dozen commentators on Fox News from slamming Clinton and calling her a crook for the next 5 months.  In fact, Trump was attacking AG Loretta Lynch for her meeting with Bill Clinton on her plane.  Trump  wanted   to show the American people, that both the FBI and  DOJ could not be trusted for a fair evaluation of the Clinton investigation.

Rosenstein did not say that Comey broke any rule or law, only a tradition not to comment on cases until there is a review by the Justice Department.  Comey told the Senate Committee that he decided to come public after there were very unique circumstances. His decision was  related to  concern for the public’s perception of the DOJ’s impartiality.

That public perception of FBI/DOJ  cover up  was created and promoted by  Trump, and many Republicans in Congress.   Many in Congress were calling for an independent Special Investigator which would delay the conclusions of the investigation for months.  FBI/DOJ cover up  went in high gear on June 30, 2016  with the chance meeting between Lynch and Bill Clinton, on a Lynch’s private plane.  Trump accused AG Loretta Lynch of lying when she said they just talked about golf, grandchildren and other pleasantries.  He said it was BS and it was really about the email investigation.

Clinton/ Lynch Chance Meeting /  CNN  Comments

 

Now,  the second of Rosenstein’s reasons is really an over the top, piece of absurdity, only a lawyer could make.   He attacks  Comey’s derogatory comments about Hillary Clinton.  Under a normal environment, the FBI must be very careful of what is said.    However, this was hardly a normal environment, as the public was being informed every time they turned on television, that Hillary was either completely innocent or totally guilty of criminal activity.

It was great to have the FBI Director Comey at the end of his investigation to publically state to the public what exactly the FBI had discovered and had not discovered.   To do less, would have been concealment of facts to the public.  Either Clinton or Trump was going to be President, and had Comey delayed what had been finally concluded, even for one day,  would have given the public the impression of a cover up.

Of course, the real benefactor of Attorney’s derogatory  comment, was candidate Trump, who for the next six months would lamblast Clinton for her extremely reckless handling of the emails.  It is laughable that Trump would fire an FBI Directory, who at least in this aspect, helped him immensely become elected.

Comey had two messages for the American public in July 5, 2016.  The first was that Clinton was wrong in setting up an independent server for her email, and second, this activity was not at the level  of wrong doing that would be considered criminal.   The Department of Justice could have overruled Comey’s conclusion.  In fact, the DOJ has the FBI file, and they could always press charges.

So, forget this Sessions/ Rosenstein letter.    Trump never made much of it.    Comey was too straight forward, too honest, too articulate and too accurate.  No marketing skills whatsoever.  That’s what I liked about Comey.

Now,  Trump is searching for that one individual with less integrity, and more loyalty, and will still be approved by the Senate as Director of the FBI.  Good luck!

The firing  was, and still is about the Russian investigation.

Stay tuned,

Dave

 

 

 

 

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And Pence is just as bad on pushing email fictions

From factcheck.org:

In an Oct. 30 interview on “Fox News Sunday,” Pence said that “Hillary Clinton continues to refuse to turn over some 33,000 e-mails.” But, as we said earlier, Clinton’s non-work-related emails were deleted more than a year ago, so Clinton doesn’t have them to turn over. As we have previously written, Clinton’s office disclosed on March 10, 2015, that she gave the State Department 30,490 work-related emails on Dec. 5, 2014, and “chose not to keep” 31,830 emails she deemed “personal.” “We went through a thorough process to identify all of my work-related emails and deliver them to the State Department,” Clinton said at a press conference on March 10, 2015. “At the end, I chose not to keep my private personal emails.”

The 31,830 personal emails were deleted “sometime between March 25-31, 2015,” according to the FBI notes of its investigation. As we said earlier, the emails were deleted by a PRN employee about three weeks after Clinton received a congressional subpoena on March 4, 2015. So Clinton is “not continuing to refuse to turn over some 33,000 e-mails,” as Pence claimed. Because they were deleted by PRN (private computer company), she doesn’t have them to release.

PRN stands for Platte River Network.   So, these accusations that Hillary Clinton either refused to turn over emails or ordered them destroyed has been investigated and found to be false.   Time for Republicans to move on.

Fact check is a non-partisan organization, is a project from the Annaberg Public Policy Center.  See:

www.factcheck.org

They find many false statements from both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton’s campaigns.

Stay tuned,

Dave

Stupid Trump Claims – Part III

The Clinton crew gave more than $675,000 to the wife of the deputy director of the FBI.”

Factcheck.org concludes:
Trump says the “Clinton crew,” but he isn’t talking about Clinton or anyone in Clinton’s campaign. He is talking about Democratic Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a longtime friend and supporter of Bill and Hillary Clinton. A political action committee controlled by McAuliffe and the Virginia Democratic Party combined donated more than $675,000 to Dr. Jill McCabe, who unsuccessfully ran for a seat in the Virginia Senate in 2015.
McAuliffe’s PAC, Common Good VA, made other large donations in 2015: $803,500 to state Senate candidate Jeremy McPike, who won his election, and $781,500 to Daniel Gecker, who lost. The big donations were part of an all-out effort by the Democratic governor to help his party gain control of the Senate in the November 2015 elections. That effort failed, and the makeup of the Senate remained unchanged with the Republicans holding a narrow 21 to 19 advantage.
Trump focuses on the donations to McCabe, because she is the wife of Andrew McCabe, who at the time of the donations was either head of the FBI field office in Washington, D.C., or assistant deputy director of the FBI. Andrew McCabe was not involved in the FBI investigation of Clinton’s emails when his wife was running for office. He was promoted to deputy director in February 2016, and at that time he assumed “an oversight role in the investigation into Secretary Clinton’s emails,” according to a statement from an FBI spokesman.
There is no evidence that Clinton had any knowledge of the donations or that they were made to influence the FBI investigation of her handling of classified information. (See “Clinton’s Connection to FBI Official.”)
Trump assembles — or rather disassembles — these half-truths and innuendos to reach his shaky conclusion that “this is bigger than Watergate.” That’s his opinion, but at least one person who was involved in Watergate disagrees.
John Dean, who served as White House counsel to Nixon from 1970 to 1973. wrote an op-ed in the New York Times calling the Watergate comparison “nonsense.”
“Only someone who knows nothing about the law, and the darkest moment of our recent political history, would see a parallel between Nixon’s crimes and Mrs. Clinton’s mistakes,” Dean said, noting that “some four dozen Nixon aides and associates were convicted of or pleaded guilty to criminal misconduct, including me.”

Stupid Trump Claims- Part 2

Hillary Clinton is not playing Trump’s game of making her deny his false allegations. He wants her to play on defense. But I will.

Donald Trump stated the following:

“She made 13 phones disappear, some with a hammer.”

Factcheck.org disagrees:
It is true that the FBI said (on page 8) it “identified 13 total mobile devices … which potentially were used to send e-mails using Clinton’s clintonemail.com e-mail addresses.” But only eight of the 13 were used while Clinton was secretary of state, the FBI said, so Trump exaggerates the number of devices she had during her four years in office. (See “A Guide to Clinton’s Emails.”)
The FBI also quoted a Clinton aide (on page 9) as saying that he could recall on two occasions that he got rid of old mobile devices by breaking them in half or hitting them with a hammer.
Trump insinuates that there is something sinister about owning several mobile devices and destroying the old ones when they are replaced. But the FBI came to no such conclusion, and security experts interviewed by the technology website Wired said destroying old devices is a good way to erase data — if done properly.

The stupid and untrue email claims – Part 1

The great enemy of truth is very often not the lie–deliberate, contrived and dishonest–but the myth–persistent, persuasive and unrealistic. Too often we hold fast to the clichés of our forebears. We subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretations. We enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.

John Kennedy, June 11, 1962, Yale Commencement Address

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Hillary Clinton is not playing Trump’s game of making her deny his false allegations.  He wants her to play on defense.   But I will.

Donald Trump stated the following:

“But you know, the deletion of 33,000 e-mails, boy, that just sort of is so out there, after receiving a subpoena from the United States government. She lied to Congress, she lied to the FBI, she made 13 phones disappear, some with a hammer. The Clinton crew gave more than $675,000 to the wife of the deputy director of the FBI and the man who was overseeing the investigation into Hillary’s illegal server.”

None of these statements are true.

Here is what factcheck.org has to say on the first claim.

Trump conflates and distorts three separate issues to make his Watergate comparison. Let’s take them in order.

“Hillary bleached and deleted 33,000 e-mails after receiving a congressional subpoena.”

Trump is referring to 31,830 emails that Clinton’s lawyers had deemed personal. These emails did not have to be turned over to the State Department, which in the summer of 2014 requested all work-related emails that the former secretary of state had in her possession. (See “A Guide to Clinton’s Emails.”)

The department’s policy allows its employees to determine which emails are work-related and must be preserved. “Messages that are not records may be deleted when no longer needed,” according to the State Department’s Foreign Affairs Manual (5 FAM 443.5). (See “Trump on the Stump.“)

That means Clinton was within her right to delete these emails, so that’s the first thing to know.

Now, Trump is right that these emails were deleted about three weeks after Clinton received a subpoena on March 4 from a Republican-controlled House committee investigating the 2012 deaths of four Americans in Benghazi. However, there is no evidence that she knew that the emails were deleted after the subpoena was issued.

According to the FBI’s investigative notes, Cheryl Mills, Clinton’s former chief of staff, in December 2014 told Platte River Networks that Clinton had preserved her work-related emails and “no longer needed access to any of her e-mails older than 60 days.” At that time, Mills instructed a PRN employee “to modify the e-mail retention policy” on Clinton’s server “to reflect this change.” That would automatically delete the old emails. But the PRN employee told the FBI that “he had an ‘oh shit’ moment” after learning about the subpoena sometime between March 25 and March 31, 2015, which is when he deleted Clinton’s emails. Clinton told the FBI that she was not aware that PRN deleted her emails in late March 2015, and the FBI did not say when she learned that they were deleted. (See “The FBI Files on Clinton’s Emails.”)

PRN used a free software program called BleachBit to delete the emails. That’s what Trump means when he says the emails were “bleached.” Other times he has said that Clinton “used chemicals” to “acid wash or bleach” her emails. That’s part of the deception, too. (See “Trump, Pence ‘Acid Wash’ Facts.”)

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—- Bottom line is there is no requirement that government employees retain personal emails after they leave service.  Also, there is zero evidence to support the allegation that Hillary Clinton ordered deletion of personal emails after receiving a subpoena from a Republican controlled House committee.   

What happens next Comey-wise?

Watching too much CNN recently.   But, what pretty much makes sense, is nothing happens.  Comey  can refuse to answer all questions of an ongoing investigation, so bringing him in front of a subcommittee would be pure political theater.  He could refuse to appear, and be served with a subpoena.

Director Comey could make a mad dash to complete the investigation in the next 5 days- but experts are saying this is not realistic.   So,  nothing is likely to be resolved before the election.  Afterwards, if Clinton is elected, it is a super mess, particularly if Trump fails to concede.

The reason emails were sent to Hillary’s aide laptop, was so she could print them off and give them to Hillary.  If a classified email was on Huma Abedin’s laptop, and subsequently used by Anthony Wiener,  all this was unintentional.   Director Comey will not recommend prosecution for Huma Adelin, Anthony Wiener nor Hillary Clinton IF  classified information not previously discovered on the server  is found on the laptop.    The information was not where it was supposed to be. But there certainly was no public disclosure of classified information, only the unintentional mishandling of information, which Huma nor Anthony Wiener likely did not know was classified, and will not be charged with any crimes.

So I think this is really a lot of fuss by the media over very little.

Stay tuned,

Dave