For a couple weeks there have been reports that there is a 4-page memo written by the House Intelligence Committee outlining surveillance abuses by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Department of Justice during the 2016 presidential election. Other reports claimed that the surveillance abuse was used against then-candidate Donald Trump and that the FBI and DOJ were working to undermine his campaign. It is also believed that these illegal surveillance practices were used to open the “Russia collusion” investigation which implicated President Trump.
Thankfully, we don’t have to read any more reports or speculate further as to what is in this memo. We have access to the memo now. This is as explosive as it was made out to be. Click here to read it yourself.
Key takeaways from the memo
First, it appears that the infamous and discredited dossier was used as key evidence to obtain a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court warrant to spy on Donald Trump and his associates during the 2016 presidential campaign. In addition, a top FBI official, Andrew McCabe, testified to Congress that without the dossier, it most likely would not have been possible to obtain the warrant. What’s the problem with this? The Russian dossier made numerous claims regarding Donald Trump’s past in which none of the claims could be verified or corroborated. This means that the FBI presented false information to one of the most important courts in America in order to spy on a national political campaign. Presenting false and unsubstantiated evidence to a court in order to obtain a warrant is illegal.
Second, top DOJ and FBI officials knew that the dossier was purely political in nature but kept this important fact from the court. Hiding key facts such as the origin and political nature of evidence from a court is wrong and possibly illegal. To affirm the political origin of the dossier, the author admitted to Bruce Ohr, a top DOJ official, that he had a disdain for Donald Trump and didn’t want Trump to be president. The DOJ and FBI officials also kept this information from the FISA court.
Who is implicated in this memo?
Former FBI Director James Comey, former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe, former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, and current Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein each signed one or more of these falsified FISA applications. Other top DOJ and FBI officials including Bruce Ohr, Peter Strzok, and Lisa Page were also a part of presenting knowingly falsified information to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.
What should happen now?
Because the surveillance application was built on falsified information, every FBI and DOJ official who signed off on, participated in, and vouched for the validity of the surveillance application presented to the FISA court should be charged for presenting false information to federal judges.