The Faking News Fakers: ‘Wiretaps? What Wiretaps?’


Every day I try to move awake from Fake News Conspiracies and Obama’s Deep State outrages, THEN I run across another news story that simply brings my blood pressure to a boiling point.

 

I propose to aggregate some of these news tidbits I consider to be acts of treason.

 

I will begin with a stand-alone cross post from Mark Alexander of The Patriot Post looking at the hypocrisy of the Leftist MSM in posting news that fingers a wiretap against Trump YET denies that President Trump has any proof of being wiretapped.

JRH 3/8/17

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The Faking News Fakers: ‘Wiretaps? What Wiretaps?’

The Trump/Putin myth — delegitimizing Trump’s election to keep the administration off-balance and derail his agenda.

 

By Mark Alexander 

Mar. 8, 2017

Email Update Sent 3/8/2017 1:07 PM

The Patriot Post

 

“But the fact being once established, that the press is impotent when it abandons itself to falsehood, I leave to others to restore it to its strength, by recalling it within the pale of truth. Within that, it is a noble institution, equally the friend of science and of civil liberty.” —Thomas Jefferson

 

NYT on Wiretapping & Fake News Denial

 

Despite all the fake media hysterics, keeping the “Trump and Putin rigged the election” myth alive has nothing to do with facts. But it has everything to do with delegitimizing Trump’s stunning victory, keeping his administration off-balance and derailing his agenda.

 

As usual, leftists and their media sycophants never let facts get in the way of a political hatchet job.

 

Last weekend, Donald Trump tweeted a sensational claim — that the Obama administration tapped his phones during the 2016 presidential campaign between Trump and BO’s corrupt heir-apparent, Hillary Clinton. The Democrats’ public relations department, a.k.a. the mainstream media, responded with howls that there was no evidence of any wiretaps, much less evidence Obama knew about any wiretaps — just more Trump paranoid hysteria.

 

However, Patriot Post editor Thomas Gallatin provided a heap of evidentiary substance for Trump’s claims, given that news of wiretaps on senior Trump leadership, while Obama was in office, had been widely affirmed by the same Leftmedia outlets now denying Trump’s claims about wiretaps. Some of the more notable MSM print and talkinghead “journalists” even cited these wiretaps as sources for their “reports” on Trump.

 

Gallatin pointed out that the MSM was “disingenuously dismissive” in rejecting Trump’s charge, especially given that an initial request to wiretap Trump’s team was turned down by the FISAC (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Court), but subsequent requests were granted.

 

Allow me to elaborate.

 

In June 2016, after Trump had clinched the Republican nomination, Obama’s Attorney General Loretta Lynch tried to meet secretly with Bill Clinton on a tarmac at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. A few days later, after a visit to the White House, Lynch’s Department of Justice asked the FISAC for wiretaps not just for communication devices in Trump’s office but specifically for Trump’s phones.

 

This request never would have been submitted without Lynch’s consent, which she never would have given without Obama’s consent. (If only the NSA could produce a transcript of that conversation.) While FISAC most often rubber stamps requests, the court denied the Obama administration’s first request because it was a fishing expedition based on speculation of criminal activity.

 

On 21 July Trump became the Republican nominee. A week later, The Washington Post and other media outlets began propagating the Trump/Putin collusion myth.

 

In October, a month ahead of the presidential election, looking for any shred of evidence that might corroborate the myth, Obama’s Department of Justice again asked FISAC for wiretap warrants for Trump’s office, this time (according to our sources) omitting Trump’s name specifically and making the request on broad speculation about national security concerns. FISAC approved that request, and since such permissions apply, by extension, to others mentioned in the intercepted communications, we may fairly assume that Trump’s name was mentioned and, consequently, his lines were monitored.

 

Recall if you will that a week before the election, Hillary Clinton posted this social media message: “Computer scientists have uncovered a covert server linking the Trump organization to a Russian-based server.”

 

Huh? Did she mean the “scientists” at the Department of Justice? Was she confusing this with the discovery of her own “covert servers”?

 

In fact, no such evidence of the Russian link has been discovered.

 

Sidebar: However, there were direct links between Tony Podesta, brother of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta, and Russians, who paid him more than $170,000 for six months of “consulting” to influence Clinton and ensure, once elected, she would reduce the sanctions Obama was compelled to impose after Putin invaded Ukraine. His firm was paid $24 million in fees in 2016, mostly from foreign interests.

 

Back to the media’s now-acute case of wiretap amnesia — they now insist that Trump’s wiretap accusations have no merit.

 

Allow me to direct your attention to a headline on the front page of The New York Times on Inauguration Day, January 20th, which boldly cites Trump wiretaps as its source for information regarding assertions about collusion between Russia and Trump’s campaign leadership team.

 

According to Times writer Michael Schmidt, “American law-enforcement and intelligence agencies are examining intercepted communications and financial transactions as part of a broader investigation into possible links between Russian officials and associates of President elect Donald J Trump. … The FBI is leading the investigations, aided by the National Security Agency, the CIA and the Treasury Department’s financial crimes unit. … The investigators have accelerated their efforts in recent weeks but have found no conclusive evidence of wrongdoing. [So, why is this front-page news on Inauguration Day?] One official said intelligence reports based on some of the wiretapped communications had been provided to the White House.”

 

Got that? Again, “some of the wiretapped communications had been provided to the White House” — while Obama was still in office.

 

This week, the same Times writer, Michael Schmidt, under the headline “Trump Offering No Evidence,” asserts that Trump “accused former President Barack Obama of tapping his phones at Trump Tower the month before the election, leveling the explosive allegation without offering any evidence.”

 

The same “no evidence” headlines were atop The Washington Post and other MSM outlets.

 

Donald J. Trump

@realDonaldTrump

 

Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my “wires tapped” in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!

 

5:35 AM – 4 Mar 2017

 

For the record, while Trump’s social media wiretap messages were intended to imply that Obama had knowledge of the wiretaps, as is too often the case with such “loosely worded messaging,” he provided the MSM yet another “huge” opening to focus on the fallacy of his “literal message.”

 

Frankly, all of us should be able to take the literal words of a United States president posted on social media, literally. There is now a predictable MSM blowup pattern when Trump’s version of literal departs from the rest of the world’s reality, and these self-inflicted wounds continue to cost him precious political capital.

 

In this instance, the MSM used his literal messages to divert from the questionable legality of the wiretaps and their propagation of the Trump/Putin myth, and focus instead on the fact there is currently no evidence of Obama fingerprints on, or knowledge of, those wiretaps — even though Schmidt wrote in January that the wiretapped communications were provided to the White House while Obama was in office.

 

Let me reiterate: The July and October wiretap requests never would have been submitted without Lynch’s consent, which she never would have given without Obama’s consent. But there will likely be no fingerprints or electronic trail on these consents. Obama’s staff would have most certainly ensured that he had “plausible deniability” in regard to any knowledge of politically motivated wiretaps.

 

Former Attorney General Michael Mukasey concludes, “I think [Trump is] right in that there was surveillance and that it was conducted at the behest of the attorney general — at the Justice Department.” But proving it is another matter.

 

That notwithstanding, there is plenty of reason for anyone with an ounce of healthy skepticism to conclude, with high probability, that Trump’s communications were intercepted and, with a reasonable level of confidence, that Obama was aware of those wiretaps.

 

Of course, the first victim within Trump’s administration to be felled by these “non-existent wiretaps” — orchestrated and illegally released by some yet-to-be determined government hack while Obama was in office — was Trump’s nominee for National Security Advisor, Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn.

 

Flynn, as you may recall, was the most vocal former high-ranking military officer who opposed Obama’s nefarious “Iran Nuke Deal,” which is precisely what put him in the sights of Obama’s deep state operatives who remain within the FBI and/or CIA.

 

After his confirmation in January, Flynn was bushwhacked with a complicated web of media accusations based on wiretap transcripts, which were illegally distributed to Obama-friendly MSM outlets.

 

Though the Flynn transcripts indicated no wrongdoing, in February he fell on his own sword and resigned in order to minimize the collateral political damage to the Trump administration. (For the record, the CIA and the Departments of Justice and Treasury are now being sued by Judicial Watch, on behalf of Flynn, to see whose fingerprints are on those wiretaps.)

 

Amid the wiretap wars this week, you may have missed this conclusion about the Trump/Putin election collusion from former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. According to Clapper, there wasn’t “any evidence” found by the CIA or FBI in their investigations that would indicate “any reflection of collusion between members of the Trump campaign and the Russians.”

 

The New York Times conceded as much in January and again in February, so why was this a front-page headline story?

 

But as noted previously, the Leftmedia never let facts get in the way of a political hit piece — until they’re caught in a BIG propaganda lie. In the light of truth, the political cockroaches scurry for cover.

 

Andrew McCarthy, a former assistant U.S. attorney and respected legal analyst, summarized the lie: “The specter of an investigation — breathless media reports of FISA-court applications, wiretaps, surveillance of agents of a foreign power, and mysterious servers; painstaking analysis of shady financial transactions involving Russian banks and funding streams — seems to make the outlandish conspiracy impossible to dismiss out of hand.”

 

McCarthy continued, “Into this misleading ‘Russia hacked the election’ narrative, the press and the Dems injected a second explosive allegation: Not only did Russia hack the election, but there are also enough ties between people in the Trump orbit and operatives of the Putin regime that there are grounds to believe that the Trump campaign was complicit in Russia’s hacking of the election. Transparently, the aim is to undermine the legitimacy of Trump’s election victory.”

 

As for the Leftmedia retreat, McCarthy notes, “Now that they’ve been called on it, the media and Democrats are gradually retreating from the investigation they’ve been touting for months as the glue for their conspiracy theory. It’s actually quite amusing to watch: How dare you suggest President Obama would ever order surveillance! Who said anything about FISAC orders? What evidence do you lunatic conservatives have — uh, other than what we media professionals been reporting — that there was any investigation of the Trump campaign?”

 

Constitutional attorney Mark Levin, former chief of staff to Ronald Reagan’s Attorney General Edwin Meese, asserts that while “No evidence is found” tying Trump or anyone on his team to Russia, “the wiretaps continue.”

 

Levin concludes, “The issue isn’t whether the Obama administration spied on the Trump campaign or transition of surrogates; the issue is the extent of it.”

 

Which leads me back to my original assertion: The Trump/Putin myth being propagated by the Democrats and their Leftmedia propagandists has nothing to do with facts and everything to do with derailing Trump’s agenda. However, Trump’s social media messages are certainly assisting their cause.

 

Footnote: Unfortunately, some of the “conservative media,” most notably Fox News, are reading off the same Beltway memos being broadcast by the Leftmedia — but then they also have advertising to sell… Fox News now has a lower rating for “somewhat credible” and higher rating for “not credible” than CNN, according to recent news credibility polling.

 

Mark Alexander
Publisher, The Patriot Post
Pro Deo et Libertas ~ 1776

 

Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis
Pro Deo et Libertas — 1776

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Dem Propaganda & Deep State Coup?


John R. Houk

© March 6, 2017

 

The Dems have tried to frame President Trump with getting the Russians to fix the November elections to Trump’s favor. Indeed, traitor former President Obama has been exposed with his own self trying to sway the election with the Russian Fake News story combined with some Watergate style campaign spying in the name of National Security.

 

FINALLY! President Trump is pushing back! Our President is letting the cat out of the bag and the Dems are trying to obfuscate the push back with typical denials in their defense of treasonous Obama.

 

Here is some more Obama/Dem Deep State documentation of the travesty of pulling a legal coup against President Trump. I have to wonder. WHEN the legal coup fails, will the Obama/Dems begin a violent coup as evidenced in the streets with violence against Pro-Trumpers? Can you say Loretta Lynch?

 

VIDEO: Loretta Lynch Calls for MARCHING, BLOOD and even DEATH in Resistance to Trump in new Facebook Video

 

Posted by The Tolerant Left

Published on Mar 4, 2017

 

As to the push back against Obama, Mark Levin outlines the very same thing Trump refers to on Fox & Friends yesterday. The irony! The sources cited by Levin are Left oriented rags (Levin uses the term “another Right Wing” in a tongue-in-cheek fashion to get his point across).

 

VIDEO: Mark Levin PROVES Obama Wiretapping on President Donald Trump | Fox & Friends 3/5/17

 

Posted by KagenOfficial

Published on Mar 5, 2017

 

Mark Levin interview on Fox News Fox & Friends on March 5, 2017 3/5/17 and provides proof of Obama Administration Wiretapping Spying by FBI and NSA. Mark Levin proves wiretap trump tower

 

If you are foolish enough to watch other news outlets castigate President Trump for his tweets against treasonous Obama, YOU have to see the hypocrisy that Levin sources the Left for Obama meddling in the 2016 election cycle!

 

JRH 3/6/17

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SPYGATE: Mark Levin Provides The Timeline And Proof Of The Obama Administration Using Police Tactics Against Trump [VIDEO]

 

By Terresa Monroe-Hamilton

March 5, 2017 

Noisy Room

 

Obama Spying

 

Mark Levin is on a tear and it is a wonder to behold. I just watched him provide solid proof on Fox News on how all these police tactics against President Trump did indeed occur. The media provided most of the proof themselves that the two FISA requests were sought by Obama… the first one in June of last year, which mentioned Trump directly and was denied, and a second that occurred in October last year and was narrowed in scope, then was approved. It looks like it may have been targeting a server in the White House that was emailing Russian banks supposedly. No wrongdoing was found, unless of course you count what Obama did.

 

Levin has laid out exactly how this should be investigated and he has the full attention of the White House. His findings and recommendations have been circulated to several White House staffers, according to Washington Post reporter Robert Costa. The FISA orders and transcripts should now be made public and hearings should begin over all this. The media is still insisting there is no proof, when they provided said proof. This is insane.

 

From Conservative Review:

 

Mark Levin, Conservative Review’s editor-in-chief, recommends the Trump administration open an investigation into Barack Obama. Levin states the former president’s team used police-state tactics against then-candidate Trump during the 2016 election.

 

“The gravity of this is unparalleled. It appears that during the course of a presidential election, the Obama administration used both intelligence and law enforcement agencies to investigate the Republican nominee’s campaign and certain surrogates,” Levin tells Conservative Review.

 

Levin – who served as chief of staff for President Reagan’s Attorney General Ed Meese – explained the potential scandal on his Thursday evening radio show:

 

“We have a prior administration – Barack Obama and his surrogates – who are supporting Hillary Clinton and her party, the Democratic Party. Who were using the … intelligence activities to surveil members of the Trump campaign, and to put that information out in the public.

 

“The question is: Was Obama surveilling top Trump campaign officials during the election?” Levin asked on “The Mark Levin Show.”

 

Mark Levin is calling this a silent coup. And he is correct. I’ve looked right at this evidence for months and I never connected the dots. I’m so glad Levin did. It is obvious to me that Barack Obama did know about all this and had Lynch at the DOJ once again do his dirty work. There was and is an orchestrated plan to sabotage the Trump presidency and not only stop him from getting his appointees approved, but stop him from accomplishing anything of merit or that would hurt the Obama legacy.

 

A myriad of things now look very connected. The protests and riots, Valerie Jarrett moving into Obama’s mansion, Jarrett’s daughter being hired by CNN to cover the DOJ and Jeff Sessions when she’s not even a journalist, the attack on Jeff Sessions himself, and on and on and on. When do we wake up and realize we are at war within? And that Obama and his activists must be stopped and held accountable. You’ve got Loretta Lynch literally calling for blood and death in our streets: …They’ve marched, they’ve bled and yes, some of them died. This is hard. Every good thing is. We have done this before. We can do this again– Loretta Lynch, February 28 2017 This is who we are fighting and we must now see this through and show the left that we will not stand for police state tactics against Americans like this and especially against an elected President.

 

[Noisy Room Video posted above]

 

Full Interview [Fox & Friends Weekend]: http://insider.foxnews.com/2017/03/05/mark-levin-donald-trump-barack-obama-wiretapping

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WAS OBAMA’S TAP OF TRUMP LEGAL, AMERICAN?

Exclusive: Joseph Farah reveals why scandal is ‘bigger and worse than Watergate’

 

By JOSEPH FARAH

March 5, 2017

WND

 

After Donald Trump blew the whistle on the eavesdropping of his 2016 campaign headquarters by Barack Obama’s administration, few in the media or elsewhere seem to be asking the obvious questions:

Was it legal?

 

Was it ethical – in the American way?

 

One thing is for certain: If the roles were reversed and the Trump administration bugged Democrats, you can imagine the media would take a much different view.

 

Let’s first take a look at how the media reported this travesty of justice, political decorum, the Constitution and American legal tradition:

 

  • Washington Post: President Trump on Saturday angrily accused former President Barack Obama of orchestrating a “Nixon/Watergate” plot to tap the phones at his Trump Tower headquarters in the run-up to last fall’s election, providing no evidence to support his explosive claim and drawing a flat denial from Obama’s office.

 

  • CNN: Trump’s baseless wiretap claim

 

  • Atlantic: Trump’s Unfounded Claims of a “Nixon/Watergate” Wiretapping Scheme

 

  • Huffington Post: Obama Refutes Allegation that He Wiretapped Trump Tower During Campaign

 

  • New York Daily News: Trump’s poor understanding of national security investigations may prove dangerous

 

  • New York Times: President Trump on Saturday accused former President Barack Obama of tapping his phones at Trump Tower the month before the election, leveling the explosive allegation without offering any evidence.

 

The emphasis of all of these “fake news” reports is disingenuous to say the least. Obama didn’t deny his administration wiretapped Trump. He said no one at the White House did. That is a virtual admission that his administration did, probably Justice Department, meaning the “apolitical Loretta Lynch” who just called for “blood and death” in the streets to stop Trump, much to the approval of Senate Democrats. It’s an obvious parsing of words by the slick Obama.

 

The accusation is indeed bigger than Watergate, which began with an attempt not to eavesdrop directly on Richard Nixon’s opponent in the 1972 presidential election, but on Larry O’Brian, the head of the DNC, whose offices were in the Watergate Hotel. He was the Debbie Wasserman-Schultz of his day, but she and Hillary Clinton campaign Chairman John Podesta didn’t bother securing their email communications, and you could read them all on WikiLeaks.

 

And that brings us to the excuse for Trump’s campaign being undoubtedly bugged – the elusive evidence for Russian hacking and interference in the 2016 U.S. election.

 

If you doubt there is no evidence, just carefully read every New York Times story on the fake scandal. Way down near the bottom of every story, the paper that has trumpeted this story the most admits there’s no evidence.

 

So, here’s the way this thing obviously went down.

 

Obama’s team first tried to get a broad FISA warrant to investigate the Russian fantasy. The judge turned it down.

 

It tried again with a narrower FISA warrant request. The judge turned it down.

 

Then it tried a third time, and the judge approved it in October. Coincidentally, that is the exact time Trump says the wiretapping began.

 

Not one of these big news organizations will tell you that.

 

It’s the attorney general who would request such wiretap authorizations for heavy-duty, politically charged requests such as this – not that any have ever been requested or authorized in the history of the republic.

 

Do news organizations really want to be covering up stuff like this? Don’t they understand the same tactics can be used against them? Obama, or (wink-wink) Lynch, just set the precedent.

 

Nixon never did anything remotely like this – and he was forced from office as a result. Obama or Lynch could well be prosecuted by the Trump administration. And one or both probably should be.

 

Misuse of FISA statutes is a clear violation of the law.

 

FISA can only be used for “foreign intelligence information” as the basis for surveillance to protect the U.S. against a “grave” or “hostile” attack, war-like sabotage or international terror.

 

Does anyone suggest such a thing with regard to Russian hacks?

 

That’s what makes this scandal, pardon the expression, “bigger than Watergate.”

 

Out of more than 35,000 FISA court requests, only 12 have ever been rejected. But two out of three requested by the Obama administration to investigate the Russia deal were. What does that tell you?

 

It tells me this was a political fishing expedition to build a case against Trump if or when he beat Hillary.

 

Since the election, the hysteria over Russia’s role in the election has only increased exponentially.

 

And that’s why:

 

1. I believe Trump.

2. I don’t believe Obama.

3. I don’t believe the “fake news cartel,” which is all in for finding the elusive Trump-Russia link.

 

What we’ve got here at first glance is a prima facie case for “bigger and worse than Watergate.”

 

But the Washington Post and New York Times have already signaled they won’t be investigating. They are already publishing front-page editorials that stake out a rather shrill “see-no-evil, hear-no-evil, speak-no-evil” approach.

 

Was it legal? No.

 

Was it ethical in the American political tradition? No.

 

Is it one of the most dangerous developments in American political history? Yes.

 

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The Obama Camp’s Disingenuous Denials on FISA Surveillance of Trump 

 

By ANDREW C. MCCARTHY

Originally NATIONAL REVIEW

March 5, 2017

Israpundit

Posted by Ted Belman

 

President Trump’s early Saturday morning tweeting has exploded to the forefront an uncovered scandal I’ve been talking about since early January (including in this weekend’s column): The fact that the Obama Justice Department and the FBI investigated associates of Donald Trump, and likely Trump himself, in the heat of the presidential campaign.

 

To summarize, reporting indicates that, prior to June 2016, the Obama Justice Department and FBI considered a criminal investigation of Trump associates, and perhaps Trump himself, based on concerns about connections to Russian financial institutions. Preliminary poking around indicated that there was nothing criminal involved. Rather than shut the case down, though, the Obama Justice Department converted it into a national-security investigation under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). FISA allows the government, if it gets court permission, to conduct electronic surveillance (which could include wiretapping, monitoring of e-mail, and the like) against those it alleges are “agents of a foreign power.”
FISA applications and the evidence garnered from them are classified – i.e., we would not know about any of this unless someone had leaked classified information to the media, a felony. In June, the Obama Justice Department submitted an application that apparently “named” Trump in addition to some of his associates.

 

As I have stressed, it is unclear whether “named” in this context indicates that Trump himself was cited as a person the Justice Department was alleging was a Russian agent whom it wanted to surveil. It could instead mean that Trump’s name was merely mentioned in an application that sought to conduct surveillance on other alleged Russian agents. President Trump’s tweets on Saturday claimed that “President Obama . . . tapp[ed] my phones[,]” which makes it more likely that Trump was targeted for surveillance, rather than merely mentioned in the application.

 

In any event, the FISA court reportedly turned down the Obama Justice Department’s request, which is notable: The FISA court is notoriously solicitous of government requests to conduct national-security surveillance (although, as I’ve noted over the years, the claim by many that it is a rubber-stamp is overblown).

 

Not taking no for an answer, the Obama Justice Department evidently returned to the FISA court in October 2016, the critical final weeks of the presidential campaign. This time, the Justice Department submitted a narrowly tailored application that did not mention Trump. The court apparently granted it, authorizing surveillance of some Trump associates.

 

It is unknown whether that surveillance is still underway, but the New York Times has identified – again, based on illegal leaks of classified information – at least three of its targets: Paul Manafort (the former Trump campaign chairman who was ousted in August), and two others whose connection to the Trump campaign was loose at best, Manafort’s former political-consulting business partner Roger Stone, and investor Carter Page.

 

The Times report (from mid-January) includes a lot of heavy breathing about potential ties between the Trump campaign and Russia; but it ultimately concedes that the government’s FISA investigation may have nothing to do with Trump, the campaign, or alleged Russian efforts to interfere in the U.S. election by hacking e-mail accounts. Trump’s tweets on Saturday prompted some interesting “denials” from the Obama camp. These can be summarized in the statement put out by Obama spokesman Kevin Lewis:

 

A cardinal rule of the Obama Administration was that no White House official ever interfered with any independent investigation led by the Department of Justice. As part of that practice, neither President Obama nor any White House official ever ordered surveillance on any U.S. citizen. Any suggestion otherwise is simply false.

 

This seems disingenuous on several levels. First, as Obama officials well know, under the FISA process, it is technically the FISA court that “orders” surveillance. And by statute, it is the Justice Department, not the White House, that represents the government in proceedings before the FISA court. So, the issue is not whether Obama or some member of his White House staff “ordered” surveillance of Trump and his associates.

 

The issues are (a) whether the Obama Justice Department sought such surveillance authorization from the FISA court, and (b) whether, if the Justice Department did that, the White House was aware of or complicit in the decision to do so. Personally, given the explosive and controversial nature of the surveillance request we are talking about – an application to wiretap the presidential candidate of the opposition party, and some of his associates, during the heat of the presidential campaign, based on the allegation that the candidate and his associates were acting as Russian agents – it seems to me that there is less than zero chance that could have happened without consultation between the Justice Department and the White House. [Blog Editor’s bold text]

 

Second, the business about never ordering surveillance against American citizens is nonsense. Obama had American citizens killed in drone operations. Obviously, that was not done in the U.S. or through the FISA process; it was done overseas, under the president’s commander-in-chief and statutory authority during wartime.

 

But the notion that Obama would never have an American subject to surveillance is absurd. Third, that brings us to a related point: FISA national-security investigations are not like criminal investigations. They are more like covert intelligence operations – which presidents personally sign off on. [Blog Editor’s bold text]

 

The intention is not to build a criminal case; it is to gather information about what foreign powers are up, particularly on U.S. soil. One of the points in FISA proceedings’ being classified is that they remain secret – the idea is not to prejudice an American citizen with publication of the fact that he has been subjected to surveillance even though he is not alleged to have engaged in criminal wrongdoing. Consequently, there is nothing wrong, in principle, with a president’s ordering national-security surveillance of a potential foreign agent who may be helping a foreign power threaten American security and interests.

 

That is one of the president’s main jobs – there would be something wrong if a president, who truly believed the nation was threatened by a foreign power, failed to take action. Prior to FISA’s enactment in 1978, courts had no formal role in the surveillance of foreign agents for national-security purposes – it was a unilateral executive-branch function. Beginning with the Carter administration during FISA’s enactment, it has been the position of presidential administrations of both parties that, despite the enactment of the FISA process, the president maintains inherent authority under Article II of the Constitution to order surveillance even in the absence of court authorization. [Blog Editor’s bold text]

 

Of course, doing so is controversial, as President Bush learned after he directed the NSA to conduct warrantless wiretapping of suspected terrorists following the 9/11 attacks. Nevertheless, we should not allow the statements of Obama spokesmen to confuse us here. The Justice Department and FBI have two missions: (a) criminal law-enforcement and (b) national security. It would be scandalous (though probably not constitutional unconstitutional) for a president to interfere in the law-enforcement mission by ordering the Justice Department to prosecute someone outside its normal procedures.

 

But it would not be inappropriate  e–ven though civil libertarians would raise holy hell — for the president to direct warrantless surveillance against a target, even an American citizen, if the president truly believed that target was functioning as an agent of a foreign power threatening U.S. interests. To be clear, there does not seem to be any evidence, at least that I know of, to suggest that any surveillance or requests to conduct surveillance against then-candidate Donald Trump was done outside the FISA process.

 

Nevertheless, whether done inside or outside the FISA process, it would be a scandal of Watergate dimension if a presidential administration sought to conduct, or did conduct, national-security surveillance against the presidential candidate of the opposition party. Unless there was some powerful evidence that the candidate was actually acting as an agent of a foreign power, such activity would amount to a pretextual use of national-security power for political purposes. That is the kind of abuse that led to Richard Nixon’s resignation in lieu of impeachment. [Blog Editor’s bold text]

 

Moreover, it cannot be glossed over that, at the very time it appears the Obama Justice Department was seeking to surveil Trump and/or his associates on the pretext that they were Russian agents, the Obama Justice Department was also actively undermining and ultimately closing without charges the criminal investigation of Hillary Clinton despite significant evidence of felony misconduct that threatened national security. This appears to be extraordinary, politically motivated abuse of presidential power.  [I have updated the post, as indicated, to reflect that I meant “not unconstitutional” in a passage in which I erroneously said “not constitutional.] -[Blog Editor’s bold text]

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Dem Propaganda & Deep State Coup?

John R. Houk

© March 6, 2017

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SPYGATE: Mark Levin Provides The Timeline And Proof Of The Obama Administration Using Police Tactics Against Trump [VIDEO]

 

© 2017 NoisyRoom.net

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WAS OBAMA’S TAP OF TRUMP LEGAL, AMERICAN?

 

Copyright 2017 WND

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The Obama Camp’s Disingenuous Denials on FISA Surveillance of Trump 

 

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