TriggerFinger


The memo is out


The House FISA Memo has been declassified by the President.

Most of my thoughts below the fold.

I'm trying to pull out "new" information here:

Two investigations: Carter Page and George Popadopoulos. The latter initiated by Strzok ("insurance policy" once Steele got too hot?)

Steele was a paid FBI source and was terminated after his bias was revealed and his dossier was repeatedly used before the FISA court. Terminated, apparently, because of that bias. So yes, the FBI did pay him to work on the dossier. And after being terminated, he remained in contact with the FBI through Nellie Ohr (his colleague at Fusion GPS working on the dossier) and Bruce Ohr (FBI agent).

The dossier was in fact used before the court, probably 4 times, despite being unverified. Known information that would have cast doubt on the dossier was not provided to the court.

Yes, biased agent Strzok did start an investigation.

There's a lot this doesn't cover yet. No information on who was consuming this intelligence, or anything at all about unmasking, and so on.

More details below.
The memo starts by detailing a FISA probable cause order against Carter Page. The FBI and DOJ obtained one warrant and three renewals of that warrant. Comey signed three applications; McCabe signed one; Sally Yates, Dana Boente, and Rod Rosenstein also signed one each. (Why so many signatures for only four applications?" Presumably two signatures per application). Noteworthy here: Rosenstein is the one who appointed Mueller special counsel, yet he signed one of the applications. Yates is the DOJ official who had to be fired after refusing to follow or even defend in court an executive order by Trump related to the travel ban. McCabe is the man who got over half a million in campaign finance donations to his wife's campaign for office while he sat at the FBI obstructing investigations into the Clintons. Rosenstein's integrity is under increasing doubt.

The dossier was used to obtain the FISA court order on Page. The memo says the dossier "formed an essential part" of the application, and the political origins were known to senior DOJ and FBI officials, but were not disclosed to the court.

The application cited an article also sourced from the dossier as corroboration, without noting that they were sourced from the same information.

Steele (dossier author) was suspended and then terminated as an FBI source because he disclosed his relationship to the FBI to the media. It was not the first time he did so, but he apparently successfully concealed the prior times from the FBI.

Steele was known by the FBI (specifically Bruce Ohr) to be biased against Trump, which should have been presented to the FISA court as adverse information. It was not.

Ohr's wife, Nellie, worked for Fusion GPS on the Trump dossier and this was concealed from the FBI. Bruce Ohr apparently accepted opposition research on Trump from Fusion GPS and provided it to others at the FBI.

McCabe testified to the House that without the dossier, no surveillance warrant would have been sought..

According to FBI Counterintelligence head Bill Priestap, the dossier was used in the FISA application before being properly evaluated and corroborated. The effort to corroborate the dossier independently eventually labeled it "minimally corroborated". Despite this, it was used in the FISA application and renewals, Comey briefed Trump on it (which was used by the media as an excuse to report on it).

Steele was apparently terminated as a paid FBI source after his connections to Fusion GPS and anti Trump bias came out. This suggests he was being paid by the FBI for this opposition research until then. No firm termination date.

Strzok opened a second investigation related to Trump "advisor" Papadopoulos.

This entry was published Fri Feb 02 14:23:50 CST 2018 by TriggerFinger and last updated 2018-02-02 12:45:45.0. [Tweet]

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