There are so many angles to this political storyline it’s almost impossible to encapsulate them. Today a Politico article reveals the John McCain/Lindsey Graham push to create an international crisis with Russia has found push-back from an unlikely source, Senate Leader Mitch McConnell.
(Politico) John McCain and Lindsey Graham are backing off of their push for a select committee on cybersecurity after Russian interference in the election, bowing to the political reality that the Senate Republican Conference largely does not back their idea.
[…] “We’re just going to move with the individual committees and see how that works. If it doesn’t work, we’ll regroup,” [Lindsey] Graham said in an interview.
[John] McCain said he’d spoken to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) about the matter. McConnell prefers to use the Intelligence Committee to spearhead the cyber investigation, and McCain said their discussions had done little to move the GOP leader. “He said he doesn’t think we need it,” McCain said. (more)
The House Intelligence Committee Chairman Nunes, has already clearly stated the insufferable intelligence claims of John Brennan (CIA) and James Clapper (ODNI) just simply don’t make sense.
Additionally, Nunes highlighted how neither intelligence group was willing to make their case of “Russian Hacking” on-the-record to the House Permanent Committee on Intelligence.
The intellectually honest observer would note that Brennan and Clapper’s refusal to give testimony on this issue is transparent evidence of their claims being purely political in motivation. The generalized FBI report outlining vague and disingenuous cyber-hacking overall, is further evidence of the lack of substance to the Clapper/Brennan construct.
In short, there simply is no “there” there.
Nunes, as Chairman of the House Committee, is one of the Intelligence Gang of Eight members, so too is Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan and Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr:
Senate Leader Mitch McConnell is the only remaining GOP member on the Gang of Eight from the time of the Libya and Syria Clinton/Panetta Benghazi fiasco. This fact is tangentially related to his current position.
If President Trump decides to go full swamp-draining wolverine on the intelligence community, McConnell is the only remaining GOP leading member who is substantively at risk from such a public exposition. All other GOP usurpers quit or retired from office.
President-elect Donald Trump now twirls his Zippo next to the only remaining horsehair holding back the sword of Damocles. Tenuously positioned above them, the visible risk remains for the congressional “oversight” Go8 team who were/are charged with all covert operational oversight. One public flick of that Zippo and everyone remaining who was part of that 2010-2012 group could be held to account for high crimes and malfeasance.
It is in Mitch McConnell’s best interest to avoid any conflict with the incoming “outsider” White House as it relates to ‘intelligence oversight and/or accountability’.