President Trump drops another Mother Of All Bombs, this time in a twitter version directly targeted at a corrupted and politicized James Comey Dept. of Justice.
And what’s more stunning in the aftershock is the media’s incapacity to take the new Trump/Comey timeline information and add it to the existing Sally Yates timeline.
Then again, to do so would be to expose another level of FBI/DOJ politicization that remains hidden from public consumption. Another political operative, Asst. Director of Counter Intelligence, Bill Priestap, who accompanied acting AG Sally Yates to the meeting with White House Counsel Don McGahn, is a Hillary Clinton campaign donor.
♦We know from Director James Comey’s own admission to congress that he intentionally withheld congressional notification of a counter-intelligence investigation that began in July of 2016.
Within Comey’s March 20th testimony to explain why he intentionally avoided congressional oversight, he cited the recommendation of Bill Priestap, Asst. Director of Counter Intelligence.
Bill Priestap is married to Sabina Menshell a self-employed “consultant” with a history of donations to Democrat candidates, specifically to Hillary Clinton.
♦We also know from Sally Yates testimony (May 8th), where she outlined the notification of White House Counsel Don McGahn of the issues the DOJ had with Michael Flynn, that Yates took Bill Priestap with her to the WH meeting on January 26th.
So let’s add President Trump’s meeting with FBI Director James Comey into the timeline of Sally Yates, and add her version of what McGahn’s concerns were about the content of the afternoon meeting:
•Friday January 20th – Inauguration
•Tuesday January 24th – Lt. Gen. Mike Flynn was interviewed at the White House by the FBI.
•Wednesday January 25th – The Department of Justice received a detailed readout from the FBI agents who had interviewed Flynn. Yates said she felt “it was important to get this information to the White House as quickly as possible.”
•Thursday January 26th – (morning) Yates called McGahn first thing that morning to tell him she had “a very sensitive matter” that had to be discussed face to face. McGahn agreed to meet with Yates later that afternoon.
•Thursday January 26th – (afternoon) Sally Yates traveled to the White House along with a senior member of the DOJ’s National Security Division, Bill Priestap, who was overseeing the matter. This was Yates’ first meeting with McGahn in his office, which also acts as a sensitive compartmented information facility (SCIF).
Yates said she began their meeting by laying out the media accounts and media statements made by Vice President Mike Pence and other high-ranking White House officials about General Flynn’s activity “that we knew not to be the truth.”
According to Sally Yates testimony, she and Bill Priestap reportedly presented all the information to McGahn so the White House could take action that they deemed appropriate. When asked by McGahn if Flynn should be fired, Yates answered, “that really wasn’t our call.”
Yates also said her decision to notify the White House counsel had been discussed “at great length.” According to her testimony: “Certainly leading up to our notification on the 26th, it was a topic of a whole lot of discussion in DOJ and with other members of the intel community.”
•Friday January 27th – (morning) White House Counsel Don McGahn called Yates in the morning and asked if she could come back to his office.
•Friday January 27th – (late afternoon) According to her testimony, Sally Yates returned to the White House late that afternoon. One of McGahn’s topics discussed was whether Flynn could be prosecuted for his conduct.
Specifically, according to Yates, one of the questions McGahn asked Yates was, “Why does it matter to DOJ if one White House official lies to another?” She explained that it “was a whole lot more than that,” and reviewed the same issues outlined the prior day.
McGahn expressed his concern that taking action might interfere with the FBI investigation of Flynn, and Yates said it wouldn’t. “It wouldn’t really be fair of us to tell you this and then expect you to sit on your hands,” Yates had told McGahn.
McGahn asked if he could look at the underlying evidence of Flynn’s conduct, and she said they would work with the FBI over the weekend and “get back with him on Monday morning.”
•Friday January 27th – (evening) In what appears to be only a few hours later, President Trump is having dinner with FBI Director James Comey where President Trump asked if he was under investigation.
Now, accepting the politicization of the entire Russian Conspiracy Narrative that was leading the headlines for the two months prior to this dinner; and knowing moments earlier your Chief White House counsel informs you that two political operatives (Yates and Priestap) within the DOJ were providing classified intelligence reports about General Flynn; and knowing the prior months (Nov/Dec/Jan) were fraught with leaks from intelligence reports identical to those discussed; wouldn’t you perhaps think that any action you take could be utilized to add fuel to this Russian narrative? And/Or be used by these same leak facilitators to make something seem like something it is not?
Think about it.
If you were President under those circumstances, wouldn’t you ask FBI Director James Comey what the deal was with these investigations, and whether or not you were under investigation BEFORE you took action to retain or fire Mike Flynn?
Given the circumstances it could appear, and most definitely should be considered, that the President was being ‘set-up’ to impede an FBI investigation by taking action against Flynn.
If Trump took action – What mechanism was in place for the President to protect himself from accusations of impropriety and impeding an investigation?
Who is to say Yates and Priestap would stand behind the White House and support action taken by the President?
What confidence would President Trump have that Yates/Priestap would speak publicly about their advice?
What would FBI Director Comey and Asst. FBI Director McCabe do with a President Trump conversation about Mike Flynn who was “under investigation”?
Remember, for reference: On February 15th while discussing another issue FBI Assistant Director Andrew McCabe asked Chief of Staff Reince Priebus for 5 minutes alone after the meeting. At the one-on-one McCabe told Priebus the New York Times Russia and Trump campaign story was a “bunch of BS”.
Priebus asked McCabe if McCabe would be able to say that publicly. McCabe said he would check. Later, McCabe called back and said he couldn’t issue a statement about it. SEE SCREENGRAB:
These are not exactly the most trustworthy of FBI and DOJ officials.
Exactly the opposite is true. These are known political operatives, in appointed positions of government, with admitted intentions to manipulate transparency, accountability and they even testify to congress they are intentionally not allowing oversight.
President Trump was expected to trust this crew?
UPDATE 7:30pm: As if on cue, THIS is the exact trap we are talking about above.
SEE? In the first paragraph of the first article to draw attention to the timeline, the accusation is made that President Trump was “interfering with an ongoing FBI investigation”.
That is exactly the trap that Director Comey, Acting AG Yates and Asst. Director of DOJ Counter Intel Priestap were laying out. Director Comey went to that dinner HOPING that Trump would ask him about Michael Flynn which would be seen as impeding a federal investigation.
For several months the media have been steadfast in their efforts to turn this into Watergate 2.0. To achieve that objective the political angle-players and media need only to paint Trump into a corner with a credible accusation of the president interfering with an FBI investigation (Flynn). Against the timeline above, as played out this week with Sally Yates testimony to congress, they were only a couple more timely misinformation leaks and twisted reports away from making that happen.
Now look at this tweet again: