Text Version of HPSCI Memo and WH Cover Letter

THE WHITE HOUSE – WASHINGTON – February 2, 2018

The Honorable Devin Nunes Chairman, House Permanent Select Committee on
Intelligence
United States Capitol
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Mr. Chairman:

On January 29,2018, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (hereinafter “the Committee”) voted to disclose publicly a memorandum containing classified information provided to the Committee in connection with its oversight activities (the “Memorandum,” which is attached to this letter). As provided by clause II(g) of Rule X of the House of Representatives, the Committee has forwarded this Memorandum to the President based on its determination that the release of the Memorandum would serve the public interest.

The Constitution vests the President with the authority to protect national security secrets from disclosure. As the Supreme Court has recognized, it is the President’s responsibility to classify, declassify, and control access to information bearing on our intelligence sources and methods and national defense. See, e.g., Dep’t of Navy v. Egan, 484 U.S. 518, 527 (1988). In order to facilitate appropriate congressional oversight, the Executive Branch may entrust classified information to the appropriate committees of Congress, as it
has done in connection with the Committee’s oversight activities here. The Executive Branch does so on the assumption that the Committee will responsibly protect such classified information, consistent with the laws of the United States.

The Committee has now determined that the release of the Memorandum would be appropriate. The Executive Branch, across Administrations of both parties, has worked to accommodate congressional requests to declassify specific materials in the public interest.! However, public release of classified information by unilateral action of the Legislative Branch is extremely rare and raises significant separation  of powers concerns. Accordingly, the Committee’s request to release the Memorandum is interpreted as a request for declassification pursuant to the President’s authority.

1 See, e.g., S. Rept. 114-8 at 12 (Administration of Barack Obama) (“On April 3, 2014 … the Committee agreed to send the revised Findings and Conclusions, and the updated Executive Summary of the Committee Study, to the President for declassification and public release.”); H. Rept. 107-792 (Administration of George W. Bush) (similar); E.O. 12812 (Administration of George H.W. Bush) (noting Senate resolution requesting that President provide for declassification of certain information via Executive Order).

The President understands that the protection of our national security represents his highest obligation. Accordingly, he has directed lawyers and national security staff to assess the declassification request, consistent with established standards governing the handling of classified information, including those under Section 3.1(d) of Executive Order 13526. Those standards permit declassification when the public interest in disclosure outweighs any need to protect the information. The White House review process also included input from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Department of Justice. Consistent with this review and these standards, the President has determined that declassification of the Memorandum is appropriate.

Based on this assessment and in light of the significant public interest in the memorandum, the President has authorized the declassification of the Memorandum. To be clear, the Memorandum reflects the judgments of its congressional authors. The President understands that oversight concerning matters related to the Memorandum may be continuing. Though the circumstances leading to the declassification through this process are extraordinary, the Executive Branch stands ready to work with Congress to accommodate oversight requests consistent with applicable standards and processes, including the need to protect intelligence sources and methods.

Sincerely,
~~
Donald F. McGahn II
Counsel to the President

cc: The Honorable Paul Ryan Speaker of the House of Representatives
The Honorable Adam Schiff Ranking Member, House Permanent Select
Committee on Intelligence

To: HPSCI Majority Members
From: HPSCI Majority Staff

Subject: Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Abuses at the Department
of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation

Purpose

This memorandum provides Members an update on significant facts relating to the Committee’s ongoing investigation into the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and their use of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) during the 2016 presidential election cycle. Our findings, which are detailed below, 1) raise concerns with the legitimacy and legality of certain DOJ and FBI interactions with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC), and 2) represent a troubling breakdown of legal processes established to protect the American people from abuses related to the FISA process.

Investigation Update

On October 21, 2016, DOJ and FBI sought and received a FISA probable cause order (not under Title VII) authorizing electronic surveillance on Carter Page from the FISC. Page is a u.s. citizen who served as a volunteer advisor to the Trump presidential campaign. Consistent with requirements under FISA, the application had to be first certified by the Director or Deputy Director of the FBI. It then required the approval of the Attorney General, Deputy Attorney General (DAG), or the Senate-confirmed Assistant Attorney General for-the National Security Division.

The FBI and DOJ obtained one initial FISA warrant targeting Carter Page and three FISA renewals from the FISC. As required by statute (50 U.S.C. §J805(d)(1)), a FISA order on an American citizen must be renewed by the FISC every 90 days and each renewal requires a separate finding of probable cause. Then-Director James Corney signed three FISA applications in question on behalf of the FBI, and Deputy Director Andrew McCabe signed one. Then-DAG Sally Yates, then-Acting DAG Dana Boente, and DAG Rod Rosenstein each signed one or more FISA applications on behalf of DOJ.

Due to the sensitive nature of foreign intelligence activity, FISA submissions (including renewals) before the FISC are classified. As such, the public’s confidence in the integrity of the FISA process depends on the court’s ability to hold the government to the highest standard particularly as it relates to surveillance of American citizens. However, the FISC’s rigor in protecting the rights of Americans, which is reinforced by 90-day renewals of surveillance orders, is necessarily dependent on the government’s production to the court of all material and relevant facts. This should include information potentially favorable to the target of the FISA application that is known by the government.

In the case of Carter Page, the government had at least four independent opportunities before the FISC to accurately provide an accounting of the relevant facts. However, our findings indicate that, as described below, material and relevant information was omitted.

1) The “dossier’~ compiled by Christopher Steele (Steele dossier) on behalf of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Hillary Clinton campaign formed’ an essential part of the Carter Page FISA application. Steele was a longtime FBI source who was paid over $160,000 by the DNC and Clinton campaign, via the law firm Perkins Coie and research from Fusion GPS, to obtain derogatory information on Donald Trump’s ties to Russia.

a) Neither the initial application in October 2016, nor any of the renewals, disclose or reference the role of the DNC, Clinton campaign, or. any party/campaign in funding Steele’s efforts, even though the political origins of the Steele dossier were then known to senior DOJ and FBI officials.

b) The initial FISA application notes Steele was working for a named u.s. person, but does not name Fusion GPS and principal Glenn Simpson, who was paid by a U.S. law from (Perkins Coie) representing the DNC (even though it was known by DOJ at the time that political actor~ were involved with the Steele dossier). The application does not mention Steele was ultimately working on behalf of-and paid by-the DNC and
Clinton campaign, or that the FBI had separately authorized payment to Steele for the same information.

2) The Carter Page FISA application also cited extensively a September 23,2016, Yahoo News article by. Michael Isikoff, which focuses on Page’s July 2016 trip to Moscow. , This article does not corroborate the Steele dossier because it is derived from information leaked by Steele himself to Yahoo News.

The Page FISA application incorrectly assesses that Steele did not directly provide information to Yahoo News. Steele has admitted in British court filings that he met with Yahoo News-and several other. outlets-in September 2016 at the direction of Fusion GPS.
Perkins Coie was aware of Steele’s initial media contacts because they hosted at least one meeting in Washington D.C. in 2016 with Steele and Fusion GPS where this matter was discussed.

a) Steele was suspended and then terminated as an FBI source for what the FBI defines as the most serious of violations – an unauthorized disclosure to the media of his relationship with the FBI in an October 30, 2016, Mother Jones article by David Com. Steele should have been  terminated for his previous undisclosed contacts with Yahoo and other outlets in September-before the Page application was submitted to the FISC in October-but Steele improperly concealed from and lied to the FBI about those contacts.

b) Steele’s numerous encounters with the media violated the cardinal rule of source handling-maintaining confidentiality-and demonstrated that Steele had become a less than reliable source for the FBI.

3) Before and after Steele was terminated as a source, he maintained contact with DOJ via then-Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce Ohr, a senior DOl official who worked closely with Deputy Attorneys General Yates and later Rosenstein.

Shortly after the election, the FBI began interviewing Ohr, documenting his  communications with Steele. For example, in September 2016, Steele admitted to Ohr his feelings against then-candidate Trump when Steele said he “was desperate that Donald
Trump not get elected and was passionate about him not being president.” This clear evidence of Steele’s bias was recorded by Ohr at the time and subsequently in official FBI files-but not reflected in any of the Page FISA applications.

a) During this same time period, Ohr’s wife was employed by Fusion GPS to assist in the cultivation of opposition research on Trump. Ohr later provided the FBI with all of his wife’s opposition research, paid for by the DNC and Clinton campaign via Fusion GPS. The Ohrs’ relationship with Steele and Fusion GPS was inexplicably concealed from the FISC.

4) According to the head of the FBI’s counterintelligence division, Assistant Director Bill Priestap, corroboration of the Steele dossier was in its “infancy” at the time of the initial Page FISA application.  After Steele was terminated, a source validation report conducted by an independent unit within FBI assessed Steele’s reporting as only minimally corroborated. Yet, in early January 2017, Director Corney briefed President-elect Trump on a summary of the Steele dossier, even though it was -according to his June 2017 testimony- “salacious and unverified.”

While the FISA application relied on Steele’s past record of credible reporting on other unrelated matters, it ignored or concealed his anti-Trump financial and ideological motivations. Furthermore, Deputy Director McCabe testified before the Committee in
Decemper 2017 that no surveillance warrant would have been sought from the FISC without the Steele dossier information.

5) The Page FISA application also mentions information regarding fellow Trump campaign advisor George Papadopoulos, but there is no evidence of any cooperation or conspiracy between Page and Papadopoulos. The Papadopoulos information triggered the opening of an FBI counterintelligence investigation in late July 2016 by FBI agent Pete
Strzok.

Strzok was reassigned by the Special Counsel’s Office to FBI Human Resources for improper text messages with his mistress, FBI Attorney Lisa Page (no known relation to Carter Page), where they both demonstrated a clear bias against Trump and in favor of Clinton, whom Strzok had also investigated. The Strzok/Lisa Page texts also reflect
extensive discussions about the investigation, orchestrating leaks to the media, and include a meeting with Deputy Director McCabe to discuss an “insurance” policy against President Trump’s election.

###

Again here’s the pdf version:

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This entry was posted in Conspiracy ?, Decepticons, Deep State, Dem Hypocrisy, Dept Of Justice, Election 2016, FBI, Legislation, media bias, President Trump, THE BIG UGLY, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

51 Responses to Text Version of HPSCI Memo and WH Cover Letter

  1. Everywhereguy says:

    First??? haha

    Liked by 3 people

  2. talker2u says:

    God bless you, Sundance.

    Liked by 6 people

  3. RyanG says:

    Obviously this is just the beginning of the entire “Big Ugly” plan but what still bothers me most is Mueller. He was assigned Special Counsel to investigate Russia Meddling in the 2016 election. The media thinks he was assigned to investigate Trump specifically which is not really where it started. What’s his next move? Will wee see increased pressure for him to step down? As long as he exists so does the Muh Russia.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Everywhereguy says:

      If you’re appointed IC, you have to look like you’re accomplishing something to justify the budget, the staff, your salary, etc. He’ll keep investigating and bringing charges (often un-
      or quite distantly related to the core issue for which he was appointed) till he decides that continuing will harm him, or something else stops him

      Liked by 1 person

      • RyanG says:

        I still wonder about Mueller. Again he was assigned to investigate election meddling. Everyone is focused on the Trump part of it. What about all the other loose ends like the DNC emails etc. Was that an inside job and being covered up? So many questions unanswered.

        Like

      • B Woodward says:

        Latest reports are that Mueller has persuaded Manafort’s business associate, Rick Gates, to pea bargain a deal to testify against Manafort (and Trump). (Note that there are no reports that Mueller’s investigation has found any crimes related to Trump’s collusion with Russia, which is what Rosenstein illegally charged the special counsel with.)

        There is also a report that Mueller is now pursuing some kind of charge against POTUS regarding a White House press release that was issued concerning the 2016 Trump Tower meeting with a Russian lawyer.
        http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2018/02/01/report-special-counsel-zeroing-in-on-trump-response-to-trump-tower-meeting/

        Mueller has to be desperate to find some kind of jaywalking crime that would lead to an impeachment charge against Trump before his illegal investigation is terminated and he (Mueller) and his buddies (Weissmann, Comey, Rosenstein, Holder, Hillary et al) are charged in the Uranium One crimes.

        Like

        • Kintbury54 says:

          Gates has no connection to Trump so anything he says would be heresay.

          Like

        • mitrom says:

          The Russian lawyer meeting was set up by Fusion GPS-Steele/Dems so it doesn’t matter what WH press release says. Mueller and his leftist gang are in BIG legal jeopardy and they are fooling themselves if they still think they can railroad Trump and the American people. But they are arrogant so they are going to fall hard.

          Like

    • Knight56 says:

      It seems to me that since the FBI/DoJ withheld information pertinent to the FISC decision to issue the warrant, that now it is clear the warrant would not have been issued. Being as such, since those responsible willingly and intentionally withheld, all of the Mueller investigation is based on illegally gained access to any and all information. The investigation should now be stopped and any/all information destroyed. Case in point, when the federal judge presiding over the Oregon Standoff trial threw it out and reprimanded the government over not disclosing all information pertinent to the case. Mueller must go and right now. Also, since there should never have been a Russia Collusion case, Sessions can now “UN” recuse himself and fire Rosenstein and Mueller if he so chooses and use his discretion to dismiss all charges or sentences against any and all of those affected by this ruse.

      Liked by 13 people

      • Michael says:

        I like the way you think!

        Like

      • TwoLaine says:

        Sessions had actually already fired Rosenstein, but TRUMP nominated him to his current position. He promptly wrote the excuse to fire Comey, and when President TRUMP did just that sicced Mueller on him, and som,ewhere along the line approved one of these FISC warrants.

        Here is what I want to know. Sessions said he sought counsel from within the DOJ about recusing himself from the Russia “matter”. WHO DID HE COUNSEL WITH? Do they have dirty hands?

        Liked by 3 people

      • Fishelsea says:

        Does the fisc judge/judges have any recourse on being duped with bad info. Can they take any action retroactive?

        Liked by 1 person

    • Scarlet says:

      Did Mueller know ? Did he know the entire Russia/ Trump narrative was fraudulent ? If so, did he continue with a bogus investigation in order to find something / anything ? If so, I guarantee you he never anticipated Trump would be so squeaky clean.

      Liked by 3 people

      • flounder, rebel, vulgarian, deplorable, winner says:

        Rosenstein was affirmed, 94-6.
        Session 52-47.

        Comey leaked to get a SC, and Rosenstein appointed Mueller.

        Either he was an unwitting stooge (unlikely, given the makeup of his team), or he was a party to it (the muh Russia witch hunt).

        How he takes things moving forward will reveal whether he was an unwitting stooge or a party.

        I personally think that Trump’s team has boxed him in to such an extent that he would have to admit that most if not all of his efforts are fruit of the poisonous tree. All he apparently has left is process charges, such as obstruction.

        Whether he decides to go down with the sinking ship or whether he decides to help clean up this mess in the DOJ and FBI will determine his character, and ultimately, his legacy.

        Liked by 5 people

      • TwoLaine says:

        I think he knew. He’s the cleanup guy. He’s been cleaning up for the Clinton’s and the DIMs for years.

        Liked by 1 person

    • j1u2l3i4a5 says:

      Common thought is that he will not give up until he has a victim. He is pushing for finding our president guilty of obstruction of justice. I’d like to know what our president did to make Mueller try to convict him of obstruction of justice. Does anyone have a guess?

      Like

    • peace says:

      He’s and his cronies are milking the taxpayers every day this phony investigation continues. As long as the money supply continues, he has no motive to stop. These so-called “investigations” go on and on and no one ever lands in prison.

      Like

  4. theresanne says:

    The crooked FBI/DOJ/MSM/DNC just proved what a great and honorable man our President is. They spied on him for months and could find nothing to accuse him of. Let’s turn the tables and put the spies on trial and see how they hold up under such intense scrutiny.

    Liked by 11 people

  5. Publius2016 says:

    The dea that this is all is SICK! Comey reveals himself as a liar and true traitor of liberty. Carter Page was used as a conduit for surveillance. De-humanized and weaponization as a live recorder!

    Liked by 3 people

  6. crandew says:

    I think the investigation into Trump was a sham from the very beginning. The memo outlines the whole thing (and we’ve all known it for over a year now).

    Instead of hating on Trump all the time, Americans should be mad as hell that this illegal stunt was pulled by a group of sore losers and criminals. If no one goes to prison (meaning the Dems) then this will happen again if a Dem ever gets in power, that is.

    Liked by 4 people

  7. Lion2017 says:

    A bogus dossier leads to a bogus Mueller witch hunt. When does Mueller go away?

    Liked by 6 people

  8. budmc says:

    Liked by 7 people

  9. positron1352 says:

    Mueller is out for blood. Trump’s. It’s likely that he will not stop until he successfully destroys this president. He is the Dems’ hatchet man. and most importantly, he has no graceful exit that I can see. However, I am not a lawyer. He has to save his sullied reputation by going forward and winning. Unless Trump or someone gives him an exit that allows him to save face…….

    Liked by 3 people

    • Summer says:

      You should thank Jeff Sessions. Without his acceptance of the vitally important position of the AG and subsequent ethical recusal, nothing of this would have been happening.

      Liked by 1 person

    • peace says:

      Save face? This man is pure evil and should be put away permanently so he never has an opportunity to do to someone else what he has done to Trump and the American people.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. kinthenorthwest says:

    Great Work again sundance

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Heddrick Steel says:

    It is clearly fraud upon the fisa court.

    It shows Rosenstein is anti-Trump and not neutral.

    It shows the weaponization of the FBI and DOJ against Trump’s campaign, his transition, and his presidency.

    It shows the necessity of firing Comey, who lied to Potus about an investigation against him. Indeed, it shows hostile acts against Potus.

    Liked by 5 people

  12. TwoLaine says:

    So this is why Steele was ref’d for a criminal investigation. Du-uh.

    Like

  13. ron says:

    Why is no one in the media asking where Obama is? Or demanding his appointees come out from hiding and get in front of the camera to explain this mess to the American people. Obama is hiding in the corner under a desk waiting for the storm to pass before he peeks his head up! What a Coward!

    Liked by 4 people

  14. maiingankwe says:

    I would think it has to be a bittersweet moment for Sundance and all of us Treepers here. On the one hand, Sundance has been right all along. All that he is has researched, uncovered and written has been spot on. It’s why I’m sure he’s received phone calls and maybe a few knocks on his door into how he knew all of this. If he was able to find it and put the pieces together with the help of his Treepers, than it was all out there to begin with. He did nothing wrong. He and many of the Treepers here are true patriots and only doing this in the interest and the love we have for our nation and the belief we hold in our foundation. I’m talking about our Founding Fathers and their principles for a true and just nation.

    Now we all know without a shadow of a doubt our FBI, DOJ, and last administration was/is corrupt. We also believe the Hilary campaign, dnc, msm and others are the same. Their time is coming and coming quick.

    Some may be wondering why I said bittersweet. Well, we now know we were right, however, this disregard for our laws happened in our time and under our watch. Sure, there’s not a lot we can do and Sundance and others here did spread the word and raise the alarm, it’s not what I’m talking about though. This is our nation, the United States of America, and we were raised to be proud of and for good reason. We have the best Constitution and hold more freedoms than any other country on earth. And now we know with certainty there are those wanting to destroy everything that makes us all great.

    We have a great fight ahead of us and I don’t know if we will see a civil war. What I do know is we have a president who loves all of us and our nation and it’s laws and will do everything possible to keep us together as one. I will keep my faith in him, and continue to pray and thank our Creator for giving us this chance for our children and grandchildren. We have to make this right and in order to do that we have to continue to fight.

    Thank you Sundance for bringing us together and doing all that you have done. I know deep in my heart our Founding Fathers would be ever so proud of you. I can see them all smiling down on you right now. You make them and us Treepers ever so proud and honored to stand with you. We’re not going anywhere either. You’ve got us whenever you need us.
    Be well good Treepers, stay strong,
    Ma’iingankwe

    Liked by 18 people

  15. DesertRain says:

    Yahoo News Michael Isikoff and Glenn Simpson are longtime friends.
    Simpson invites Isikoff to meet with Steel in person in September, 2016.
    Isikoffs’ article is discussed in the memo as being a source of the Page FISA.

    Isikoff has recorded his story of the meeting with Steele…

    Liked by 1 person

  16. James F says:

    Wasn’t there supposed to be a text message in the memo with “secret society”references?

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Concerned Virginian says:

    My guess is that Robert Mueller by now has his marching orders from Hillary Clinton (with Barack Obama in the background) to destroy President Donald J. Trump by any means he can find: because if Mueller fails, the ClintonMachine/ObamaMachine/DeepState hit unit will make damn sure Mueller falls on his sword (and this may well be literally or figuratively).
    Robert Mueller is a marked man. He now has to “produce” for his masters—or he’ll be “out”.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. rmnewt says:

    Sundance, the security classification issue. Now that we see the memo consider the following guidance regarding classification from ODNI https://www.dni.gov/files/documents/FOIA/DF-2015-00044%20(Doc1).pdf p.9

    (U) The Order, Section l .7(a) mandates that information shall not be classified, continue to be maintained as classified or fail to be declassified in order to:
    • Conceal violations of law, inefficiency, or administrative error;
    • Prevent embarrassment to a person, organization, or agency;
    • Restrain competition; or
    • Prevent or delay the release of information that does not require protection in the interest of the national security.

    When you look at the content, other than confirming rumors, the memo describes known facts of the FISA process and fact-based conclusions that conceal violations of the law by FBI/DOJ members, embarrass people and agencies…. I challenge those who delayed and argue against release to justify the security issues when there is clear violation of the classification guidance referenced above.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. scott467 says:

    “1) raise concerns with the legitimacy and legality of certain DOJ and FBI interactions with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC), and 2) represent a troubling breakdown of legal processes established to protect the American people from abuses related to the FISA process.”

    _____________

    “concerns”?

    “legitimacy and legality”?

    “troubling breakdown”?

    If they couched the brazen lawlessness any more softly the writers of this memo could be charged with criminal negligence and felony misrepresentation.

    I am sick to death of the euphemisms and downplaying of the rank lawlessness and corruption of our government.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. scott467 says:

    What does the ‘memo’ reveal, that we haven’t all been talking about here (and all over the Internet) for the last several months?

    I kept hearing that even people who follow these events closely will be SHOCKED (shocked, I tell you!) at the contents of the ‘memo’.

    Not shocked.

    Not shocked at all.

    More like Capt. Renault, discovering there was gambling going on in Casablanca.

    Liked by 2 people

  21. AH_C says:

    And according to Trump, this is just the start of further investigations. More rabbit holes to follow.

    Liked by 2 people

  22. xcontra says:

    I would like you guys to sort this out: how did the HPSCI get Priestap’s assessment in item 4? “According to the head of the FBI’s counterintelligence division, Assistant Director Bill Priestap…”
    Was he questioned by HPSCI at some point and it did not make it into the news? Or is this one of the tidbits that caused DOJ/FBI to bray like a donkey this past week about releasing classified information? Or did Priestap flip?

    Like

  23. zucccchini says:

    Don’t care what the Kabul Dem Media says. The silent majority of the working folks know exactly what is going on and are waiting in anticipation of the rest. Its like a series played out on TV with episodes one a month but ads adding to the build up. Who does the Dems think heir fooling? No doubt their base.

    Like

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