In our opinion the content of the diary by former FBI Director James Comey, as outlined in what has formally been called “The Comey Memos”, is devastating to the U.S. Department of Justice and FBI. How do we know? Because the FBI is fighting like hell to keep even descriptions of the memo(s) content from becoming public.
Here’s something you don’t see CTH say every day…. We’re on the side of CNN !
Within that courtroom fight Mueller’s lead FBI agent David Archey wrote a series of declarations to the court describing the content of the memos and arguing why they should be kept classified.
The FOIA fight shifted.
The plaintiff, CNN, argued for public release of the content of the FBI agent’s descriptions, now known as the “Archey Declarations”.
Hat Tip Techno Fog for the latest court filing update. As you can see from the filing graphic, the DOJ is requesting more time to file a response to a motion that would force them to release the “Archey Declarations” [detailed explanations of what’s inside the Comey Memos].
After a lengthy back-and-forth legal contest, on June 7th Judge James E Boasberg agreed to allow the FBI to keep the Comey memo content hidden, but instructed the DOJ/FBI to release the content of the Archey Declarations.
On July 5th, the U.S. Department of Justice -under Attorney General Bill Barr- while waiting until the last minute (28 days since prior ruling), filed a motion [full pdf below] to block the release of the Archey Declarations, despite the June 7th court order.
On July 19th, CNN filed a motion against the FBI and DOJ to force the release of the Archey Declarations (full pdf below).
On July 25th, today, the DOJ filed a response requesting more time to reply.
The FBI wants these declarations hidden.
The DOJ is requested more time, August 2nd, 2019, to respond to the CNN motion.
CNN wants the June 7th ruling enforced and the Archey Declarations, which describe the content of the Comey memos, released. So do we.
David Archey was the FBI lead agent on Robert Mueller’s team. Archey replaced Peter Strzok when Strzok was removed. Yes, Archey’s declarations might possibly describe material evidence the DOJ (either Durham or Howowitz) are using in ongoing matters. However, THIS IS IMPORTANT – the DOJ and FBI have never made that assertion.
Therefore the argument that the DOJ and FBI are holding some current investigative interest in keeping the Comey memos hidden is null on face value.
That’s why we support CNN’s position.
BACKGROUND – Again, if transparency in conduct of the DOJ and FBI during 2016 is the expressed goal of Attorney General Bill Barr, then his current department fighting to keep descriptions of FBI memorandum hidden from public review runs exactly counter to that intent.
This DOJ activity does not bode well for a narrative of Bill Barr is an honest broker. This is an example of how to cover-up material that is damaging to the institution.
To be fair, Attorney General Bill Barr may not be aware the United States Department of Justice Civil Division, Federal Programs Branch, is fighting this court ordered release.
However, the DOJ Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division is Jody Hunt. That name might be familiar to you because Jody Hunt was Jeff Sessions former chief-of-staff.
Asst. AG Jody Hunt most certainly knows his office is fighting to keep the FBI descriptions of the Comey memos hidden from the public.
Despite the original media FOIA lawsuit coming from CNN -vs- DOJ, there is no-one in the MSM covering this story. Here is the July 5th DOJ filing:
Here’s the background on the June 7th, 2019, ruling as we shared at the time:
Judge Boasberg was deciding what could be publicly released, meaning current redactions removed, based on two connected events: (#1) The content of the Comey Memos; and (#2) the declarations of lead FBI agent for Robert Mueller’s special counsel, David Archey, in describing those memos. CNN had filed a lawsuit to gain full access.
[Note: the descriptions of the Comey memos by FBI agent David Archey are known as the “Archey Declarations” – Read Here.]
For those who may not be aware, there are so many memos (dozens) when assembled they seem to make up an actual diary of moment-by-moment events, during the FBI investigation of Donald Trump, as documented by FBI Director James Comey.
♦ In the issue of the redactions within the Comey Memos, the judge doesn’t remove them. Some are ordered to be removed, some are approved to stay in place. The Comey memo aspect, and the redaction decision, is basically a splitting of the baby 50/50. It will be interesting, but meh, maybe not too much detail. – CNN ARTICLE
The issues argued by the FBI lawyers to keep the Comey memos hidden surround sources and methods. The judge generally agreed to the potential for compromise, but also outlined several sections of redactions within the Comey memos where that argument doesn’t hold up. [The judge has read the fully unredacted memo content.]
♦ However, on the issue of the Archey Declarations there’s an opportunity for some very interesting information to surface. Here’s an example of currently existing redactions within the Archey Declarations:
And stunningly, yes, STUNNINGLY, Judge Boasberg has ordered the Archey declarations to be fully released to the public WITHOUT REDACTIONS. See pages 34 and 35 of the ruling.
CTH remains very interested.
The Comey Memos cut to the heart of the issues Special Counsel Robert Mueller said were outside his purview. The Comey Memos describe the FBI operation and intent during the 2016 election. The Archey Declarations describe the Comey Memos.
The content could be very revealing.