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Tag: donald trump

Trump Rips Into Justice Department/FBI for Not Warning Him About Manafort

Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort.

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

President Donald Trump, continuing on his Twitter tear, on Sunday questioned why the Justice Department or FBI did not notify him during the campaign that Paul Manafort was under investigation, insisting that Manafort would have never been hired if he had known, CNN reports.

“As only one of two people left who could become President, why wouldn’t the FBI or Department of ‘Justice’ have told me that they were secretly investigating Paul Manafort (on charges that were 10 years old and had been previously dropped) during my campaign?” Trump wrote on Twitter Sunday morning. “Should have told me!”

In a second tweet, CNN reports, Trump downplayed Manafort’s role on his campaign, saying the Republican strategist “came into the campaign very late and was with us for a short period of time,” but “we should have been told that Comey and the boys were doing a number on him, and he wouldn’t have been hired!”

Rep. Adam Schiff’s Letter to the FBI Praises The “Hard Working Men and Women at the Bureau’

Rep. Adam Schiff.

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin writes a column titled: “A letter to the FBI that would be unnecessary under any other president.”

She writes about ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam B. Schiff (Calif.), who wrote an open letter to the FBI on Wednesday, ostensibly voicing his support for the men and women who’ve been under a partisan assault from Republicans on the Hill, as well as from the president.

“In reality, it was a devastating indictment of Republicans’ handling of the Russia investigation,” writes Rubin, who is considered “center-right” in her political views, but has been a regular critic of  President Donald Trump.

Schiff began by defending the exemplary work of the FBI in its various law enforcement capacities. He continued:

In recent weeks, the FBI has come under unprecedented and unjustified criticism. FBI agents have been slandered as “stormtroopers” for executing lawful search warrants and described as part of a corrupt “deep state” for pursuing a lawful counterintelligence investigation into Russia’s interference in our elections.

The president’s allies have put forward a succession of attacks against the FBI and the intelligence agencies that responded to Russia’s interference in the 2016 elections. Each has withered under scrutiny, but they have served their purpose of casting a shadow on the origins of the counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign, and ultimately Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s work….

I have not always agreed with the decisions of the FBI, either as an assistant U.S. attorney or as a member of Congress, and nor would I expect to. But I have never questioned the integrity of the hard working men and women at the Bureau and for a simple reason; you have never given me cause to do so. The American people have entrusted the FBI with the tremendous task of enforcing the law, fairly and without favor. That trust has been well placed.

I can assure you that the vast majority of the American people share my high regard for the FBI, and so do my colleagues, Democrats and Republicans. While I wish that more of them felt free to say so, the FBI is widely respected on the Hill for its professionalism, talent, and integrity. Despite the static that you may hear from time to time, do not for a moment believe that it is otherwise.

Donald Trump’s Persistent Campaign Against Federal Law Enforcement and the Intelligence Agencies

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

President Donald Trump’s attacks on federal law enforcement and the intelligence agencies have been persistent and consistent since taking office.

Natasha Bertrand of The Atlantic writes:  

In the 22 months since the FBI launched its counterintelligence investigation into potential coordination between members of Trump’s campaign and Russia, Trump has attacked his own intelligence and law-enforcement communities far more often than he has condemned Moscow for its election interference. The president has chided the FBI, former FBI Director James Comey, Mueller, the Russia “witch hunt,” and the “deep state” in more than four dozen tweets since April alone. He used Twitter to criticize Russian President Vladimir Putin for the first and only time on April 8. On March 21, Trump tweeted: “Getting along with Russia (and others) is a good thing, not a bad thing.” On April 2, he called the FBI and Justice Department’s desire to withhold sensitive information related to the ongoing investigation “an embarrassment to our country.”

Former CIA Director John Brennan—a frequent Trump critic who saw early intelligence about Russian attempts to interfere in the 2016 Presidential election and has landed in the president’s crosshairs—told me that this administration’s posture toward the intelligence community stands in “stark contrast” to what he experienced while working under former Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama. “They looked upon me as representing the views and concerns of the intelligence community,” Brennan said of the former presidents. “I was frequently challenged, but it was always done respectfully. That stands in stark contrast to what I’ve seen of this administration from the outside, and during the campaign.”

Ex-FBI Director James Comey: ‘Facts Matter’ Regarding Informant

Ex-FBI Director James Comey

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Former FBI Director James Comey, who headed the agency at the time of the 2016 presidential campaign, defended the bureau against attacks by President Donald Trump and his allies.

Comey says the  attacks on the U.S. law enforcement agency “will do lasting damage to our country,” Politico reports.

“Facts matter. The FBI’s use of Confidential Human Sources (the actual term) is tightly regulated and essential to protecting the country,” the former bureau chief wrote on Twitter. “Attacks on the FBI and lying about its work will do lasting damage to our country.”

“Dangerous time when our country is led by those who will lie about anything, backed by those who will believe anything, based on information from media sources that will say anything. Americans must break out of that bubble and seek truth,” he added.

Paul Manafort To Ask Judge to Toss Evidence Seized in FBI Search

Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort.

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort is battling it out in federal court.

On Wednesday, he plans to ask a federal judge to suppress evidence seized by FBI agents working for Special Counsel Robert Mueller, saying they violated the U.S. Constitution’s ban on unreasonable searches and seizures, Reuters reports.

Manafort’s lawyers are expected to claim in court that FBI agents unlawfully conducted an initial warrantless search of a storage locker housing documents from his consulting company by improperly getting a low-level staffer to unlock it and let a special agent look around, Reuters writes.

James Clapper Says Spy Was Helping Look Into Russian Influence During Campaign

James Clapper

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, appearing Tuesday on “The View,”  said a spy during the 2016 campaign was there for Russian meddling purposes and President Donald Trump should be happy such a person existed, Real Clear Politics reports.

“With the informant business, well, the point here is the Russians,” Clapper said of the controversy over a spy infiltrating the Trump presidential campaign. “Not spying on the campaign but what are the Russians doing? And in a sense, unfortunately, what they were trying to do is protect our political system and protect the campaign.”

“But the FBI started to look into Trump’s ties to Russia in the summer of 2016. Trump tweeted that this spring — this spying, rather, this spying that he claims is spying, other people say it’s a whistleblower or informant. He says it’s spying, it’s bigger than Watergate. So I ask you, was the FBI spying on Trump’s campaign?” Co-host Joy Behar asked.

“No, they were not,” Clapper answered. “They were spying on, a term I don’t particularly like, but on what the Russians were doing. Trying to understand were the Russians infiltrating, trying to gain access, trying to gain leverage or influence which is what they do.”

“Well, why doesn’t like that? He should be happy,” Behar said.

“He should be,” Clapper responded.

Matthew Miller: Rod Rosenstein’s Decision Shows ‘The System is Failing’

Matthew Miller was director of the Justice Department’s public affairs office from 2009 to 2011.

By Matthew Miller
For the Washington Post

Rod Rosenstein

President Trump on Sunday launched his most direct attack on the Justice Department’s independence since he fired FBI Director James B. Comey, taking to Twitter to “hereby demand” that it open a counter-investigation of the probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Trump’s demand crossed every institutional norm that has long safeguarded the Justice Department’s independence. The president was calling for an investigation into both political opponents from the former administration and career law enforcement agents, without evidence of wrongdoing, for the obvious purpose of undermining a criminal probe into his own conduct and that of his associates. Trump was clearly testing the limits of the system that constrains presidential interference with the Justice Department. And the response so far — including Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein’s decision to refer the matter to the department’s inspector general — shows that the system is failing.

There is no legitimate justification for asking the inspector general to investigate a hyped-up claim that the FBI inappropriately infiltrated the Trump campaign. Just as in February there was no legitimate justification for Attorney General Jeff Sessions, in response to claims by House Republicans, asking the inspector general to investigate alleged — and debunked — abuses by the department in securing a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant against former Trump aide Carter Page.

To read the full column click here.

James Clapper: Trump Leading a ‘Very Disturbing Assault on Independence of the Department of Justice’

James Clapper on CNN

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Echoing what former acting Attorney General Sally Yates said the other day, ex-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper tells CNN Monday that President Donald Trump is  leading “a very disturbing assault on the independence of the Department of Justice.”

“When the President — this president or any president — tries to use the Department of Justice as kind of a private investigatory body, that’s not good for the country,” Clapper told CNN’s Chris Cuomo.

Clapper was reacting to Trump’s demand over the weekend that the Justice Department “look into” whether the FBI or Justice Department planted a spy in his presidential campaign following reports that the bureau dispatched a confidential source to speak with some campaign aides about possible ties to Russia.

Clapper tells CNN the FBI’s use of confidential informants is a  “a legitimate activity, an important one, on the part of the FBI. They use informants and have strict rules and protocols on this.”

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