• So Why Did Trump Fire Comey?

    March 27, 2019

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    Posted in: Democracy, Trump

     
     
    A media themelet is Trump fired then-FBI director James Comey because Comey would not let Michael Flynn off the hook. Flynn was caught in a perjury trap, lying about a legally-allowed meeting he held with the Russian ambassador. The FBI had the meet under surveillance and knew Flynn was not telling the truth later in an interview. Comey’s firing also forms a core tenet of the “obstruction truther” movement.

     

    We know a lot more about what was going on then now than we did then. Time for some thinking out loud.

    I think the Comey firing is tied to the Christopher Steele dossier. We may someday learn Trump fired Comey because the FBI acted on the dossier to surveil Trump’s team from July 2016 to January 2017 without giving Trump a defensive briefing the Russians might be inside his campaign, signaling the FBI wanted to take Trump down, not protect him or America. No president could have confidence in his FBI director after that.

    There has been no discussion as to why, in possession of information they seemed to believe showed the Russians were running a global full-court press to recruit inside Trump’s inner circle, Trump was never offered a defensive briefing by the FBI. Such a warning – hey, you may not know it, but here’s how you are in danger – is common inside government. But in Trump’s case it never happened and no one seems to want to formally ask (say at a Senate hearing) why.

    That the FBI withheld the dossier from Trump, did not provide him with a defensive warning, and then used the information to collect against him did happen, and Comey was in charge. It is a shameful episode that harkens back to the J. Edgar Hoover days of an FBI that used its power to manipulate government. While referring by name only to Comey’s equally shameful handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation(s), Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in his letter recommending Comey be fired wrote:

    The Federal Bureau of Investigation has long been regarded as our nation’s premier federal investigative agency. Over the past year, however, the FBI’s reputation and credibility have suffered substantial damage, and it has affected the entire Department of Justice. That is deeply troubling to many Department employees and veterans, legislators and citizens.

    Donald Ayer, who served as Deputy Attorneys General under President HW Bush, along with former Justice Department officials, was “astonished and perplexed” by [Comey’s] decision to “break with longstanding practices followed by officials of both parties during past elections.” Ayer’s own letter noted, “Perhaps most troubling… is the precedent set by this departure from the Department’s widely-respected, non-partisan traditions.”

    Both men wrote only of Comey-Clinton, but one wonders if they did not have Comey-Steele-Trump in mind as well.

    On May 11, 2017, in an NBC News interview two days after firing Comey, Trump said perhaps more to the point of why he got rid of Comey “I said to myself — I said, you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story. It’s an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should’ve won.”

    The media at the time was emphatic Trump was referring to firing Comey to end the investigation, when in hindsight another explanation is possible. Trump didn’t fire Comey to end the investigation; anyone would be aware the new FBI director or a Special Counsel would continue it. Trump may have fired Comey for his actions dating back to 2016.

     

    My guess is history will show by January 2017 the FBI likely knew there was nothing to the dossier (one of the first things to read for in the full Mueller report is a clue as to how early he came to understand there was no collusion.) It was only then Comey unveiled the dossier to then president-elect Trump in a 1:1 brief in Trump Tower. That was on January 6, 2017, some three months after using the dossier in part to obtain a FISA warrant against Trump aide Carter Page. Comey almost certainly mentioned while Trump may not have heard of it, the dossier had already been widely shared inside the media, the State Department, and the intelligence community.

    No one really knows what was said in that meeting, but we do know that after holding the dossier since summer 2016 four days after the Trump-Comey dossier meeting Buzzfeed published the whole document and the world learned about the pee tape and you had to explain what Golden Showers are to your mom. Many believe someone in the intel community gave “permission” to the media, signaling Brennan, Clapper, Hayden, Comey, et al, would be making supporting statements that the dossier “could be true.”

    It is possible Trump, paranoid, embarrassed, and defensive, saw Comey’s moves in their January 2017 meeting as a blackmail attempt. Or at least a show of force — look what the FBI can do if you make trouble. Comey’s firing may have had a lot more to do with the dossier than it did with Michael Flynn.

     

    That leaks about Flynn and the Russian ambassador, believed to be from the Obama White House after advisors Susan Rice and Samantha Powers unmasked the identities of various American persons inside intercepts collected incidentally, only added to a sense of paranoia.

    Jeff Sessions was similarly incidentally surveilled, as was former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, whose conversations were picked up as part of a FISA warrant issued against Trump associate Carter PagePaul Manafort and Richard Gates were also the subjects of FISA-warranted surveillance: they were surveilled in 2014, the case was dropped for lack of evidence, and then they were re-surveilled after they joined the Trump team and became more interesting to the state. We now know Michael Cohen, Trump’s own lawyer, was surveilled for years in an operation that walked very close to violating the once-sacrosanct attorney-client privilege. Until more FISA paperwork is released, we do not know the full extent the FBI penetrated the Trump campaign.

    Officials on the National Security Council revealed that Trump himself may also have been swept up in the surveillance of foreign targets. Devin Nunes, chair of the House Intelligence Committee, claims multiple communications by Trump transition staff were inadvertently picked up. Trump officials were monitored by British GCHQ with the information shared with their NSA partners.
     
    Trump’s March 2017 claims to have been “wiretapped” by Obama, ridiculed by the media at the time, take on new credibility. That surveillance was spearheaded by James Comey and Trump fired him for it.
     
    BONUS:
    A good guess is Mueller took over as Special Counsel already knowing the dossier itself was garbage, but that it had done its job(s) to inflame the media and of course secure the FISA warrants. On Day One Mueller had the intel take from those warrants, which showed no collusion, on his desk. Mueller is a careful guy, so my speculation is he needed a month or two to assure himself. I’ll call it summer 2017 when he had a pretty good idea he was not going to uncover any smoking gun.

      

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    Copyright © 2019. All rights reserved. The views expressed here are solely those of the author(s) in their private capacity.

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  • Recent Comments

    • Rich Bauer said...

      1

      So after Comey fucked Hillarious with his 11th hour revelation that the FBI was investigating her again, he then concocts this elaborate scheme to take down Trump. Did he have a guilty conscience he fucked Hillarious or was secretly working to install Sick Pence?

      03/27/19 11:17 AM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      2

      Big media will not- cannot- admit to being highly partisan and engaging in advocacy publishing in going after Trump. Being seen as wrong (fallible) is economical and biological suicide. Desirable females seek to bed down with infallible mates. That is the biological blueprint of this orb. Gotta role with that.

      03/27/19 4:29 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      3

      That would be the same clowns who spewed the lies that got us in the quagmire in Iraq.

      03/27/19 4:32 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      4

      Sorry: roll not role. But Bauer it should be those not that and also of Iraq not in Iraq. I welcome any grammatical corrections.

      03/27/19 5:43 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      5

      Big media is still at it. They are like that doofus Peter Strzok bragging to his paramour with, “Don’t worry baby, that ain’t gonna happen (Trump winning) cause I’m the man!
      This post Mueller report era is already very tedious. Democrats and Hillary lovers need to impeach Trump to recover their self respect. PVB, could you set up some sort of workshop to help the afflicted?

      03/28/19 5:10 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      6

      So we all agree the Steele dossier is shit and the Russians had absolutely nothing to do with hacking anyone’s emails. So the Mueller report should be released unredacted immediately. If not, Russia, if you are listening, please find the Mueller report and release it to the media. I am certain they will be very grateful. We all need to see the truth…except when we don’t, like a video of some 77 year old Patriot getting a handjob.

      03/30/19 9:02 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      7

      And no, JP, that is NOT how they make Kraft cheese.

      03/30/19 9:14 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      8

      Peter,

      You neglected the obvious. Trump fired Comey as part of his grand plan with QAnon to overthrow the Deep State and kill all those sick pedophiles who eat children.

      03/30/19 11:22 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      9

      Which really was part of his plan to make money off the idiots who believe this shit.

      Coming soon: How To Make Money Off QAnon Fools and Trumpists by Donald Trump. Should be a Best Seller

      03/30/19 12:19 PM | Comment Link

    • traven said...

      10

      I think the saying goes “the friend of my friend is my friend. The friend of my enemy is my enemy “ I am open to suggestions if this quote is incorrect but it does suggest my real feelings. The FBI has never been the friend of an open Democracy but rather the friend of existing power. J. Edgar Hoover’s spying and suppression of left wing unions and organizations continuing on to today’s harassment of civil rights protest organizations like Black Lives Matter and anti fracking protests, etc.by the FBI is a reality augmented by our overblown “intelligence” bureaucracy.
      . So if Comey et all saw in Trump a threat to our system and decided to kneecap him I find no fault. The enemy of the enemy of our democracy is a friend of convenience at a time of great peril to our democracy.

      03/30/19 12:40 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      11

      The monolithic FBI died with Hoover. Comey realized his actions, not approved by the DOJ, contributed to the election of the FlynnFlam Man. When Trumpie put the pressure on Comey to go easy on Flynn it offended Comey’s neutrality…imagined or otherwise.

      03/30/19 12:58 PM | Comment Link

    • The Primordial Ooze of the Collusion Conspiracy – Live Trendy News said...

      12

      […] a global full-court press to recruit inside Trump’s inner circle, Trump was never offered a defensive briefing by the FBI. Such a warning—hey, you are in danger—is common inside government. But in Trump’s […]

      04/1/19 1:51 PM | Comment Link

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