President Donald Trump demanded the “immediate declassification” of highly controversial documents which could prove exactly how Barack Obama’s Department of Justice was illegally hijacked and “weaponized” to tilt the 2016 election in Hillary Clinton’s favor. Top Democrats are unconstitutionally defying the release.
“I’m sorry,” attorney Will Chamberlain tells the Democratic half of the “gang of eight” who are causing trouble. “President Trump has not issued a request to the intelligence agencies that they declassify this information, he has issued an order.” In other words, step away from the magic marker.
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Senator Mark Warner (D-Va.), and Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) hysterically signed a letter demanding that the Department of Justice illegally defy the President’s order, the Gateway Pundit reports.
The top two ranking members from both houses and both parties making up the full gang were briefed on the redacted contents earlier this year. The Republican side of the table have been suggesting ever since that the whole inquisition run by Robert Mueller was “tainted by anti-Trump bias” long before it ever got started.
“President Trump has issued an order to his subordinates to declassify certain information related to the Russia investigation. He has plenary declassification authority as the President of the United States. The FBI and DOJ are subordinate to him. Congress does not get to order Executive Branch officials to defy a president.”
That, Chamberlain insists, “is actually a constitutional crisis.” Republicans should think about “taking action.”
The Democrats’ anxiety is evident but they don’t have a legal leg to stand on. As Chamberlain points out, Congress and the Administrative branch “are equal,” but the Federal Bureau of Investigation, DOJ, and intelligence community all work for the President, not Congress.
The president, Gateway Pundit notes, “has absolute authority under Article 2 of the Constitution to order any Executive Branch agency to declassify anything.”
President Trump ordered the declassification of all text messages related to the Russia investigation, the rest of the Carter Page wiretap warrant application, and interview reports that were used in court to get the warrant and have it renewed.
The Democrats rushed to circumvent the Constitution and put together the letter to the Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher Wray.
Rep. Adam Schiff issued a statement Monday, insinuating “President Trump, in a clear abuse of power, has decided to intervene in a pending law enforcement investigation by ordering the selective release of materials.”
Actually, many recognize that Schiff is breaking the rule of law.
The intelligence agencies are happy to play along with the Democrats and, at least for now, they have a little bit of authority to do that.
They will make “proposed redactions,” attempting to keep at least some of the information from the public, “three people familiar with the matter” told Bloomberg. Those recommendations will likely be overridden by the White House.
The FBI plans to drag their feet with “a methodical review.” After all, since they have to go through every one of the Strzok-Page text messages as well as those from James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Bruce Ohr and others, they “can’t offer a timeline for finishing.”
Eventually, the Justice Department and the bureau will send something over to the Director of National Intelligence, Dan Coats. He’s supposed to “assemble all the material into a package and hand it over to the White House,” Bloomberg’s sources claim.
The justification they are using to hide embarrassing details is that “the agencies want to guard against revealing classified sources and methods,” which is the standard excuse used for everything.
A statement issued by the Justice Department shows they are at least acting like they are going to comply. “The department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are already working with the Director of National Intelligence to comply with the president’s order.”
“When the president issues such an order, it triggers a declassification review process that is conducted by various agencies within the intelligence community, in conjunction with the White House counsel, to seek to ensure the safety of America’s national security interests,” a spokesman relates.
The FBI actually started work on the job a while ago, in anticipation of such a request, Bloomberg reports. The bureau has “already been reviewing whether and how to release more of a previously secret warrant application to eavesdrop on Carter Page.”
The low level Trump campaign “foreign policy adviser” was singled out as an easy target by the intelligence agencies. Despite the fact they were certain he was the “Russian connection” all by himself, “Page hasn’t been accused of wrongdoing.” He swears up and down “that while he had conversations with Russian officials, he wasn’t an agent of the Russian government.”
The DOJ is really sweating over divulging the interviews with Bruce Ohr. They know they have to give his up but appear to be trying to hide them and maybe others. They claim Trump’s order is “confusing.”
As Bloomberg writes, “part of the White House statement caused confusion because it asked for “all FBI reports of interviews prepared in connection with all Carter Page FISA applications.” That seems clear enough, all means all.
“The Justice Department is interpreting that request to mean information about the use of a confidential informant during the early parts of the investigation,” one of the sources declared. That seems to indicate they want to limit disclosure only to what Christopher Steele told them.
Bloomberg wanted to know if any of the officials were thinking about quitting over President Trump’s demands. “It’s too early to say,” one source indicated. He hopes that before it comes down to that, “Trump could ask the agencies to go back and scrub the redacted material further.”
If Wray or Coats do decide to refuse cooperation, President Trump has the clear authority to fire them both on the spot. He can keep firing their replacements until he gets one willing to do the job.