WH lawyer, Kelly speak before Russia meetings

29 May, 2018, 21:03 | Author: Sue Mclaughlin
  • Rod Rosenstein just fired back at Donald Trump with a dictionary definition

Giuliani's public negotiation over terms of an interview focuses on the use of a government informant who approached members of Trump's 2016 campaign in a possible bid to glean intelligence on Russian efforts to sway his race against Democrat Hillary Clinton.

More generally, Comey said, "The word "spy" is not an accurate characterization in any case of the FBI's use of confidential human sources, which are a critical tool in all of our investigations - people telling us things that they know".

FBI Director Christopher Wray, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who oversees Special Counsel Robert Mueller's Russian Federation probe, held two unusual classified briefings for senior lawmakers of both parties in the wake of the Republican president's claim.

"The whole thing was a mistake and should never have happened", Giuliani told the Associated Press, adding that the Justice Department should acknowledge the error. And he's still got two and a half years to go.

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said Nunes and the other members of the intelligence committees are simply doing their work as appropriate. The deputy attorney general relented after Trump's demand that the Justice Department comply. They're willfully abetting the dismantling of our democratic institutions, threatening our democracy at its very core. As someone who is old enough to remember the impeachment of President Richard Nixon, I worry that we are now at that point, and we may be facing "civil war" over impeachment of President Trump, which nearly certainly will happen if the Democrats take back the House of Representatives this fall.

The president has suggested otherwise in a storm of tweets, including one on Thursday proclaiming that "SPYGATE could be one of the biggest scandals in history!"

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The Democrats who took part in the meetings on Thursday - House and Senate Minority Leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer and the top Democrats on the House and Senate intelligence committees, Adam Schiff and Warner - released a collective statement rejecting Trump's claim. If Obama and the Democrats put a spy in his campaign to undercut his chances, they made a small strategic error by not mentioning anything publicly before votes were cast. Trump has railed about him for days, tweeting just before the meetings Thursday, "Large dollars were paid to the Spy, far beyond normal". But it seems that even before he became president, people around the world knew that Donald Trump was a man who could be bought.

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of SC was not in the meetings but, in a radio interview Friday, broke with the president to say a "confidential informant is not a spy", though he cautioned about investigations into campaigns.

This is not the first time Trump has made broad claims about the investigation. A White House lawyer, Emmet Flood, and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly showed up for both briefings, although the White House had earlier said it would keep a distance, drawing criticism from Democrats. "He should know what is discussed", said Giuliani, a former mayor of New York City and a former federal prosecutor. The request for the latest documents are the latest in a series of subpoenas to the Justice Department for sensitive information. Giuliani said the president's legal team would wait until seeing a report on the substance of information with lawmakers, shared in two separate meetings.

Now, as a rule, the Justice Department doesn't like to share information about an ongoing investigation.

That was untrue. White House attorney Emmett Flood attended the meeting with Nunes. It's hard to square that claim with 1) Trump's repeated insistence that the Russia investigation began only after he won as an excuse for the Democrats' loss, and 2) the fact that America only learned about the investigation into Russian collusion after voting had already occurred.

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