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Thomas Gallatin / June 4, 2020

Rosenstein Squirms and Deflects in Senate Hearing

Former deputy AG admits FISA warrants against Carter Page should never have been issued.

In a scene reminiscent of Adam’s response to God in the Garden of Eden, former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein sat before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday and sought to shift the blame for his bad oversight decisions that allowed for the partisan Russia-collusion hoax to continue unabated. Tellingly, Rosenstein essentially agreed that the FBI’s investigation into Donald Trump’s presidential campaign should not have happened, even as he did nothing to stop it. In fact, Rosenstein did much to further the charade with the appointment of Robert Mueller as special counsel.

Notably, one of the biggest issues that Republican senators hammered Rosenstein for was his reauthorization of the FISA warrant application to continue surveillance against Trump’s former campaign adviser, Carter Page. Republicans wanted to know why Rosenstein would have signed off on the FISA warrant application given the fact that it relied solely upon what the FBI knew was a bogus Christopher Steele dossier.

Rosenstein squirmed, complaining about having so many FISA applications he had to sign. He even admitted, “I’m not sure I read every page, but I was familiar with what was in it.” He then added that the application “was actually fairly persuasive, and it had already been approved three times. This was just a reauthorization.”

A clearly unimpressed Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) challenged Rosenstein, asking, “Was there any more important case the Department of Justice had than an investigation into whether the president of the United States is a Russian asset, colluding against the United States?” Cruz further blasted Rosenstein as being either “complicit in the wrongdoing, which I don’t believe was the case, or … your performance of your duties was grossly negligent.”

As we’ve previously observed, that complicity involved Rosenstein’s 2017 memo in which he used conspiracy theories taken from the bogus Steele dossier to establish and broaden the scope of Mueller’s investigation. Far from being a law man concerned with following hard evidence, Rosenstein seemingly allowed the popular narrative — or allegiance to the deep state — to dictate his actions, rather than question it. He had plenty of opportunities to stop the partisan charade, as John Solomon astutely observes, but instead Rosenstein ensured that the witch hunt would continue.

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