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Douglas Andrews / Aug. 25, 2020

The FBI's Despicable Double Standard

The Obama DOJ had one standard for Hillary Clinton and another for Donald Trump.

You’ve heard it before: If it weren’t for double standards, the Left wouldn’t have any standards at all. But who knew this adage also applied to the FBI?

Well, Senator Lindsey Graham for one. As Daniel Chaitin reports, “The South Carolina Republican said FBI materials, which he unveiled on Sunday, show an FBI field office wanted to pursue a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant in 2015 related to an ‘operative’ believed to be connected to a foreign government trying to influence Clinton’s campaign by ‘illegally’ funneling millions of dollars but were stopped [by] the bureau’s [leadership], which demanded Clinton’s team receive a defensive briefing about ‘the problem so she could fix it.’”

On its surface, the FBI’s action here isn’t objectionable. To the contrary, it’s a standard practice for the agency to warn Americans if it suspects a foreign agent in their midst. And it makes good sense. The trouble is, James Comey and the rest of the FBI’s Seventh Floor leadership team didn’t afford this same courtesy to Donald Trump. In fact, they did just the opposite. When the bureau claimed to have suspected Trump campaign adviser Carter Page of being a Russian agent, it ignored the protocol of a defensive briefing and instead went straight for a FISA warrant that, if approved, would allow the bureau (and, by extension, the Obama administration and the Clinton campaign) to spy on the Trump campaign.

Which is precisely what they did. The FBI thus applied a different standard of justice to Donald Trump than it did to Hillary Clinton. This allowed the bureau to spy on the Trump campaign by electronically surveilling the communications of one of its advisers, which it did by falsifying evidence against him and intentionally withholding exculpatory evidence from the FISA court.

This is the stuff of banana republics, and it should stick like tar to the Obama administration.

Think back to March 2017, just a little more than a month into President Trump’s term, when he tweeted that the Obama administration had spied on him. Remember how the mainstream media hooted and hollered and guffawed at the “baseless” charges, the “simply false” “nonsense,” the “wild accusations,” the “unsubstantiated claims” of that mad tinfoil hatter in the Oval Office?

Well, last month, as George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley noted, “Obama and Biden were aware of the investigation, as were the administration officials who publicly ridiculed Trump when he said there was spying on his campaign. Others, like House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, declared they had evidence of collusion but never produced it. Countless reporters, columnists, and analysts still continue to deride … the spinning of ‘absurd conspiracy theories.’”

Today, though, we know that those conspiracy theories are no longer absurd. In fact, they’re no longer just theories. As Senator Graham points out, “There were four counterintelligence investigations opened against Trump campaign associates. Not one time was President Trump defensively briefed about the FBI’s concerns. Even more egregious, when the FBI gave a generic briefing to the Trump campaign about foreign influence, not only did they fail to mention the specific concerns about Trump associates, they sent an FBI agent into the briefing to monitor President Trump and General Flynn.”

So much for the hard-earned reputation of the FBI. So much for equal justice under the law. And so much for the laughable myth of the “scandal free” Obama-Biden years.

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