IN TODAY’S EDITION
- Trey Gowdy and Marco Rubio explain why the FBI isn’t all wrong.
- Trump isn’t ready to throw Sessions out, no matter his tweets.
- The Washington Post attacks Diane Black — and all conservative women.
- Moral relativism has trashed our society. Here’s what to do about it.
- The Supremes got a big Fourth Amendment case right … mostly.
- A crack in the justice system — the outrageous story of Matthew Charles.
- Daily Features: Top Headlines, Memes, Cartoons, Columnists and Short Cuts.
“Only aim to do your duty, and mankind will give you credit where you fail.” —Thomas Jefferson (1775)
My most recent column, “The Trump Investigation: Origins and Motives,” was devoted to a series of forensic analysis essays about the Trump/Putin collusion charade and how Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton conspired, with the help of a few key FBI and CIA friends in high places, to set up Donald Trump for a takedown.
That forensic analysis was written by National Review’s Andrew McCarthy, whose perspective on this matter I trust given his considerable record as a former assistant U.S. attorney.
There is another astute former assistant U.S. attorney whose perspective I also trust implicitly. That would be Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC), who chairs the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and was the former chair of the House Benghazi Committee. In his former capacity, he exposed Hillary Clinton’s corrupt coverup of the Benghazi attack, which she fabricated to protect Barack Obama’s successful 2012 reelection bid. Obama suppressed any further investigation into that disgraceful coverup in order to, in turn, protect Clinton’s 2016 presidential bid.
Currently, as chair of the House Oversight Committee, Gowdy has doggedly pursued corruption at the highest levels of the Department of Justice. That includes how a handful of Obama/Clinton supporters in the FBI and CIA — most notably former CIA Director John Brennan (the Deep State boss who’s at the root of the Trump collusion setup), and former FBI Director James Comey, who, with a few other key FBI personnel — manufactured the Trump/Putin investigation in order to undermine Trump’s candidacy and then his unexpected election.
On Wednesday, after reviewing some of the FBI’s records regarding “Crossfire Hurricane,” the counterintelligence investigation into whether some Russian operatives were attempting to gain influence with several individuals with loose ties to the Trump campaign, Gowdy offered his assessment of that operation.
Regarding the justification, Gowdy concluded: “I don’t know what the FBI could have done or should have done other than run out a lead that someone loosely connected with the campaign was making assertions about Russia. I think you would want the FBI to find whether or not there was any validity to what those people were saying. … Think back to what the president himself told James Comey. He said, ‘I didn’t collude with Russia, but if anyone connected with my campaign did, I want you to investigate it.’ It strikes me that that’s exactly what the FBI was doing. I am even more convinced that the FBI did exactly what my fellow citizens would want them to do when they got the information they got, and that it has nothing to do with Donald Trump.”
Gowdy added, “Marco Rubio and others [like] Tom Cotton on the SSI [Senate Select Committee on Intelligence], the folks who have seen the information, I think, have the same perspective I have.”
Indeed, according to Rubio, “What I have seen is evidence that [the FBI agents] were investigating individuals with a history of links to Russia. … Individuals … who we should be suspicious of that predate the presidential campaign. And when individuals like that are in the orbit of a major political campaign in America, the FBI, who is in charge of counterintelligence investigations, should look at people like that.”
As I have noted repeatedly regarding Op “Crossfire Hurricane,” “For certain, Russian efforts to undermine the integrity of U.S. elections should be thoroughly investigated — as has been the case in the past.”
But I also previously noted, “The FBI should have contacted the Trump campaign directly to help determine if the Russians were seeking to influence that campaign, but there was already a fabricated presumption of colluding guilt” by several of Comey’s key senior FBI personnel, and any findings from “Crossfire Hurricane” that these connections did exist would fit nicely into their narrative.
Predictably, some Democrats and their dependable Leftmedia PR outlets are intentionally conflating the comments from Gowdy and Rubio as an exoneration of the overall corruption investigation regarding how Comey and a few of his key investigative managers within the FBI collaborated with Clinton campaign officials to frame Trump on the Russia collusion delusion.
But what Gowdy and Rubio said in no way exonerates that larger investigation into a few corrupt managers within the FBI.
According to Gowdy: “I think there are two things important to understand. Number one, the source of President Trump’s frustration. [Former CIA Director John] Brennan said he should be in the dust bin of history. [Former FBI Director James] Comey said impeachment’s too good of a remedy. [Former Director of National Intelligence James] Clapper doesn’t like him. [Former Attorney General] Loretta lynch said, ‘Call it a matter, not an investigation.’ [Ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee Adam] Schiff said he had evidence of collusion before we even began the investigation, and 60 Democrats have voted to impeach him before Bob Mueller has come up with a single, solitary finding.”
The question is not about whether FBI counterintelligence agents did what they were reasonably tasked to do but about the motivations of Comey and his crew regarding this investigation.
To that end, Gowdy posits the salient questions to be answered about “Crossfire Hurricane”: “What did the FBI do? When did they do it? What was the factual predicate upon which they took whatever actions they took and against whom were they directed?”
Footnote: Regarding President Trump’s blustering social media posts about corruption at the highest levels of the FBI, he should make sure those posts don’t cast the entire FBI as corrupt. As I have noted repeatedly, “The corruption of FBI leadership and some high-level bureaucrats has cast a long shadow on all of the 12,484 special agents and 2,950 intelligence analysts in the FBI. But most men and women in the FBI, much as in the CIA, steadfastly abide by their oaths ‘to support and defend’ our Constitution, not their preferential candidate, and they serve our nation likewise. They live up to the FBI motto: Fidelity, Bravery, Integrity.”
In a CBS interview, Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) was asked to comment on a New York Times report alleging that President Donald Trump had “berated” Attorney General Jeff Sessions for having recused himself from the Russia probe into election interference. Trump reportedly requested that Sessions reverse his recusal, which, if true, Sessions obviously declined.
Gowdy responded, “I think what the president is doing is expressing frustration that Attorney General Sessions should have shared these reasons for recusal before he took the job, not afterward. If I were the president and I picked someone to be the country’s chief law enforcement officer, and they told me later, ‘Oh, by the way, I’m not going to be able to participate in the most important case in the office,’ I would be frustrated, too. And that’s how I read that, is, ‘Senator Sessions, why didn’t you tell me before I picked you?’ There are lots of really good lawyers in the country — [President Trump] could have picked someone else.”
Soon after the interview, Trump responded by quoting Gowdy’s assertion about picking"somebody else" and adding, “And I wish I did!” The mainstream media was quick to jump all over Trump’s latest “attack” on his AG, suggesting that Trump was seeking to convince Sessions to resign or is angling to fire him because there’s bad blood between them. And while there may be much popular speculation as to Trump’s opinion on the job Sessions is doing as AG, the fact remains that the only real issue Trump has with Sessions is the recusal. But Trump has referenced it repeatedly.
Back in July 2017, Trump explained to The New York Times why he was disappointed in Sessions: “Jeff Sessions takes the job, gets into the job, recuses himself, which, frankly, I think is very unfair to the president. How do you take a job and then recuse yourself? If he would have recused himself before the job, I would have said, ‘Thanks, Jeff, but I’m not going to take you.’ It’s extremely unfair — and that’s a mild word — to the president.” But it also should be noted that back in 2017 Sessions offered his resignation to Trump, which Trump refused. Nowhere has Trump stated that he regretted not accepting Sessions resignation.
In other words, Trump’s criticism of Sessions has been consistent and only a result of Sessions caving to Washington pressure to recuse himself. And this issue is repeatedly brought to bear because Robert Mueller’s probe continues as a thorn in Trump’s side. Therefore Trump’s frustration with Sessions over the recusal continues. This isn’t rocket science.
“Democracy Dies in Darkness” became The Washington Post’s motto after the once-reputable paper was downgraded to political tabloid status by its billionaire owner, Jeff Bezos, a charter member of the Trump Resistance League. Clearly, the standard of journalism that once graced WaPo’s pages has also died.
This week, the Post featured a mocking hit piece on Rep. Diane Black, a friend of The Patriot Post and leading Republican candidate for governor in our native Tennessee. Strong conservative women are among WaPo’s favorite targets and Diane is certainly in that category, having chaired the House Budget Committee, where she led the charge to pass Donald Trump’s signature tax reform bill. That legislation has charged up the economic growth trend since Trump’s election, as have many of his other achievements.
Speaking to a group of pastors about the “root causes” of violence in our culture, particularly among youth, Black proposed several issues that she believes are undermining social order. “Deterioration of the family” and violence in movies were two of her examples, both of which we’ve highlighted. But the Post targeted its scorn on her assertion that pornography is also to blame.
“Pornography [is] available on the shelf when you walk in the grocery store,” Black noted. And then there’s the Internet, available on ubiquitous handheld devices. She lamented, “All of this is available without parental guidance, and I think that is a big part of the root cause.”
Of course, the takeaway from her comments would be that pornography degrades human worth and value, which everyone in the room understood. It’s evident that such degradation is a plague on our society. Of course, the Post argues that “the science isn’t settled” on the impact of pornography — except among those with a shred of common sense.
According to WaPo, smart people know guns are the problem: “Studies analyzing mass shootings in the United States and contrasting this country with others demonstrate that the single most important variable is the high number of guns in the United States…” But as I have articulated, violence in America is a culture problem, not a “gun problem.” Clearly, that doesn’t fit with WaPo’s statist efforts to repeal the Second Amendment.
But what’s really at the core of the Post’s attack on Black? The future of the Democrat Party depends on its continued ability to dupe female voters, its most dependable constituency. Strong conservative women like Diane Black pose a serious threat to that Demo-dependency.
- U.S., North Korea enter second day of nuclear talks (Reuters)
- Trump administration imposes tariffs on European steel, aluminum (USA Today)
- Italy, EU instability roils U.S. markets — A sign of crisis to come? (Investor’s Business Daily)
- Trump signs “Right to Try,” says it will save “tremendous number of lives” (Fox News)
- Trump will pardon conservative pundit Dinesh D'Souza, who was convicted for campaign finance violation (CNBC)
- Far from cages: Feds pay $670 a day to make unaccompanied alien children “comfortable” (The Washington Times)
- New Yorkers and Californians can’t stop moving to Texas (Washington Examiner)
- Texas governor introduces school gun-safety plan (National Review)
- American Medical Association president cheers group’s jump into gun-control advocacy (The Washington Free Beacon)
- Humor: NAACP to close its doors after Starbucks ends all racism forever (The Babylon Bee)
- Policy: The UN redefines what it means to be a “human” (The Daily Signal)
- Policy: How Title IX became an ideological battering ram (Independent Women’s Forum)
For more of today’s news, visit Patriot Headline Report.
For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.
For more of today’s top cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.
Don’t Miss Alexander’s Column
Read The Trump Investigation: Origins and Motives. The genesis of the Trump/Putin collusion investigation from the perspective of a seasoned federal prosecutor.
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MORE ANALYSIS FROM THE PATRIOT POST
- Moral Relativism Led to a Violent Society — How to Turn the Tide — Ideas have consequences, and the morally bankrupt theory of moral relativism has done damage.
- Fourth Amendment: Supremes Get One Right … Or Do They? — What exactly is admissible criminal evidence and when is a warrant needed?
- A Crack in the Justice System: The Story of Matthew Charles — After rehabilitating himself thoroughly, Charles is headed back to prison for a decades-old offense.
- Trump’s China Tariff Threat Is Back on the Table — He’s ratcheting up the pressure again on China after North Korea’s flip-flop.
- Humor Video: ‘The Longest Time’ (TSA Version) — Reason’s Remy prepares summer travelers for airport groping season.
BEST OF RIGHT OPINION
For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.
OPINION IN BRIEF
Victor Davis Hanson: “Why have the former guardians of civil liberties flipped in the near half-century since Watergate? One, both the media and the liberal establishment believed that the outsider Trump represented an existential danger to themselves and the nation at large — similar to the way operatives in the Nixon administration had felt about far-left presidential challenger George McGovern in 1972. But this time around, liberals were not out of power as they were in 1972. Instead, they were the establishment. They held the reins of federal power under the Obama administration. And they chose to exercise it in a fashion similar to how Nixon’s team had in 1972. Second, pollsters and the media were convinced that Hillary Clinton would be elected. As a result, members of the FBI, CIA and other federal bureaucracies apparently assumed that any extralegal efforts to stop the common menace Trump would be appreciated rather than punished by a soon-to-be President Clinton. Three, those in the Obama administration, the Clinton campaign and the media formed an echo chamber. All convinced themselves that any means necessary to achieve the noble ends of precluding a Trump presidency were justified. The danger of such groupthink continues; even now they are unaware of the impending bomb that is about to go off. Public opinion has radically changed. A majority of Americans believe the Muller investigation is politically motivated, according to a CBS News poll. The inspector general’s report on the FBI’s handling of the Clinton email scandal is soon due. It will likely detail violations of ethics and laws among Obama administration officials and may include criminal referrals. Already, a few liberals and former Clinton supporters are warning the Left that it is on the wrong side of history and about to reverse the entire post-Watergate liberal tradition. There is a reckoning on the horizon. It has nothing to do with Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton. Instead, the traditional, self-appointed watchdogs of government overreach have turned into the carnivores of civil liberties.”
Upright: “Those who want to ban guns should make their case honestly, by seeking to repeal the Second Amendment, rather than leveraging their control of a few key banks. The free market works when consumers, not bankers or credit-card companies, decide what they purchase. Republicans should make it clear to the financial industry that they will protect that right.” —Jonathan Tobin
America First: “For an administration to engage in a war against fossil fuels is just simply wrongheaded to begin with. But this president from the very beginning said that the war on coal is over. We’re going to be energy dominant and energy independent. When you see that taking place, that’s the reason there’s tremendous optimism across the country, tremendous optimism for our economy and the future and the ability to be about stewardship, and jobs and growth.” —EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt
Everything about the Obamas is political: “This is not The Obama Network. There’s no political slant to the programming.” —Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos on the Obamas’ huge new platform
Race bait, part I: “He’s made it more popular, I think, to be openly racist. … Tens of millions of people voted for him after he showed his cards for years.” —CNN commentator Michaela Angela Davis saying “absolutely yes” Trump voters are all racist
Race bait, part II: “You can see the way people act, and maybe they feel a license to act that way because this president — I will quote Steve Schmidt — ‘is a stone-cold racist.’ I’m sorry; I quoted someone else, but I agree with it, and I’ll stand right by it.” —"Morning Joe" host Mika Brzezinski
And last… “White racism does exist, but its social power is weak and the social power arrayed against it is overwhelming.” —National Review’s John O'Sullivan
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Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis
Nate Jackson, Managing Editor Mark Alexander, Publisher