Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#451

Post by vic » Fri Feb 09, 2018 8:21 pm

Addie wrote:
Fri Feb 09, 2018 7:55 pm
Bloomberg
Trump Blocks Release of Democratic Memo on Russian Probe

President Trump has decided to block the release of a Democratic memo countering Republican claims of FBI and Justice Department bias in the Russia probe, according to a White House lawyer letter to House Intelligence Committee Chair Devin Nunes, Bloomberg News reports.

Developing...
The article at Talking Points Memo has images of the letter. The article starts with
We know about Friday night news dumps. This is looking more like an avalanche.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#452

Post by gupwalla » Fri Feb 09, 2018 8:44 pm

OK, so the summary from OWHC is:

- The President would like to declassify this memo
- The DNI, Dept. AG, and Director FBI object to certain passages to be released, on national security concerns
- The President denies declassification at this time
- The President makes available the DNI, Dept. AG, and Director FBI to the Committee to review and perhaps rephrase certain aspects of the memo in order to avoid these concerns.

My immediate response:

- Bullshit. Neither OWHC nor the President made those concerns especially noteworthy while approving the Nunes memo (which was not without objection by the relevant departments)
- At least Trump got briefed on the contents of the memo. Whether they registered or not in his brain is anyone's guess, but I doubt it was a pleasant experience for him. Maybe he even remembered the relevant parts to pass along to his private attorneys - who knows?
- Bullshit. Trump never intended to release the Democratic response. He wanted the ass-covering, ass-kissing memo to be public, not the one that makes him look like a fool or a complicit fool or a tool of a complicit fool.
- At least he has established, for the record, that he is more about covering his own ass than "transparency." Both he and Nunes are sunk by this. It's only a matter of time (and institutional guts).


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#453

Post by RTH10260 » Fri Feb 09, 2018 10:00 pm




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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#454

Post by Orlylicious » Sat Feb 10, 2018 12:39 am

Rep. Eric Swalwell‏ Verified account @RepSwalwell
The only consistency @realDonaldTrump has shown in #TrumpRussia investigation is to obstruct at every turn. We need to know if he placed political pressure on DOJ.

Rep. Eric Swalwell added,

Kyle Griffin Verified account @kylegriffin1
W.H. Counsel Don McGahn writes to Devin Nunes that Trump is unable to declassify the Democratic memo “at this time” (Letter via pool).
10:09 PM - 9 Feb 2018




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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#455

Post by June bug » Sat Feb 10, 2018 8:09 am

gupwalla wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 7:23 pm
Volkonski wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 6:56 pm
June bug wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 6:47 pm
Wouldn't surprise me if Trump already told (or signaled to) Nunes that he won't declassify the Democratic memo. As I understand it, the only way the memo gets out then is if the whole House votes to release it. I wouldn't count on Republican support for that.
Yes, but all the Republicans on the committee voted to release it. If Trump doesn't release it the blowback will be on him and him alone. Why won't he release it when all those Republicans were willing to release it? What is he afraid of? What is he hiding? What has he done that the people must not see?
Additionally, Speaker Ryan has expressed support for releasing the Dem memo. If this does end up back at the House, I think they would pass it.
Absolutely no way will the House vote to release it. The only way it will ever be declassified by this President is with enough redactions to eviscerate it .

Meanwhile, Nunes' war continues on the State Department front with yet another memo about the Shearer dossier.

"Death by a thousand cuts..."



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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#456

Post by pipistrelle » Sat Feb 10, 2018 8:12 am

June bug wrote:
Sat Feb 10, 2018 8:09 am
gupwalla wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 7:23 pm
Volkonski wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 6:56 pm

Yes, but all the Republicans on the committee voted to release it. If Trump doesn't release it the blowback will be on him and him alone. Why won't he release it when all those Republicans were willing to release it? What is he afraid of? What is he hiding? What has he done that the people must not see?
Additionally, Speaker Ryan has expressed support for releasing the Dem memo. If this does end up back at the House, I think they would pass it.
Absolutely no way will the House vote to release it. The only way it will ever be declassified by this President is with enough redactions to eviscerate it .

Meanwhile, Nunes' war continues on the State Department front with yet another memo about the Shearer dossier.

"Death by a thousand cuts..."
At some point, most won't take Nunes seriously (if they ever did). To me, all this just points out how much someone is trying to hide. If 45 and/or all in his administration felt they were free of any dicey conduct or behavior, they'd be open to investigation.



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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#457

Post by RVInit » Sat Feb 10, 2018 8:15 am

June bug wrote:
Sat Feb 10, 2018 8:09 am
gupwalla wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 7:23 pm
Volkonski wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 6:56 pm

Yes, but all the Republicans on the committee voted to release it. If Trump doesn't release it the blowback will be on him and him alone. Why won't he release it when all those Republicans were willing to release it? What is he afraid of? What is he hiding? What has he done that the people must not see?
Additionally, Speaker Ryan has expressed support for releasing the Dem memo. If this does end up back at the House, I think they would pass it.
Absolutely no way will the House vote to release it. The only way it will ever be declassified by this President is with enough redactions to eviscerate it .

Meanwhile, Nunes' war continues on the State Department front with yet another memo about the Shearer dossier.

"Death by a thousand cuts..."
:yeah:


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#458

Post by Addie » Sat Feb 10, 2018 10:03 am

The Hill
Schiff: Dems will review suggested memo redactions from DOJ, FBI

Rep. Adam Schiff (Calif.), the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said Friday that Democrats on the panel will review recommended redactions to a minority-authored memo after President Trump moved to block its release.

The Democratic memo is intended to rebut a GOP document released last week alleging that the FBI and Department of Justice (DOJ) misused their authority to obtain a surveillance order on a former Trump campaign adviser.

In a letter sent Friday to Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), White House counsel Don McGahn said that the president had declined to release the Democratic memo because it posed "significant concerns" for U.S. national security.

Schiff blasted that decision, accusing Trump of harboring a double standard in blocking the Democratic memo after he approved the release of the GOP-drafted memo despite objections from the FBI and DOJ.

Schiff said Committee Democrats had submitted the memo to the DOJ and FBI for vetting before the panel voted to release the document, and that minority members of the committee would review redactions recommended by the agencies.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#459

Post by Addie » Sat Feb 10, 2018 3:29 pm

Slate
Trump Says Democrats Are to Blame for His Decision Not to Release Very Political Memo

President Donald Trump, not surprisingly, thinks it’s someone else’s fault he refused to release the classified memo that amounted to a Democratic response to the Republican classified memo that the commander in chief approved for release last week. Trump said House Democrats were to blame for his refusal to release their “very political” response, theorizing that their plan was to have the president release a “heavily redacted” document so that they could then accuse him of lacking transparency. Trump said he “told them to re-do and send back in proper form!”

The president’s explanation came hours after he blocked the release of the memo by including a letter from FBI Director Christopher Wray and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein that identified information “for which national security or law enforcement concerns are especially significant.”

Democrats were not buying the explanation with Rep. Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee highlighting the hypocrisy of having approved the Republican memo but then rejecting the response. “After ignoring urging of FBI & DOJ not to release misleading Nunes memo because it omits material facts, @POTUS now expresses concerns over sharing precisely those facts with public,” Schiff wrote on Twitter.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#460

Post by Addie » Sat Feb 10, 2018 5:42 pm

Just Security
It’s up to the House Intel Committee, not Trump, whether to release the Democratic memo on the Page FISA application

Most news outlets, such as the New York Times, are reporting that President Donald Trump has “blocked” the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) from publicly disclosing the Democratic memorandum rebutting Devin Nunes’s claims that FBI and other officials acted improperly in seeking FISA warrants concerning Carter Page.

That’s not right: The President doesn’t have the power to block the HPSCI from releasing its memo. Committee members, including Adam Schiff, will undoubtedly consult with DOJ and the FBI to make reasonable efforts to amend the memo so as not to burn any important sources or methods–something that Schiff himself recommended. Even so, it’s ultimately up to the Committee to decide whether to release the memo, and whether to redact certain classified information before doing so.

Tonight’s letter to HPSCI from White House Counsel Donald McGahn states that the memo in question includes certain information that the President declines to declassify, due to the determination of the Department of Justice that disclosure of that information would raise “especially significant concerns for the national security and law enforcement interests.” That’s the President’s prerogative. As I explained here back in 2014, however, the classification system merely regulates what Executive branch personnel can do with information entrusted to them. It does not regulate what members, or committees, of Congress may lawfully do with such information.

McGahn writes that if the legislative branch “unilaterally” releases classified information, it would raise “serious separation of powers concerns,” citing Department of Navy v. Egan, 484 U.S. at 527. Egan, however, simply recognizes that the President has a constitutional authority “to classify and [ii] control access to information bearing on national security and [iii] to determine whether an individual is sufficiently trustworthy to occupy a position in the Executive Branch that will give that person access to such information.” Neither Egan or any other case suggests, let alone holds, that the President has constitutional authority to restrict Congress’s disclosure of such information. Cf. also id. at 530 (“unless Congress specifically has provided otherwise, courts traditionally have been reluctant to intrude upon the authority of the Executive in military and national security affairs”). And therefore no Executive orders or other presidential actions even purport to impose such restrictions on the Congress.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#461

Post by Addie » Sun Feb 11, 2018 9:11 pm

The Hill
GOP lawmaker hits Trump over Dem memo: Americans deserve to read both

Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) slammed President Trump’s decision on Friday not to declassify the Democratic response to the GOP surveillance memo.

Trump said he would not declassify the memo, blocking it from publication after the House Intelligence Committee voted earlier this week to make the document public.

“Both the Republican and Democratic [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act] memos should be released,” tweeted Amash, a libertarian-leaning lawmaker who has been critical of Trump.

“I’ve read both memos. Neither one endangers national security. The American people deserve the opportunity to read both memos," he added.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#462

Post by Addie » Mon Feb 12, 2018 9:51 am

WaPo
Nunes ‘abused’ his power on intelligence committee, former CIA director says

The former director of the Central Intelligence Agency on Sunday blasted a Republican memo alleging abuses of power by the FBI and the Justice Department.

John Brennan accused Rep. Devin Nunes (R.-Calif.), the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, of selectively releasing information to accuse law enforcement officials of improperly obtaining a warrant to monitor the communications of a former Trump campaign adviser.

“It’s just appalling and clearly underscores how partisan Mr. Nunes has been,” Brennan said in an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

“He has abused the chairmanship of [the Intelligence Committee],” Brennan said.

Brennan headed the CIA during a sprawling investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and the Trump campaign’s connections to Russia. He said that from his perspective, the FBI was “very forthcoming” with information presented to a court that authorized surveillance on the campaign aide, Carter Page. That surveillance was first authorized in October 2016, a month after Page left the campaign.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#463

Post by Addie » Tue Feb 13, 2018 1:02 pm

Mediate
FBI Director Chris Wray: We Still Have 'Grave Concerns' About Nunes FISA Memo

During his testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee, FBI director Christopher Wray confirmed the reports about his apprehension over Devin Nunes‘ FISA memo.

For the last few weeks, it was believed that Wray opposed President Trump‘s decision to release the memo, saying that it would give a partisan-charged “false narrative” about malpractice within his bureau. The memo came up during today’s hearing on global threats to the United States, and Wray expressed his “grave concerns about the accuracy of the memorandum.”

Wray cited “omissions” as his top concern, explaining that he wasn’t sure how thousands of sensitive documents and bits of intelligence could be sufficiently condensed into Nunes’ brief memo.

For the last several days, Congressional Democrats have called on the Trump Administration to let them release their counter-memo, claiming it will add context to Nunes’ findings and address the alleged misuse of FISA surveillance. Trump slammed the Democrats over their memo last week and wouldn’t allow them to release it.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#464

Post by Addie » Tue Feb 13, 2018 8:26 pm

The Hill
Schiff: We're not going to revise Democratic memo

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said Tuesday night that members of his party won’t revise their countermemo, despite requests from the White House to do so.

“We’re not going to make any revisions to it. The only question is what redactions will be made. And obviously we’d like to keep those to a minimum,” Schiff told reporters.

“The White House has a different interest. I think their interest is in redacting anything that doesn’t reflect well on the White House,” Schiff added.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#465

Post by Dolly » Wed Feb 14, 2018 1:38 pm

02/14/18 12:43 PM EST
Schiff blasts FBI for heavy-handed redactions on Democratic countermemo
.....................
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) suggested the FBI is using too much red ink to try to block any new information in the memo from being made public.

"The FBI has identified in the memo, in our response, essentially everything that isn't already a matter of public record that wasn't already declassified," Schiff told reporters during a breakfast sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor.

He argued that since the Republican memo was released to the public, as drafted by the staff of committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), as a four-page document with completely new information, the Democrats' countermemo should also be able to include new information.

"The GOP memo was all classified before it was declassified. There is a great deal in the Democratic response that has already been declassified. I think the question ought to be, ‘Is there anything that can’t be declassified in the public interest because of sources and methods for investigating ventures?'" he continued.

Schiff said he is making headway with the FBI as they continue to go through what information can be made public. The memo involves the process by which Justice Department officials applied for a surveillance warrant of a former Trump campaign aide in 2016. Republicans claim that officials relied on biased or politically motivated information as part of their argument in favor of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant application. <SNIP>
http://thehill.com/policy/national-secu ... ion-in-dem


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#466

Post by Addie » Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:04 pm

Politico
Trump declassification of GOP memo could lead to cascade of disclosures

The legal waves created by President Donald Trump’s decision to declassify a Republican memo suggesting FBI wrongdoing continued to crash ashore on Thursday, with a federal judge saying the president’s move had undermined government arguments that it should be able to keep mum about its ongoing investigations.

During a hearing on a bid by BuzzFeed to get more information about how a so-called dossier compiled by a former British spy was handled, U.S. District Court Judge Amit Mehta grew frustrated with a Justice Department lawyer who argued that Trump’s declassification order did not alter the contours of the legal dispute.

Mehta said the government would normally be entitled to deference in asserting the need to keep its investigative work under wraps, but perhaps no longer with respect to the dossier.

“This isn’t the ordinary case,” Mehta told a Justice Department lawyer, Anjali Motgi. “I don’t know of any time the president has declassified the fact of a counterintelligence investigation. That’s going to be a hard sell given what the president has done. … This is a new frontier and it has an impact.”


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#467

Post by Addie » Fri Feb 16, 2018 9:49 am

Business Insider
New documents show Senate Republicans had Susan Rice's email for 8 months before they raised questions about it ...

Grassley and Graham asked Rice a number of questions related to her knowledge of the FBI's Russia investigation; her knowledge of the October 2016 FISA application to surveil Page; whether anyone else at the January 5 meeting memorialized the conversation; what the attendants discussed regarding ex-British spy Christopher Steele and the Steele dossier; and the extent of Obama's involvement with top officials to discuss the Russia probe.

Rice's lawyer, Kathryn Ruemmler, issued a rebuttal to the Grassley-Graham letter earlier this week.

"There is nothing 'unusual' about the National Security Advisor memorializing an important discussion for the record," Ruemmler said in a statement. "The Obama White House was justifiably concerned about how comprehensive they should be in their briefings regarding Russia to members of the Trump transition team, particularly Lt. General Michael Flynn, given the concerning communications between him and Russian officials."

Ruemmler also disputed the letter's claim that the meeting included discussion of the Steele dossier, an explosive collection of memos alleging Trump-Russia collusion. The FBI is said to be using the dossier as a "roadmap" in its Russia investigation.

"The discussion that Ambassador Rice documented did not involve the so-called Steele dossier," Ruemmler said. "Any insinuation that Ambassador Rice's actions in this matter were inappropriate is yet another attempt to distract and deflect from the importance of the ongoing investigations into Russian meddling in America's democracy."

[Timeline follows]


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#468

Post by Dolly » Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:02 am

A thread at Free Republic
FISA Court Presiding Judge Rosemary Collyer Responds to Chairman Nunes and Chairman Goodlatte
The Conservative Treehouse ^ | February 15, 2018 | sundance
Posted on 2/15/2018, 10:00:03 PM by Texas Fossil

Moments ago FISA Court Presiding Judge Rosemary Collyer responded to the requests from the House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes and House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte. (full pdf’s below – #1 and #2)

There are nuances in each response specific to the statutory roles of each Chairman and the specific requests made by each committee. Reflected in Judge Collyer’s responses is a need for careful consideration of each unique request.

♦House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes holds primary oversight authority over the aggregate Intelligence Community (IC). Chairman Nunes has requested the transcripts from the FISA Court during the DOJ/FBI Title-1 surveillance application over their target, U.S. person Carter Page.

♦House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte holds primary oversight authority over the Department of Justice -including the FISA court- and has requested the actual FISA Title-1 application as submitted by the DOJ/FBI for surveillance of Carter Page.

Judge Collyer responds to both legislative branch chairman from the position of “never previously receiving such requests.” There are separation of power challenges, but also an understanding inherent in the response to Chairman Goodlatte of the unique statutory oversight his committee holds.
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/3632489/posts

Their link:
FISA Court Presiding Judge Rosemary Collyer Responds to Chairman Nunes and Chairman Goodlatte Request for FISC Documents…
https://theconservativetreehouse.com/20 ... documents/

FISA Court Presiding Judge Rosemary M Collyer Response to Chairman Nunes



FISA Court Presiding Judge Rosemary M Collyer Response to Chairman Goodlatte


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#469

Post by Addie » Fri Feb 16, 2018 1:43 pm

Reuters
Agreement near on Democrats' Russia memo: Schiff

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee are “very close” to reaching agreement with the FBI and Department of Justice on redactions to a memo that seeks to rebut assertions of bias in the probe of U.S. President Donald Trump’s ties to Russia, the panel’s top Democrat said on Friday.

“I think we’re very close to reaching agreement on it,” Representative Adam Schiff said during an appearance at the Council on Foreign Relations think tank. “I think we resolve that very soon, so we can release this.”

Trump on Feb. 9 blocked release of the classified memorandum. On Twitter the next day, he said the document was “very political and long” and must be “heavily redacted” to protect sensitive information.

Trump earlier cleared the release of a memo drafted by Intelligence Committee Republicans that alleged partisan bias in the securing of an electronic surveillance warrant on Trump campaign aide Carter Page. The president did so despite opposition from the Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#470

Post by Volkonski » Mon Feb 19, 2018 5:10 pm

Tiredretiredlawyer wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:17 pm
https://newsstand.google.com/articles/C ... GAwADCLswk
Devin Nunes wants to build a physical wall to block Democrats

Democratic members of the House Intelligence Committee are sounding the alarm on reports that beleaguered Republican Chairman Devin Nunes plans to put up a physical partition separating GOP committee staffers from their Democratic colleagues on Capitol Hill.

CBS News reported on Tuesday that the California Republican, a member of Trump’s transition team, may build a wall before the president (and may make the Democrats pay for it). The wall is expected to be built in the committee’s secure spaces this spring.

For their part, other Republicans on the committee have denied any knowledge of the plan.

“I’m not part of that decision,” Rep. Mike Conaway, R-TX, told CBS. “You’ve got to talk to Devin.”

“I swear to God I didn’t know that,” Rep. Tom Rooney, R-FL, said. “The level of trust and the level of everything down there is — it’s poison. It’s absolute poison down there,” Rooney added, referring to an ongoing ethics investigation into the “entire Republican staff.” . Anyone know about this ongoing staff investigation?


Tom Rooney not running for re-election.
The Hill

@thehill

#BREAKING: Florida GOP lawmaker won't seek reelection in 2018
http://
hill.cm/79uUbRx

3:01 PM - Feb 19, 2018


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#471

Post by Dolly » Mon Feb 19, 2018 5:27 pm

FEB. 8, 2018 <same date as original post>
Rooney: Entire Republican Staff of House Intelligence Committee Is Under Investigation

Rep. Tom Rooney says the atmosphere on the House Intelligence Committee is “absolute poison”:

Rooney said one reason for the tension is an erosion of trust, exacerbated by an ongoing ethics investigation into the “entire Republican staff,” including “the woman up front that answers the phone” for alleged leaks. He later added that the matter was being handled by the Office of Congressional Ethics.

Leaks, you say? From Republican staffers? I am shocked.
that is all at this link. I didn't find anything else.
https://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/ ... stigation/


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#472

Post by Slim Cognito » Mon Feb 19, 2018 6:26 pm

When I saw "FL GOP congressman to retire" I almost did cartwheels. Wrong Rooney. This is Tom. Ours is Francis.



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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#473

Post by pipistrelle » Mon Feb 19, 2018 6:44 pm

Slim Cognito wrote:
Mon Feb 19, 2018 6:26 pm
When I saw "FL GOP congressman to retire" I almost did cartwheels. Wrong Rooney. This is Tom. Ours is Francis.
I read it at first as “FLOP” to retire, which is too open-ended.



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