L'affair Comey -- Trump didn't obstruct and the Russians didn't hack the election
The Democrats dream of pinning "obstruction" on President Trump were just flushed down the toilet.
The lying #FakeNews media and desperate Democrats have been reporting on this for weeks as if it were a "done deal," peddling fake "Comey memos" that no one has ever laid eyes on, submitted by our liberal media's favorite source -- "anonymous."
It's all a huge phony scam designed to take down President Trump.
But the joke is on the Dems and our #FakeNews media because Comey in his own words just destroyed any hope of an "obstruction case."
Jay Sekulow, the Chief Counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice appeared on Hannity and said former disgraced FBI Director James Comey's statement released was a "total and complete vindication of the president."
He went on to correctly state that pursuing the matter was a "waste of money."
Former FBI director James Comey began his testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday by suggesting that the question of whether President Donald Trump had committed obstruction of justice was one for Special Counsel Robert Mueller to investigate.
But under questioning by Sen. James Risch (R-ID), Comey all but destroyed any hope Democrats had for bringing a case of obstruction of justice against President Donald Trump.
According to Comey's notes, Trump told him, "I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go." Comey attempted to push this prompt as an "order" or "command" from POTUS; although he goes on to say he did not follow it.
Sen. Risch immediately saw this display on Comey's part for what it was, and proceeded to grill Comey on the matter: "Do you know of any case where a person has been charged for obstruction of justice, or for that matter any other criminal offense where they said or thought they hoped for an outcome?" Risch asked.
Comey immediately back-tracked: "I don't know well enough to answer, and the reason I keep saying his words is, I took it as a direction. I mean this is the president of the United States with me alone saying ‘I hope this,' I took it as this is what he wants me to do."
Catching Comey in the act, Sen. Risch clarified: "You may have taken it as a direction but that's not what he said."
Risch: I want to drill right down, as my time is limited, to the most recent dust-up regarding, allegations that the President of the United States obstructed justice. And, boy, you nailed this down on page page five, paragraph three, you put this in quotes. Words matter, you wrote down the words so we can all have the words in front of us now. There's 28 words that are in quotes, and it says, quote: "I hope" -- this is the president speaking -- "I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go." Now, those are his exact words; is that correct?
Risch: And you wrote them here and you put them in quotes.
Risch: Thank you for that. He did not direct you to let it go.
Comey: Not in his words, no.
Risch: He did not order you to let it go.
Comey: Again, those words are not in order.
Risch: No. He said, "I hope." Now, like me, you probably did hundreds of cases, maybe thousands of cases, charging people with criminal offenses. And of course you have knowledge of the thousands of cases out there where people have been charged. Do you know of any case where a person has been charged for obstruction of justice or for that matter any other criminal offense where they said or thought they hoped for an outcome?
Comey: I don't know well enough to answer. And the reason I keep saying his words is, I took it as a direction.
Comey: I mean, it's the President of the United States with me alone, saying, "I hope this." I took it as this is what he wants me to do. I didn't obey that, but that's the way I took it.
Risch: You may have taken it as a direction, but that's not what he said.
Risch: He said, "I hope."
Comey: Those are exact words, correct.
Risch: You don't know of anyone that's been charged for hoping something?
Comey: I don't, as I sit here.
Risch: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Democrats have hinged their hopes for impeachment -- and reversing the 2016 elections -- on the idea that Trump committed obstruction of justice. That case has now been smashed beyond repair.
The obstruction of justice meme
Keith Koffler (WhiteHouseDossier) reports that Sen. Lindsey Graham, (R-SC), no fan of President Trump, says special counsel Robert Mueller must have concluded there is no obstruction of justice case against Trump, because if he thought there was, he wouldn't let his "star witness" James Comey testify before Congress.
I don't know if this is correct, but I do know that Graham is not the kind of Republican who would reflexively defend Trump. He's not a partisan and Trump has gone after him and his close Senate friend, John McCain, in a personal manner. Rather, Graham would be one of the first to go if Republicans ever decide, as they did with Richard Nixon, that they could no longer support the president against impeachment.
Trump was never under investigation
Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) said to Comey, "Did you ever wonder why the only thing that's never been leaked is the fact that the president was not personally under investigation?"
S. Noble (IndependentSentinel) adds Comey told Trump three times that he was not the subject of the Russia investigation.
North Carolina Sen. Richard Burr, the Republican chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, asked Comey, "Did the president at any time ask you to stop the FBI investigation into Russian involvement in the 2016 U.S. elections?"
The former FBI director replied, "Not to my understanding, no."
Burr followed up by asking if any member of the administration made this request, and Comey replied, "no."
Burr asked Comey if it was obstruction of justice. The fired director responded:
"I don't think it's for me to say whether the conversation I had with the president was an effort to obstruct," the former FBI director replied. "I took it as a very disturbing thing, very concerning, but that's a conclusion I'm sure the special counsel will work towards to try and understand what the intention was there, and whether that's an offense."
Comey said he is "not a legal scholar," but how then did he know that "no reasonable prosecutor would bring a case against Hillary Clinton"?
This guy is a joke.
The #FakeNews media has been reporting ad nauseam that anonymous sources say Comey never told Trump he was not under investigation. In fact, those unnamed sources were wrong. Comey, by his own testimony, told Trump three times he was not the subject of the investigation but refused to let him off the hook publicly so Trump could govern.
The anonymous sources are probably not vetted. If they say what the networks want to hear, they go with it. One example: "Sources tell CNN: Comey to testify he never told Trump he was not under FBI investigation". They did issue a retraction on that though others did not. All did not, but all downplayed its significance.
What they emphasized was the alleged "loyalty oath." They must have forgotten that Obama asked Bob Gates for loyalty. He didn't write an explicit memo, but he did mention it.
Comey's notes and the leaks
Jim Hoft (GatewayPundit) reports that Comey took notes of every meeting he had with Trump, but made no notes about his three hour interview with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on her likely criminal email activity -- ne skipped the meeting.
The FBI didn't even swear in Hillary Clinton during her testimony.
Hillary Clinton did not swear an oath to tell the truth before meeting with the FBI for three and a half hours last weekend, and the interview was not recorded, FBI Director James Comey told House lawmakers on Thursday.
The lack of a sworn oath does not remove the possibility of criminal penalties against Clinton if she lied to the FBI, though he said he had "no basis to conclude" that she was untruthful.
"Still a crime to lie to us," Comey told the House Oversight Committee.
FBI policy is not to record interviews as part of its investigations.
Yet the revelations will nonetheless raise questions among Republicans, who have been skeptical of the FBI's investigation and have demanded to see the transcript of the former secretary of State's interview.
Axios is reporting that Trump's "tapes" tweet prompted Comey to leak memos
After his firing and this Trump tweet, Comey asked a close friend of his -- Columbia law professor Daniel Richman -- to leak the content of his memos to the media with the hope of triggering the appointment of a special counsel.
Comey said he was honestly concerned he might lie about the nature of our meeting and I thought it important to document."
Comey said wrote them in an unclassified manner to make them "easier to discuss" across government. He added, "I remember
Truth Feed News reports Comey may have implicated himself into a felony punishable up to 10 years in prison by admitting he leaked a classified memos to his friend to leak to the media. Leaking classified info is illegal according to "U.S. Code 798 -- Disclosure of classified info."
Furthermore, Comey testified under oath that he leaked his cover-his-butt memo(s) to the New York Times after Donald Trump tweeted.
Trump's lawyer Marc Kasowitz said at the National Press Club in D.C. after the hearing that it's on the record the story was leaked the day before the tweet.
The NY Times quoted from the memo the day before the tweet.
That would make Comey a liar and, as Mr. Kasowitz said, acting in a retaliatory manner.
In addition, according to Mr. Kasowitz, the president also never told Mr. Comey -- "I need loyalty, I expect loyalty." He never said it in form and never said it in substance. Of course, the office of the president is entitled to expect loyalty from those who are serving the administration.
What the press is ignoring is that Comey admitted he told Trump three times he was not under investigation, that Trump did not ask for the investigation to be dropped, and that the NY Times story about Trump campaign aides having repeated contact with the Russians was untrue.
The Russian hacks
On Wednesday, Democrat Evelyn Farkas was still spreading the claim that Russia actually altered votes in the election.
This leftist talking point has now been completely debunked.
Truth Feed News is reporting that when asked by Senator Burr "Are you confident that no votes cast in the 2016 presidential election were altered?"
James Comey answered "I'm confident."
The Comey testimony continues to be a disaster for the witch hunters.
Christina Laila (GatewayPundit) says even MSNBC's Chris Matthews said that the notion that President Trump colluded with Russia to interfere in the 2016 U.S. election "came apart" following Comey's testimony.
"The assumption of the critics of the president, of his pursuers, you might say, is that somewhere along the line in the last year is the president had something to do with colluding with the Russians … to affect the election in some way."
"And yet what came apart this morning was that theory -- Flynn wasn't central to the Russian investigation," and secondly, that kills the idea that Flynn might have been in a position to testify against Trump."
"And if that's not the case, where's the there-there?"
Well here you have it, folks! It's over for the Democrats and the media sycophants are finally starting to admit it.
Truth Feed News says the Comey hearing ended up being a complete disaster for Democrats hoping for a smoking gun against President Trump.
James Comey has already implicated himself as a leaker to the media, while admitting Trump never asked him to end the Russia investigation or obstruct justice in any way.
In addition, Comey was forced to admit that Loretta Lynch attempted to protect Hillary Clinton by referring to her email investigation as a "matter" instead of an "investigation."
Loretta Lynch, the former attorney general under Barack Obama, pressured former FBI Director James Comey to downplay the Clinton email server investigation and only refer to it as a "matter," Comey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday.
Comey added later that he was concerned about that direction as it was false. He was further concerned because it aligned with the Clinton campaign's spin on the investigation. He said he complied, however, because he believed the media wouldn't buy into that take on it.
Comey cited that pressure from Lynch to downplay the investigation as one of the reasons he held a press conference to recommend the Department of Justice not seek to indict Clinton.
Comey also cited Lynch's secret tarmac meeting with Bill Clinton as a reason he chose to hold the press conference, he said, as he was concerned about preserving the independence of the FBI.
The Clinton campaign consistently sought to mislead the public by denying that Clinton was the subject of an FBI investigation. Instead, the campaign claimed the investigation was a simple "security inquiry." Comey said he was concerned by Lynch's pressure on him and the FBI to use the campaign's spin, as it appeared it appeared that Lynch was intentionally trying to align the language the FBI was using to match the angle pushed by the Clinton campaign.
Sara A. Carter (Circa) repots Comey said Loretta Lynch told him not to call the Clinton email probe an 'investigation'
Comey testified that Obama's Attorney General Loretta Lynch asked him to call the investigation into Hillary Clinton's email scandal a "matter" and not an "investigation."
Comey said that he was uncomfortable with the unexpected meeting Lynch had with former President Bill Clinton on an airport tarmac last year.
Comey said that meeting convinced him that the independence of the investigation was tainted with regard to the Justice Department and led him to go public with the bureau's findings on Clinton.
Lucian Wintrich (GatewayPundit) adds Comey admitted that former Attorney General Loretta Lynch attempted to suppress/reframe the investigation into former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's illegal private email server. AG Lynch purportedly directed Comey to immediately stop referring to the Hillary probe as an "investigation" or a "probe" and, instead, refer to it as a much more gentle "matter."
Comey went on to clarify during the hearing that the probe into Hilary was not just a "probe" or "investigation" but he reiterated that it was, in fact, a "criminal investigation."
Comey basically accused Loretta Lynch of interfering in an investigation -- the very charge the Democrats have been accusing Trump of.
Comey admits he orchestrated the leaks
Cristina Laila (GatewayPundit) is reporting that Comey admitted he was the leaker, said "I needed to get it out into the public square."
Fired FBI Director James Comey told the Senate Intel Committee on Thursday that he asked a friend of his at Columbia Law School to leak a memo he wrote regarding his conversation with President Trump to the press.
Comey admitted this after Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) asked if he ever shared any of them outside the DOJ.
Of course this was leaked to the New York Times. They ran with the story that Trump was pushing Comey to drop the Flynn investigation.
Heavy is reporting that during his, former FBI Director James Comey said that he instructed a friend to leak a memo to a reporter in order to prompt a special counsel appointment. This was a memo that alleged that Donald Trump had asked Comey in a meeting to let the Michael Flynn investigation go.
"…[I] asked a friend of mine to share the content of the memo with a reporter. I didn't do it myself for a variety of reasons, but I asked him to because I thought it might prompt the appointment of a special counsel, so I asked a close friend of mine to do it."
When asked who this person is, James Comey simply said that he is a good friend from Columbia Law School. Comey did not name names, but he was referring to Daniel C. Richman, a Columbia Law School professor who is a longtime friend and confidant of Comey's. Dan Richman has confirmed as much to The Washington Post.
So who is Daniel C. Richman, the Columbia Law School professor who leaked the Comey memo to a reporter? Here's what you need to know about him.
1. He is a former federal prosecutor who worked with Comey in New York.
2. He teaches at Columbia Law School.
3. He is an adviser to James Comey.
4. He defended James Comey's letter to Congress in October.
5. He previously said that Trump fired Comey because Comey wouldn't pledge his loyalty'
The details are here.
Keith Koffler says it used to be, "just the facts ma'am." The mainstream media always falsely claimed they were objective. But now, with the profit motive so ostentatiously front-and-center, the claim has no meaning whatsoever.
Watch the hype:
Truth Feed News reports Comey was forced to admit a New York Times report that claimed Trump campaign aides had repeated contacts with Russian intelligence was a lie.
This is more evidence that the liberal media has been pushing anti-Trump propaganda as truth that in reality is fiction.
On February 14th, The New York Times published a report titled, "Trump Campaign Aides Had Repeated Contacts With Russian Intelligence."
Comey told Congress "in the main, it was not true."
Sen. Risch asked Comey if he remembered the article.
Comey said he did; "It was about allegedly extensive electronic surveillance," he said.
Risch noted that after the report came out, Comey "sought out both Republican and Democrat senators to tell them that, hey, I don't know where this is coming from, but this is not factual."
Risch told Comey: "So the American people can understand this, that report by the New York Times was not true. Is that a fair statement?"
"In the main – it was not true," Comey said. "The challenge -- and I'm not picking on reporters -- about writing stories about classified information is that people talking about it often don't really know what is going on. And those of us who actually know what's going on aren't talking about it. And we don't call the press to say, hey, you got that thing wrong about this sensitive topic. We just have to leave it there."
Later in the hearing, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) noted that one of the three things Trump asked Comey was: "Can you please tell the American people what these leaders in Congress already know -- what you already know, you told me three times -- that I am not personally under investigation."
"You know," Rubio continued, "this investigation is full of leaks, left and right. I mean, we've learned more from the newspaper sometimes than we do from our open hearings, for sure.
"You ever wonder why, of all the things in this investigation, the only thing that's never been leaked is the fact that the president was not personally under investigation, despite the fact that both Democrats and Republicans and the leadership of Congress knew that and have known that for weeks?"
Scott Johnson (PowerLine) says that on February 14 the New York Times published a story by Michael Schmidt, Mark Mazzetti and Matt Apuzzo with reporting contributed by Adam Goldman and Matthew Rosenberg. The story was headlined "Trump campaign aides had repeated contact with Russian intelligence." The usual "current and former officials" make their cameo appearance when the Times is disclosing, or purporting to disclose, highly classified information.
These were the story's lead paragraphs:
Phone records and intercepted calls show that members of Donald J. Trump's 2016 presidential campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election, according to four current and former American officials.
American law enforcement and intelligence agencies intercepted the communications around the same time they were discovering evidence that Russia was trying to disrupt the presidential election by hacking into the Democratic National Committee, three of the officials said. The intelligence agencies then sought to learn whether the Trump campaign was colluding with the Russians on the hacking or other efforts to influence the election.
In paragraph three they let on: "The officials interviewed in recent weeks said that, so far, they had seen no evidence of such cooperation."
In the course of his testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee today former FBI Director Comey bluntly acknowledged in response to Senator Cotton's question that this story was "almost entirely wrong." I'm guessing that paragraph three accounts for the qualification of this assessment.
The Times has previously posted two corrections to the story. They're the kind of hilariously niggling corrections that leave the implication everything else was just right:
Correction: February 14, 2017
An earlier version of this article misstated the number of people (in addition to Paul Manafort) whom the F.B.I. has examined. It is at least three, not at least four.
Correction: February 19, 2017
An earlier version of a photo caption with this article gave an incorrect middle initial for Paul Manafort. It is J., not D.
Now the Times tells us that they're looking into the story. It would be a shame if this concession were to get lost in the foofaraw over the rest of Comey's testimony today.
But Breitbart is reporting that CNN is still pushing the #FakeNews story, claiming President Trump is "actually under investigation."
Thursday on CNN's "Inside Politics," immediately following a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing featuring testimony from former FBI Director James Comey, network senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin emphasized what he thought were the highlights of the hearing.
However, at the end of rehashing those highlights, despite written testimony from Comey suggesting otherwise, Toobin declared that we now know Trump is under criminal investigation because of this hearing.
Partial transcript as follows:
ANDERSON COOPER: So many key points today to go over that Jim Comey took what Donald Trump said about Michael Flynn as a directive, that he did not go to Jeff Sessions he says because he knew or assumed that Jeff Sessions would have to recuse himself. Jeff Sessions did so two weeks later.
TOOBIN: And I think the February 14 meeting remains the focus and the crucial issue in this whole investigation because that is the most incriminating act that the president took in terms of a possible obstruction of justice case telling Jim Comey and Comey clearly felt he was ordered to stop this investigation.
COOPER: Even though the president said, "I hope."
TOOBIN: Yes. It was an interesting exchange -- it was with the senator from Maine, Angus King, who they both -- the famous line about Thomas Beckett, "Who will rid me of this meddlesome previous." You don't tell someone, but you know you send the message. There is also the point where there is the clearest conflict between Comey and Trump.
COOPER: Because the president has denied –
TOOBIN: Trump has said I didn't make any sort of order. There was that question at the press conference that we played. So I think, you know, that remains the most important point of conflict. And the other point I think Dana alluded to this, but I think it's very important – there was a — in the letter that Trump wrote firing Comey, he said three times you told me that I was not under investigation and that was in May. Well, here we know in June Donald Trump is under criminal investigation, and that's a big deal, and that's important.
Comey is a coward. He admitted what we all know.
Eren Moreno (TruthFeed) reports that when being questioned by Senator Feinstein why didn't confront the president he said "That's a great question. Maybe if I was stronger, I would have."
Comey proves again that he was never fit to be director of the FBI because he was too weak to even be direct with President Trump. All of his gripes are clouded by the fact they were just based on his internal insecure feelings, not what actually took place.
Sorry, Liberals, but no one in their right mind would impeach a president for saying "he hoped" something would happen.
The five biggest losers from Comey's bizarre, whiny testimony were Comey; the #FakeNews media; Loretta Lynch; The New York Times; the Democrats and Loretta Lynch.
"If you shoot at a king, you must kill him."
Comey fired and missed, and now he will have to pay the Piper!