The Hillary Clinton whinefest continues. I had hoped that like the falling out of favor Kardashians and Caitlyn (aka Bruce) Jenner, she’d just start fading out of an audience, but she feels compelled to keep complaining about all those who cost her the election. This week she blamed James Comey and “Russian” hackers for her loss.
There are two parts to the Russian collusion claim by the Hillaryites. They contend, first, that there was some still unspecified evidence to support a Russian preference for Trump. Then they claim that it was Russians who hacked her email accounts. This week both of those claims proved to be without substance.
In Congressional testimony, the only basis for the first assumption was the purely factually unsupported, speculative belief by FBI director Comey that Russia preferred Trump. The only basis for the second was that the FBI was examining contacts between Trump and the Russians -- a suggestion Comey swatted off. Paul Sperry writes in the New York Post:
It turns out the FBI probe doesn’t even focus on Trump or his key campaign aides. It centers almost exclusively on a former Merrill Lynch executive who was based in Moscow a decade ago.His name is Carter Page, and he never formally worked for the Trump campaign. In fact, he first showed up on the FBI’s radar three years before Trump announced his candidacy.Page is the main investigative target and apparently the only one remotely tied to the Trump campaign to have his communications targeted with a FISA warrant. To obtain that surveillance warrant, the FBI relied on a discredited dossier, which will make it hard to prosecute Page.The opposition research firm behind the dossier, which alleges nefarious collusion between Trump and Putin, is Fusion GPS, which conducts “political disinformation campaigns” -- sometimes for Moscow. “The relationship casts further doubt on an already highly dubious dossier,” Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley wrote the Justice Department in a recent letter.Adding to suspicions, the author of the dodgy dossier may have been on the FBI’s payroll, according to Grassley. The GOP senator asked Comey about “payments” the bureau made to researcher Christopher Steele, and Comey dodged the question without denying payments.So nine months in, this is where the FBI’s investigation stands: No evidence of collaboration between the Trump campaign and Moscow, something even Obama’s intelligence czar verified. No charges against any Trump aides for espionage. And one case against a single, tangentially connected suspect built on tenuous evidence at best.
It’s hard, in any event, to comprehend how Comey could have been clueless enough to give an ounce of credence to the “Christopher Steele (Hillary’s GPS-commissioned) “Dossier” -- so clueless that he included it in his “final intelligence community report on Russian election meddling.
Comey couldn’t say whether GPS is, in fact, part of the Russian intelligence operation, but there is some evidence it is.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee who also sits on the intelligence committee, told CNN on Wednesday that she does not “at this time” have evidence of collusion between Trump associates and Russia during the campaign.Fusion GPS is now the subject of a formal complaint at the Justice Department, facing allegations the company violated the Foreign Agents Registration Act, as is the company’s founder former Wall Street Journal reporter Glenn Simpson.
Let's repeat this more simply: the FBI Russian-meddling investigation and the FISA warrant used to electronically surveil Trump and his associates during the campaign appears to have been based on entirely on a dossier written by a man hired by Hillary through GPS which is itself being charged with being an unregistered agent for Russia. But there is more: The author of the dossier himself says it is an unreliable account.
During the heated hearing, Grassley also chided the FBI for giving him “materially inconsistent” information and specifically referenced Steele, noting “The man who wrote the dossier admitted in court that it has unverified claims. Does that sound like a reliable basis for law enforcement or intelligence actions?”Fox News also spoke to Steele’s solicitor Nicola Cain in London, who had no comment citing ongoing litigation.A British court document, first reported by The Guardian and signed by Steele, offers a glimpse into his company’s work for Fusion GPS. The document describes "unsolicited intelligence" and "raw intelligence" that “needed to be [sic] analysed and further investigated/verified.”
At the least -- even giving credence to GPS’ defense that it never lobbied for Russia -- GPS concedes it provided supporting material for the law firm that lobbied to lift the U.S. sanctions on Russia. In sum, GPS has closer ties to Russia than Trump ever had.
Hillary Clinton engaged GPS to dig up dirt on Trump. Then his unnamed Republican opponents followed on. It's unclear whether the FBI picked up the tab when they dropped GPS' services.
Grassley stressed his concerns that “the FBI has relied on the document to justify [Comey's] current investigation. There have been reports that the FBI agreed to pay the author of the dossier, who paid his sources, who also paid their sub sources. Where did the money come from and what motivated the people writing the checks?”
Maybe it was the FBI that paid them. Maybe it was Planned Parenthood, which GPS also works for. Planned Parenthood is strongly backed by Hillary which is in Republican gunsights for defunding.
This is the same opposition research firm that was hired by Planned Parenthood to discredit the Center for Medical Progress’ sting videos, revealing that Planned Parenthood representatives selling aborted baby tissue samples. They were also hired to investigate Trump’s sexual history in 2015 and conduct anti-Romney opposition research for the Democrats in 2012.
Outside the hearing room, there’s even more evidence to drive the final nail into this fairy tale.
The hacker Guccifer says it wasn’t the Russians -- it was he who got into Hillary’s unsecured email server:
The Romanian hacker who first exposed Hillary Clinton's private email address is making a bombshell new claim -- that he also gained access to the former Secretary of State's "completely unsecured" server."It was like an open orchid on the Internet," Marcel Lehel Lazar, who uses the devilish handle Guccifer, told NBC News in an exclusive interview from a prison in Bucharest. "There were hundreds of folders."
In sum, all the available evidence shows that the Russians did not hack Hillary’s emails, that the dossier which was the basis for the FISA warrants is both unreliable and a paid confection of Trump’s political opponents.
This does not look good for James Comey.
It also doesn’t look good for either Comey or Hillary that her closest, most confidential aide, Huma Abedin, forwarded classified emails addressed to Hillary to her husband Anthony Weiner who, in turn, maintained them in a file reportedly marked “life insurance.” For one thing, Hillary said she never received or transmitted classified material on her (completely unsecured) email accounts. "I never sent or received any classified material while being investigated by the FBI.” For another, Huma Abedin told the bureau in an April interview that she used the account on the clintonemail.com domain only for issues related to the secretary’s personal affairs, “such as communicating with her friends.” For work-related records, Abedin claimed she primarily used the email account provided to her by the State Department.
The FBI apparently relied on this explanation without seeking to examine her home account. It wasn’t until October when local law enforcement was investigating Weiner’s sexting with an underage girl that they noticed the classified emails and the FBI got involved.
Comey still has done nothing to indict her – because, he claims, as he did with regard to Hillary’s mishandling of classified material, that he couldn’t find an “intent” to violate the law, a requirement that exists in his own head, not the relevant law. Doubtless, he understood how lacking in credibility it would have been to go after Abedin for the same sort of conduct for which he’d absolved Hillary.
Not responded to at the hearing this week was a claim made that among the hacked emails was one, reported by the New York Times that "Attorney General Lynch would protect Secretary Clinton by making sure the FBI investigation 'didn't go too far.'"
How, and when, did you first learn of this document? Also, who sent it and who received it?
COMEY: That's not a question I can answer in this forum, Mr. Chairman, because it would call for a classified response. I have briefed leadership of the intelligence committees on that particular issue, but I can't talk about it here.”
A cynic might argue that given that Lynch was his boss and her department had the authority to indict, not him, had he somehow blasted through the Lynch wall around justice, and obtained an indictment, no D.C. jury would have indicted her and the Democrats would have had a martyr to keep contesting the election results -- but with a more substantive basis than they now have. (If you recall the special prosecutor in the Whitewater case said the only reason they had not indicted her for perjury was because no D.C. jury would convict her.) By laying out the evidence and inventing the “no intent” explanation for not seeking criminal prosecution he let voters know how corrupt she was and allowed them to be the jury, not 12 Democrats on a D.C. jury. That’s as much credit as I would ever give him.
Still, Comey remains as head of the FBI, and Hillary's fans have not given up on her. There is a new fantasy website called Hillary Beat Trump where they meet and pretend she won.
HillaryBeatTrump.com calls itself “News from the Real America,” where the “majority rules,” and the pantsuit-wearing political goddess has somehow, inexplicably triumphed over Trump.With headlines like “Historians say Clinton’s presidency is already in “all time top 5,” and “NYT pans Clinton’s “oppressively intelligent press conference” as “boring and too sane,” the site takes “alternative facts” to the next level: deliberately allowing progressives to live in a well-decorated alternative universe.The website claims to be satire, but it also says that it’s an active part of the organized anti-Trump movement, the “resistance.” On its about page, it whines, “In the midst of a Constitutional crisis, this is our response. Long live the true president, Hillary Rodham Clinton.”It is not immediately clear what they mean by “Constitutional crisis,” but it probably has something to do with the Electoral College.
Hillary seems to reside in fantasyland along with her diehard fans. She islaunching a PAC to fund “the resistance.” But even some of her supporters have had enough of her petulant screeching that she was robbed. Clinton supporter the New York Daily News’ Gersh Kuntzman is one of them:
Kuntzman said that Hillary may be sorry, but her supporters, including Kuntzman, are suffering the consequences while she makes millions expanding on the trip-ups that killed her presidential hopes in a memoir, which the two-time presidential loser described as a painful process. She wouldn’t elaborate on those mistakes by the way in her discussion with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour at the Women for Women International luncheon on Tuesday.Kuntzman didn’t blame Russia. He didn’t blame FBI Director Comey. Kuntzman accepted that Clinton’s loss was her making and hers alone. Period. At the same time, he did link to the various anti-Trump columns he wrote over the past few months. So, of course, he’s no friend of the Trump White House, but I do respect how he’s able to accept that Trump is president. It’s Clinton’s fault, and she needs to go away.
David Axelrod has also told her to move on:
CNN's "New Day" called in former President Barack Obama's adviser to discuss Mrs. Clinton's news conference on Tuesday, which framed her failed presidential bid as the result of forces beyond her control. Mr. Axelrod told co-hosts Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota that he was baffled why she would continue to revisit the issue since "it takes a lot of work to lose to Donald Trump.""Jim Comey didn't tell her not to campaign in Wisconsin after the convention," said Mr. Obama's winning campaign strategist. "Jim Comey didn't say, 'Don't put any resources into Michigan until the final week of the campaign.' One of the things that hindered her in the campaign was a sense that she never fully was willing to take responsibility for her mistakes, particularly that server."
She probably won't, though. Her overweening ambition has always taken precedence over the nation’s interests and the Democrats never criticized her for any of her misconduct. It is only now, when she threatens the party’s interests, that all but the deluded fantasists are raising a stink and telling her to “just go home.”