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Stefanik: Rooting Out Deep State Corruption Is a Top Priority for House Republicans


BY: TRISTAN JUSTICE | JANUARY 25, 2023

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2023/01/25/stefanik-rooting-out-deep-state-corruption-is-a-top-priority-for-house-republicans/

Elise Stefanik

House GOP Conference Chair Elise Stefanik of New York pledged that aggressive oversight of executive agencies to rid the federal government of overt corruption will be a top priority for Republicans in the new Congress. On Tuesday, Stefanik became one of a dozen Republican lawmakers appointed by House Speaker Kevin McCarthy to serve on the Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government.

In an exclusive interview with The Federalist on Wednesday morning, Stefanik characterized the select panel, which was established under the Judiciary Committee led by Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, as House Republicans’ primary vehicle for pursuing accountability for the Biden administration’s abuses.

“A top priority for House Republicans is rooting out the weaponization of the federal government against everyday Americans,” said Stefanik. The No. 3 lawmaker in GOP leadership highlighted the nation’s top intelligence agencies as the committee’s primary focus.

[POLL: 4 In 5 Americans See Two-Tiered Justice System]

“The FBI and DOJ are ripe for oversight, and they deserve oversight,” she said, while also pledging that investigations would come for the Internal Revenue Service and National Institutes of Health. Both agencies “have run rampant in targeting Americans,” Stefanik said, adding that Congress has a “constitutional duty” to conduct meaningful oversight.

“Democrats failed to do that when we were in one-party rule,” she added.

Whom the committee plans to subpoena remains an open question. “We’re going to make that decision as a select committee,” Stefanik said.

Other prominent members of the Republican conference named to the panel include Kentucky Congressman Thomas Massie and Wyoming Rep. Harriet Hageman. In August, Hageman successfully toppled three-term incumbent Liz Cheney in the Wyoming Republican primary by 37 points. Cheney, who ran House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s Select Committee on Jan. 6 as vice chair, relied on Democrats switching parties to blunt a loss that might have otherwise been near unanimous among the state’s Republicans.

McCarthy endorsed Hageman in the race two years after Cheney endorsed a primary challenge to Massie from her perch in leadership. In the spring of 2021, House Republicans replaced Cheney with Stefanik as GOP conference chair.

Stefanik plans to take a lead role on the new panel probing the weaponization of the federal government as she did during the first impeachment saga of former President Donald Trump in 2019.

“The government has the responsibility to serve the American people, not go after them,” she said.

While Pelosi barred McCarthy’s appointments to the Select Committee on Jan. 6, Stefanik said the new House speaker was likely to seat Democrats on the probe. No minority appointments, however, have been made so far.

On Tuesday night, McCarthy kept his word to bar California Democrat Reps. Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell from the House Intelligence Committee. McCarthy has also pledged to kick Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar off the Foreign Affairs Committee. Stefanik told The Federalist that while it was ultimately the speaker’s choice to approve Democrat appointments to the Select Committee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government, neither Schiff, Swalwell, nor Omar would likely be admitted to the panel.

McCarthy explained to reporters on Capitol Hill Tuesday night that the trio of lawmakers would still serve on committees but none related to the nation’s top secrets.

“They’ll serve on committees,” McCarthy said, “but they will not serve on a place that has national security relevance because integrity matters to me.”


Tristan Justice is the western correspondent for The Federalist. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and The Daily Signal. His work has also been featured in Real Clear Politics and Fox News. Tristan graduated from George Washington University where he majored in political science and minored in journalism. Follow him on Twitter at @JusticeTristan or contact him at Tristan@thefederalist.com.

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Ex-FBI Official Who Helped Launch Crossfire Hurricane Charged With Laundry List Of Crimes


BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND | JANUARY 24, 2023

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2023/01/24/ex-fbi-official-who-helped-launch-crossfire-hurricane-charged-with-laundry-list-of-crimes/

Oleg Deripaska at WEF
Monday’s news is a body blow to the FBI, which already has two black eyes from the last seven years of scandals.

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The Department of Justice unsealed twin indictments on Monday against Charles McGonigal, a former FBI section chief involved in the decision to launch the Crossfire Hurricane investigation against then-Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump.

Here are six takeaways from yesterday’s news.

1. McGonigal Charged with Conspiring with Russian Interpreter to Launder Money — and More.

Monday morning brought breaking news that the U.S. attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York had unsealed a five-count indictment that charged McGonigal and Sergey Shestakov with violating the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, or IEEPA, and with conspiring to launder money. Prosecutors also charged Shestakov with lying to the FBI. 

McGonigal, as the indictment explained, was previously a “senior official” in the FBI, having been employed by the bureau from 1996 to 2018, and working in Russian counterintelligence, organized crime matters, and counter-espionage. From 2016 until his retirement in 2018, McGonigal was the special agent in charge of the Counterintelligence Division of the FBI’s New York Field Office, a role in which he supervised and investigated Russian oligarchs, according to the indictment.

Shestakov, for his part, is described as a “former Soviet and Russian diplomat,” who was in that role from 1979 until his retirement in 1993. The press release announcing the charges notes that Shestakov is now a U.S. citizen, and he has “more recently served as an interpreter for United States federal courts and prosecutors.”

The indictment charged that McGonigal and Shestakov violated the sanctions imposed by the United States on Oleg Deripaska, a Russian oligarch, in violation of the IEEPA. Specifically, the indictment alleged the duo, in or about 2021, “agreed to and did investigate a rival oligarch of Deripaska in return for concealed payment from Deripaska.” 

According to Monday’s press release, McGonigal and Shestakov negotiated with a representative of Deripaska, identified as Agent-1 in the indictment, “to conceal Deripaska’s involvement” in the relationship “by, among other means, not directly naming Deripaska in electronic communications,” using instead various nicknames, such as “the big guy.” McGonigal, Shestakov, and Deripaska also allegedly used “shell companies,” to hide the payments coming from Deripaska.

McGonigal allegedly first met Deripaska’s representative, Agent-1, while still employed by the FBI, but then in the spring of 2021, after McGonigal had retired from the bureau, he was allegedly solicited to work directly for Deripaska. Specifically, the indictment charged that Deripaska hired McGonigal to investigate a second Russian oligarch with whom Deripaska had an ongoing dispute over control of a Russian corporation. In exchange, Deripaska allegedly agreed to pay the partners $51,280, followed by monthly payments of $41,790, although the payments were made to a New Jersey corporation, which then transferred the funds to McGonigal and Shestakov. 

The activities among McGonigal, Shestakov, and Deripaska’s intermediaries “largely” ceased, according to the indictment, upon the FBI executing search warrants and seizing McGonigal and Shestakov’s electronic devices on Nov. 21, 2021. Shortly before the FBI executed the search warrant, Shestakov allegedly lied to the FBI about his relationship with McGonigal, which formed the basis of the false statement charge against Shestakov.

2. McGonigal Is in More McTrouble

If the indictment in the Southern District of New York were not enough to shake McGonigal’s world, an hour later the Department of Justice released a second press release announcing the unsealing of a second indictment in the District of Columbia. This indictment charged McGonigal with making multiple false statements, concealing material facts, and falsifying records or documents — nine counts in total.

Underlying the nine criminal counts were allegations that McGonigal failed to accurately complete financial disclosure reports, which McGonigal was required to do on an annual basis, and failed to accurately report unofficial foreign travel and ongoing professional or official contracts with foreign nationals. 

The accusations are related to McGonigal’s alleged failure to accurately report his financial situation, connections with foreign nationals, and his relationship with several unnamed individuals. Those individuals are identified as Persons A, B, C, and D, with McGonigal receiving large cash payments in exchange for what appear to be questionable “favors.”

For instance, the indictment described Person A as a naturalized U.S. citizen who was born in Albania and who had previously worked for the Albanian intelligence agency. It then alleged McGonigal “hid aspects of his relationship with Person A,” including “that he had accepted more than $225,000 from Person A, had traveled to Europe with Person A, and met numerous foreign nationals through Person A.” 

It was McGonigal, according to the indictment, who approached Person A with the money-making scheme, when “no later than August, 2017,” he “inquired as to whether Person A could provide money to him.” Then on Sept. 7, 2017, Person A allegedly indicated he “was working on the money.” Thereafter, McGonigal traveled with Person A to Albania where he allegedly lobbied the Albanian prime minister on behalf of Person A. 

Over the next several months, McGonigal allegedly received three cash payments from Person A, ranging from approximately $65,000 to $80,000 each time. The indictment further charged that “McGonigal caused the FBI-NY to open a criminal investigation of a U.S. citizen in which Person A would serve as a confidential human source.” 

Specifically, on Nov. 25, 2017, McGonigal allegedly informed a federal prosecutor of “a potential new criminal investigation involving a U.S. citizen who had registered to perform lobbying work in the United States on behalf of an Albanian political party different from the one in which the Prime Minister was a member.” Then on Feb. 26, 2018, the FBI office “formally opened a criminal investigation focused on the ‘U.S. citizen lobbyist’ at defendant McGonigal’s request and upon his guidance.” 

The indictment suggests McGonigal opened the investigation into “the U.S. citizen lobbyist” to further his monetary relationship with Person A and others, with the allegations stressing that McGonigal remained in communication with the prime minister after Person A arranged for them to meet in September of 2017. Person A and Person B, the latter identified in the indictment as a former senior Albanian government official and informal adviser to the Albanian prime minister, both then assisted the FBI in the investigation of “the U.S. citizen lobbyist.” 

Elsewhere, the indictment charged that McGonigal attempted to arrange a meeting with Persons C and D and U.S. government authorities to benefit from the unnamed Person A. Among other things, the indictment claimed that McGonigal proposed Person D pay Person A’s company $500,000 in exchange for the scheduling of a meeting with a representative from the U.S. delegation to the United Nations. McGonigal then worked to coordinate the meeting, according to the charges.

3. The Shockwaves of This Latest FBI Scandal Hit Spygate

The two indictments alone represent another huge scandal to the FBI: McGonigal was no low-level agent but rather a special agent in charge of the Counterintelligence Division for the New York Field Office. And although McGonigal retired in 2018, some of his allegedly criminal conduct took place while still in that position and allegedly involved the launching of an investigation of a U.S. citizen who was lobbying for a political opponent of one of McGonigal’s foreign contacts.

In isolation, yesterday’s news is a body blow to the bureau, which already has two black eyes from the last seven years of scandals. But the New York indictment of McGonigal reverberates more directly to the SpyGate scandal and specifically the failure of the DOJ to pursue Christopher Steele for his own work for Deripaska.

The inspector general’s report on FISA abuse concluded that “Steele performed work for Russian Oligarch 1’s attorney on Russian Oligarch 1’s litigation matters,” with Deripaska the generically named “Oligarch 1.” Steele, the OIG report continued, “passed information to Department attorney Bruce Ohr advocating on behalf of one of Russian Oligarch 1’s companies regarding U.S. sanctions.” The report further found that Ohr and Steele’s communications concerning Deripaska occurred “in 2016 during the time period before and after Steele was terminated as a [confidential human source].”

Additionally, the OIG report connected that “Ohr said that he understood Steele was ‘angling’ for Ohr to assist him with his clients’ issues,” and that “Ohr stated that Steele was hoping that Ohr would intercede on his behalf with the Department attorney handling a matter involving a European company.”

Steele had reportedly also previously worked for Deripaska’s London-based attorney Paul Hauser, and Steele “appeared to lobby on behalf of Deripaska through a D.C.-based attorney, Adam Waldman.” Steele, however, never registered as a lobbyist under the Foreign Agent Registration Act, or “FARA.”

Yet Steele has never been charged with violating FARA. Why?

While this question has been asked again and again, the federal charges against McGonigal for his work on Deripaska’s behalf bring this question to the forefront again. 

4. Speaking of Deripaska, There’s Another SpyGate Scandal Unresolved

The raising of Deripaska’s name in yesterday’s indictment also offers the chance to revisit another SpyGate scandal yet unresolved — a lesser noticed one buried in the hundreds of pages of the inspector general’s report on FISA abuse.

As I previously detailed, the IG report noted that on Dec. 7, 2016, Bruce Ohr called an interagency meeting to discuss Deripaska. During that meeting, Ohr apparently suggested trying to work with Deripaska, and later told a subordinate that the basis for the suggestion was that “Steele provided information that the Trump campaign had been corrupted by the Russians,” and that the corruption went all the way to President-elect Trump. So Ohr apparently suggested cutting a deal with a Russian oligarch based on the fake Steele dossier. 

It also appears that agents considered cutting a deal with Deripaska to possibly ensnare Paul Manafort, with the end goal being to take down Trump — another startling possibility that would reveal our FBI viewing Trump as worse than the Russian oligarch.

To date, little has been explored of possible efforts by the DOJ or FBI to go easy on Deripaska for the great goal of getting Trump. But maybe the renewed focus on Deripaska will resurrect these overlooked details.

5. McGonigal’s Role in Crossfire Hurricane Raises Huge Red Flags

The charges against McGonigal also raise concerns about his role in the decision to launch Crossfire Hurricane. 

In his congressional testimony, FBI Agent Jonathan Moffa testified that from July 28 to July 31 of 2016, officials in FBI headquarters discussed whether to open a counterintelligence investigation on Trump, purportedly based on information provided by a “friendly foreign government.” That information consisted of an Australian diplomat telling his American counterpart that Trump’s volunteer campaign adviser George Papadopoulos had suggested the Russians had dirt on Hillary Clinton. In explaining how he had learned of the discussions over whether to open the investigation that became known as Crossfire Hurricane, Moffa testified he had received an email from McGonigal, the then-section chief in FBI headquarters, that contained the reporting from the friendly foreign government. 

After McGonigal helped decide to launch the Crossfire Hurricane investigation into the Trump campaign, FBI Director James Comey named him “the special agent in charge of the Counterintelligence Division for the New York Field Office” in October of 2016. In that position, McGonigal stayed engaged in aspects of the investigation, with his “team” questioning Carter Page in March of 2017. McGonigal would later also express concerns about the Page FISA leaking after a briefing to the House Intel Committee, and sure enough, a few weeks later the story leaked.

Given that if the allegations in the indictments are true, McGonigal has proven himself willing to be bought, his involvement in Crossfire Hurricane is extremely troubling. 

6. A New Life for Durham

While McGonigal’s involvement in the Crossfire Hurricane investigation raises serious concerns, it also provides one final chance to learn the depth of the SpyGate scandal. With McGonigal facing serious federal criminal charges in two different districts, the incentive for him to seek a deal with the government is high. Given his involvement in the decision to launch Crossfire Hurricane and his later involvement in at least portions of the investigation, he may just have something to offer Special Counsel John Durham.

And McGonigal may have just the attorney to cut that deal: Seth DuCharme. DuCharme is listed as McGonigal’s attorney of record in court filings, and emails released pursuant to FOIA requests show DuCharme previously worked for Durham.

Whether McGonigal has anything of value to Durham, however, remains to be seen.


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

5 Reasons Corrupt Media Are Ignoring The Scandalous ‘Twitter Files’


BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND | JANUARY 18, 2023

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2023/01/18/5-reasons-corrupt-media-are-ignoring-the-scandalous-twitter-files/

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Reporters refusing to cover ‘The Twitter Files’ prefer their role as propagandists to journalists.

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Soon after Elon Musk acquired Twitter, he gave a few reporters access to the tech giant’s internal communications, resulting in scandalous revelations about Twitter’s routine collusion with and censorship direction from the FBI — revelations you likely haven’t heard much about from the corporate media.

“The Twitter Files” showed that this symbiotic relationship between the feds and a so-called private company involved the suppression of the Hunter Biden laptop story right before the 2020 election, the silencing of Covid dissenters, and even the squelching of regime-challenging journalists, among other bombshells. According to the communications, the federal government paid Twitter some $3,000,000 for its assistance. 

Notwithstanding these explosive revelations, backed up by the internal communications of high-level Twitter executives, the corporate media have ignored the scandals. But why? 

Here are five reasons the corrupt press has refused to adequately cover “The Twitter Files.”

1. Giving Credence To Trump’s 2020 Election Claims Would Be Unforgivable

Accurate coverage of “The Twitter Files” would require the media to report on the FBI’s role in burying the Hunter Biden laptop story shortly before the 2020 election. Among other things, “The Twitter Files” revealed the FBI met monthly and then weekly with Twitter’s team, warning them of various foreign efforts to interfere in the election. Those internal communications, when coupled with an earlier statement Yoel Roth, the then-head of Twitter’s site integrity, provided to the Federal Election Commission, establish the FBI was behind Twitter’s censorship of the Hunter Biden story.

“Since 2018 he had regular meetings with the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI, and industry peers regarding election security,” Roth stated. “During these weekly meetings, the federal law enforcement agencies communicated that they expected ‘hack-and-leak operations’ by state actors might occur in the period shortly before the 2020 presidential election, likely in October,” Roth said, adding that from those meetings he learned “that there were rumors that a hack-and-leak operation would involve Hunter Biden.” Roth then explained that those “prior warnings of a hack-and-leak operation and doubts about the provenance of the materials republished in the N.Y. Post articles,” led Twitter to conclude “the materials could have been obtained through hacking.” 

When Roth’s statement is read together with the internal emails establishing that Twitter banned the New York Post’s blockbuster reporting under the guise that the materials had been hacked, the FBI’s responsibility for causing the censorship of this politically explosive story is clear. And because the FBI knew Hunter’s laptop had not been hacked and that the materials on it were authentic, by prompting the censorship of the story, the FBI knowingly interfered in the 2020 election.

Or as Donald Trump put it on Truth Social after “The Twitter Files” broke: “The biggest thing to come out of the Twitter Targeting Hoax is that the Presidential Election was RIGGED — And that’s as big as it can get!!!”

For the press to honestly cover “The Twitter Files,” then, would require it to give credence to Trump’s “RIGGED” claims — something it just cannot stomach. Instead, the corrupt media have responded to “The Twitter Files” with silence or spin.

2. Being the Press Means Never Having to Say You’re Sorry

A second reason the press refuses to cover “The Twitter Files” stems from the corrupt media’s inability to acknowledge its own bias, wrongdoing, and hackery. To report on the many scandals exposed by the files would require media elites to face their own involvement in censoring news and their failings as so-called journalists.

While historically, journalists stood in unity with their fellow reporters, when Twitter and other tech companies censored and then deplatformed the New York Post, the press — in the main — remained silent. In contrast, when Musk temporarily suspended reporters’ accounts who had posted location tracking information in violation of Twitter’s new rules, a thud sounded as the same journalists collectively collapsed on their fainting couches. 

Not only did these supposed standard-bearers of journalism not condemn the censorship, most ignored the story. Those that did not ignore it, such as NPR, discussed not the details of the scandal, but their justification for ignoring it. “We don’t want to waste our time on stories that are not really stories, and we don’t want to waste the listeners’ and readers’ time on stories that are just pure distractions,” NPR intoned.

Covering “The Twitter Files” now would be an implicit admission that they were wrong not to report on the laptop story and that they were equally amiss in failing to condemn the censorship of the Post. 

“The Twitter Files” also raise an uncomfortable set of questions for news outlets, namely: Did the FBI warn legacy media that supposed Russian disinformation, in the form of potentially hacked materials involving Hunter Biden, would drop? Is that why they ignored the story and allowed the censorship of the Post to go unchallenged? 

Reporting on “The Twitter Files” would force legacy outlets to confront the potential reality that the FBI had played them and that they were willing to trust the government rather than be a check on its abuse. 

“The Twitter Files” also vindicate Musk and counter the media narrative that his Twitter takeover spelled the beginning of the end for the tech giant. Not only did the avalanche of predicted hate speech not materialize, but under Musk’s leadership, Twitter’s newfound transparency has served both the public interest and a (functioning) free press. Reporting on these facts, then, would require the press not only to acknowledge its own failings but to apologize to Musk and admit their own complicity — things they are apparently unable to do.

3. Condemning the Feds Would Shut Down Sources and Hurt Their Heroes

The media are likely also ignoring “The Twitter Files” to protect their sources — both literally and figuratively. 

Many of the same FBI agents and governmental officials, such as Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., who pushed for Twitter to censor speech probably serve as regular sources for the legacy media. This scenario is especially likely if the FBI pushed for the press to censor the Hunter Biden story, as it had with Twitter and Facebook. Reporting on “The Twitter Files” would thus force the media to hammer some of the same individuals who give them valuable leaks. Condemning those individuals could shut down various source networks the corrupt media can’t risk.

The media likely also don’t want to “hurt” their sources or the FBI agents who pushed the Russia disinformation lie to tech companies because they see themselves on the same anti-Trump team. 

Just as the media refuse to condemn the Department of Justice and FBI agents involved in pushing the Russia-collusion hoax because the press favored the unwarranted attacks on Trump that hamstrung his administration, the leftist media silently applauds the FBI’s interference in the 2020 election because it helped deny Trump a second term. 

In this regard, the legacy media and the deep state share the same worldview — that the ends justify the means. The media will thus keep mum about what the FBI did because they’re grateful that intelligence agencies destroyed Trump’s chance to defeat Biden by prompting the censorship of the October surprise. 

4. The Russian Bogeyman Must Be Preserved at All Costs

Ignoring “The Twitter Files” also helps the media preserve their Russia, Russia, Russia narrative.

The various “Twitter File” threads revealed several damning details concerning Russia’s supposed interference in American politics. First, they exposed how the FBI and federal intelligence agencies used Russia’s supposed interference in the 2016 election to push for more resources and collaboration with tech giants. Second, the files revealed that, notwithstanding federal agents’ claims, there were no systemic efforts by Russia to use Twitter to interfere in the U.S. elections. To the contrary, the internal communications showed the FBI pushing for evidence of Russian interference and Twitter executives countering that they weren’t seeing issues.

Third, as detailed above, “The Twitter Files” exposed that the Hunter Biden laptop story was not only not Russian disinformation but that the FBI used that excuse anyway to prompt censorship of the story.

Fourth and finally, the internal Twitter communications showed that the trending of the #ReleaseTheMemo hashtag was not prompted by Russian bots or Russian-connected accounts and that Democrats such as Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Schiff’s claims to the contrary were false. Those communications also revealed that even though Twitter negated the Russian-interference theory — telling politicians point blank that the evidence showed #ReleseTheMemo was trending because of organic interest in the hashtag — Democrats and the media continued to push that false storyline.

Reporting on “The Twitter Files” would require the media to first acknowledge they were wrong in their #ReleaseTheMemo hashtag coverage. But what’s more, covering Twitter’s internal communications would force the press to dispel the notion that Russia is the bogeyman behind every Republican candidate and every negative story about Democrats.

Corrupt media need to maintain Russia as the bad guy for future elections, however, and to counter future scandals affecting Democrats. Accurate reporting on “The Twitter Files” would lessen the effects of any later resort to a Russia, Russia, Russia narrative — and the press can’t have that.

5. Reporters Prefer Their Role as Propagandists to Journalists

While there are many practical reasons the press refuses to report on “The Twitter Files,” as a matter of principle, it all comes down to one: The legacy media have none.

The so-called journalists working at outlets that were once the standard by which all journalists were judged today value politics more than they do their professional obligations. Informing the public and providing a check on the rich, the powerful, and the politicians are no longer the end goals of corrupt reporters; rather, they seek to use their power to advance their own personal beliefs and agendas. 

In short, the reporters refusing to cover “The Twitter Files” prefer their role as propagandists to journalists.


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

Biden Turned Classified Documents into A Scandal to Get Trump, But Who’s Laughing Now?


BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND | JANUARY 12, 2023

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2023/01/12/biden-turned-classified-documents-into-a-scandal-to-get-trump-but-whos-laughing-now/

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This entire scandal is a joke. And now, thanks to the get-Trump franchise, irresponsible Biden will be forever cast as a laughingstock.

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News broke late yesterday that a search of the president’s home in Wilmington, Delaware, uncovered additional classified documents from Joe Biden’s time as vice president, stored unsecured in the family garage and separately in another room of the house. And I still haven’t stopped laughing.

Since August of 2022, when the FBI launched an unprecedented raid on former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home, the entirety of the anti-Trump universe insisted — insisted — that the recently departed commander-in-chief’s possession of documents marked classified was a big f-ing deal. 

Never mind that Trump had declassification authority as the president of the United States, or that the documents were stored at his home under the watchful eye of his Secret Service protection. Ignore too the fact that the National Archives could have worked with Trump to coordinate the storage of the documents under the technical possession of the government, but at a location of the former president’s choosing, just as was done with former President Barack Obama. 

But because the loony left couldn’t resist one more sequel in their get-Trump franchise, as Trump exited the Oval Office, a backbench bureaucrat at the National Archives launched another hoax meant to finally, finally destroy Trump. Several leaks and a year-plus later, the plot culminated in the raid of Trump’s home followed by the appointment of a special counsel to investigate Trump.

And because the National Archives and the Biden administration went nuclear against Trump for possessing documents at Mar-a-Lago marked classified, they have no option but to pretend to treat Joe Biden’s possession of classified documents in an equally serious way. So, the National Archives referred the matter to the Department of Justice, just as it had with Trump, even though when it was Secretary of State Hillary Clinton mishandling classified documents, no criminal referral followed. 

Likewise, Attorney General Merrick Garland directed a U.S. attorney to investigate Biden’s mishandling of the classified documents, to create the impression of equal justice under the law. Of course, given Garland’s appointment of a special counsel to investigate Trump, a plain ol’ ordinary U.S. attorney doesn’t level up, and for that, the attorney general is already receiving heat.

But the heat comes from the hypocrisy, not the gravity of the situation. 

The Biden classified documents scandal is not a serious scandal. The botched withdrawal from Afghanistan is a serious scandal. Biden’s refusal to faithfully execute his duties as president of the United States by securing the southern border is a serious scandal. The Biden family pay-to-play escapades are a serious scandal. And the weaponization of the FBI and the intelligence community to interfere in the 2020 election and hand Biden the presidency is a serious scandal. This is not.

Laughable. Delicious. Outrageous. It is all those things and becomes more so by the day, with news that more classified documents are reposed in a residential garage, in addition to the closet at a D.C. think tank. And the story just becomes funnier the more the corrupt press tries to distinguish Biden’s possession of classified documents from Trump’s because Biden himself on video declared the possession of classified documents in Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home to be “just totally irresponsible.” 

But a garage, Joe? Seriously? And is not knowing there were classified documents there, as Biden claims, any better?

The bottom line here is simple. This entire scandal is a joke. And now, thanks to the get-Trump franchise, irresponsible Biden will be forever cast as a laughingstock — and so will the propagandists in the press. 


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

On Classified Documents, Joe Biden Is Out of Excuses


BY: DAVID HARSANYI | JANUARY 12, 2023

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2023/01/12/we-need-a-special-counsel-to-investigate-joe-bidens-classified-documents-case-pronto/

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The president’s entire narrative fell apart in only a week.

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DAVID HARSANYI

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Every president probably stashes away classified documents. The chances of any president being successfully prosecuted for pilfering them are infinitesimal. Nevertheless, now that we’ve learned Joe Biden has engaged in the same behavior as Donald Trump — perhaps worse, considering vice presidents are afforded less leeway on classified documents — precedent and transparency, our very democracy, demand Attorney General Merrick Garland name a special counsel to investigate (I get results!)

Right now, none of the rationalizations offered by the media for Biden’s actions over the past few days are operational. When the story first broke, outlets stressed that one of the vital “distinctions” between the two incidents was that Biden was in possession of fewer documents than Trump. Biden aides, we learned, had been utterly shocked to discover only a “small number” of classified documents “locked” in the personal offices of the president’s “think tank” — as if the location or the number of documents, or the alleged lock, rather than the contents, were the most newsworthy aspect of the story.

Today, we learned that a second “batch” of classified documents was uncovered at an “undisclosed” location. Suddenly, everything got incredibly vague. Biden aides, we are told, began diligently rummaging through boxes to ensure they were in complete compliance with the law. A completely independent source told collusion-hoaxer Ken Dilanian that the “search was described as exhaustive, with the goal of getting a full accounting of all classified documents that may have inadvertently been packed in boxes when Biden cleared out of the vice president’s office space in January 2017.” It’s heartening to know that the Bidens are such diligent, law-abiding folk.

Yesterday, we were told that classified documents that are found in a serious office setting, rather than just “lying around” in a home, was an important difference between the two cases. Today, Biden’s lawyer says that “small number” of classified documents was also found “locked” in Biden’s garage and an “adjacent” room of his Wilmington home. (Don’t worry, the president assures us it was safely stored next to his beloved Corvette.) You know, if we find another “small number” of documents, we might just have ourselves a full cache.

No doubt, journalists are super curious to know how those classified documents got into Joe’s garage. I mean, the guy had a think tank office at his disposal in D.C. Moreover, the initial documents were alleged to have been discovered before midterms, and yet we’re only hearing about new ones months later — and in convenient dribs and drabs.

Soon after CBS’s initial story, a four-byline puff piece from CNN reported that the documents found in the think tank were related to Ukraine, Iran, and the U.K., so not just keepsakes and letters and such. This week we also learned, in another soft-peddled report by The New York Times, that Biden, despite his insistence that he knew nothing about his son Hunter’s foreign entanglements, had met with a liaison from the Ukrainian energy interest Burisma, among many other revelations. Recall, Obama officials had also raised concerns about the Biden family business. Is there any chance those Ukrainian documents would have been embarrassing to the president? Seems a reasonable question.

What’s important now, we’re going to be instructed, is that Biden “immediately” contacted the authorities and is fully “cooperating.” Is it possible, and I’m just theorizing here, that Biden and his aides are lying? For one thing, cooperating is fine, but it’s not everything. Trump has every right to hire a lawyer and fight the Archives over documents. Maybe he’s got a case, maybe he doesn’t. But perhaps Biden also simply picked an opportune time to cooperate with his own administration in an effort to avoid any transparency. Far from “immediately” handing over this material, the president’s been in possession of classified documents for nearly seven years. How does the DOJ know there aren’t more documents stashed away? How does it know Biden, like Trump, didn’t put them in his garage on purpose? Because he says so?

Don’t get me wrong, it’s entertaining watching the comically obvious attempts to mitigate the damage. But if Biden hasn’t done anything wrong, he has absolutely nothing to fear.


David Harsanyi is a senior editor at The Federalist, a nationally syndicated columnist, a Happy Warrior columnist at National Review, and author of five books—the most recent, Eurotrash: Why America Must Reject the Failed Ideas of a Dying Continent. He has appeared on Fox News, C-SPAN, CNN, MSNBC, NPR, ABC World News Tonight, NBC Nightly News and radio talk shows across the country. Follow him on Twitter, @davidharsanyi.

GOP-Controlled House Makes Protecting Born Alive Babies, Condemning Violence Against Pro-Lifers Priority Number One


BY: JORDAN BOYD | JANUARY 11, 2023

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2023/01/11/gop-controlled-house-makes-protecting-born-alive-babies-condemning-violence-against-pro-lifers-priority-number-one/

newborn
House Republicans are committed to using their newfound majority to pass pro-life measures despite Democrat objections.

JORDAN BOYD

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While House Democrats’ first act of the 118th Congress was to demand a vote on their unsuccessful abortion up-until-birth in all 50 states legislation, House Republicans, keen to defend the nation’s most vulnerable, committed to using their newfound majority to pass two pro-life measures.

Neither of the legislative acts limits abortion in any way as the GOP’s previously proposed 15-week abortion ban would have done. Yet, Democrats and their allies in the corrupt corporate media, still reeling from the end of Roe v. Wadeshunned the legislation and smeared Republicans for daring to use their congressional power to curb Democrats’ abortion for all agenda.

House Republicans turn their attention to restricting abortion rights,” the Washington Post wrote.

Republican-controlled House pushes for new abortion restrictions,” the Guardian reported.

House Republicans Are Already Voting On Anti-Abortion Bills As GOP Eyes Even More Restrictions,” one Forbes headline blared.

The first, a bill dubbed the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, doesn’t just seek to mandate life-saving medical care and legal protection for babies who survive botched abortions. The legislation also criminalizes abortionists’ failure to administer proper care and treatment for infants who are born alive.

The GOP’s belief that “Every baby is a precious life that must be protected,” however, was not shared by their Democrat colleagues. Instead of agreeing with Republicans’ attempts to give newborns who survive abortions proper care, Democrats defended the gruesome act of dismembering a delivered baby. Despite claiming the bill is unwarranted because infanticide is illegal, talking heads and leftist mouthpieces smeared the legislation as “extremist, dangerous, and unnecessary” and committed to obeying Democrat leadership’s orders to vote against it.

The second GOP-led action is a resolution designed to condemn the more than 100 attacks, firebombings, and violent acts of vandalism that plagued pregnancy centers, churches, and other pro-life organizations following the Supreme Court’s Dobbs v. Jackson decision.

Additionally, the resolution urges the Biden administration, the FBI, Attorney General Merrick Garland, and the politicized Department of Justice, which focused on targeting peaceful pro-life protestors instead of violent pro-abortion vandalists, to “take action now to bring the perpetrators to justice.”

“Who could be opposed to that?” the resolution’s proponent Rep. Mike Johnson asked from the House floor on Wednesday.

Yet, Democrats were more than willing to brush off the history of political violence against pro-lifers in exchange for pushing more support for abortion.

Since the Supreme Court struck down Roe last summer, pro-life laws all around the nation have saved more than 10,000 lives. Despite House Republicans’ best efforts to pass pro-life legislation on the national level to expand life-saving measures, the Democrat-controlled Senate does not plan to advance the legislation.


Jordan Boyd is a staff writer at The Federalist and co-producer of The Federalist Radio Hour. Her work has also been featured in The Daily Wire and Fox News. Jordan graduated from Baylor University where she majored in political science and minored in journalism. Follow her on Twitter @jordanboydtx.

Today’s TWO Politically INCORRECT Cartoons by A.F. Branco


A.F. Branco Cartoon – Employee of the Month

A.F. BRANCO | on January 3, 2023 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-employee-of-the-month/

Biden endorses using child labor for mining cobalt in the Congo and Zambia to use in EV batteries.

Child Slave Labor
Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

A.F. Branco Cartoon – All Wired In

A.F. BRANCO | on January 2, 2023 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-all-wired-in/

It looks like the FBI and other deep-state organizations had a direct line to the Mainstream leftist media.

FBI TWitter Memos
Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2023

DONATE to A.F.Branco Cartoons – Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including NewsMax, Fox News, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Rep. Devin Nunes, Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Chris Salcedo, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

Ann Coulter Op-ed: Happy Kwanzaa! The Holiday Brought to You by the FBI


 December 28, 2022 by Ann Coulter

Read more at https://anncoulter.com/2022/12/28/happy-kwanzaa-the-holiday-brought-to-you-by-the-fbi-8/

Happy Kwanzaa! The Holiday Brought to You by the FBI

  It seems like all I hear these days is how liberals are red-hot for teaching history, while retrograde troglodytes on the right are demanding that we suppress the teaching of history by banning critical race theory (CRT). Haranguing students, day in day out, about their white privilege is just teaching history.

     On this beloved Kwanzaa week, here’s some history for you.

Celebrated exclusively by white liberals, Kwanzaa is a fake holiday invented in 1966 by black radical/FBI stooge Ron Karenga — aka Dr. Maulana Karenga, founder of United Slaves, the violent nationalist rival to the Black Panthers. Liberals have become so mesmerized by multicultural gibberish that they have forgotten the real history of Kwanzaa and Karenga’s United Slaves.

In what was ultimately a foolish gambit, during the madness of the ’60s, the FBI encouraged the most extreme black nationalist organizations in order to discredit and split the left. The more preposterous the group, the better. (It’s the same function Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez serves today.)

By that criterion, Karenga’s United Slaves was perfect.

Despite modern perceptions that blend all the black activists of the ’60s, the Black Panthers did not hate whites. Although some of their most high-profile leaders were drug dealers and murderers, they did not seek armed revolution.

No, those were the precepts of Karenga’s United Slaves. The United Slaves were proto-fascists, walking around in dashikis, gunning down Black Panthers and adopting invented “African” names. (I will not be shooting any Black Panthers this week because I am Kwanzaa-reform, and we are not that observant.)

It’s as if David Duke invented a holiday called “Anglika,” which he based on the philosophy of “Mein Kampf” — and clueless public schoolteachers began celebrating the made-up, racist holiday.

In the category of the-gentleman-doth-protest-too-much, back in the ’70s, Karenga was quick to criticize Nigerian newspapers that claimed that certain American black radicals were CIA operatives.

Now we know the truth: The FBI fueled the bloody rivalry between the Panthers and United Slaves. In the annals of the American ’60s, Karenga was the Father Gapon, stooge of the czarist police. Whether Karenga was a willing FBI dupe or just a dupe remains unclear.

In one barbarous outburst, Karenga’s United Slaves shot two Black Panthers to death on the UCLA campus: Al “Bunchy” Carter and John Huggins. Karenga himself served time, a useful stepping-stone for his current position as the chair of the Africana Studies Department at California State University at Long Beach.

The left has forgotten the FBI’s tacit encouragement of this murderous black nationalist cult founded by the father of Kwanzaa. The esteemed Cal State professor’s invented holiday is a nutty blend of schmaltzy ’60s rhetoric, black racism and Marxism. The seven principles of Kwanzaa are the very same seven principles of the Symbionese Liberation Army, another invention of The Worst Generation.

In 1974, Patty Hearst, kidnap victim-cum-SLA revolutionary, famously posed next to the banner of her alleged captors, a seven-headed cobra. Each snakehead stood for one of the SLA’s revolutionary principles: Umoja, Kujichagulia, Ujima, Ujamaa, Nia, Kuumba and Imani. These are the exact same seven “principles” of Kwanzaa.

When Karenga was asked to distinguish Kawaida, the philosophy underlying Kwanzaa, from “classical Marxism,” he essentially said that, under Kawaida, we also hate whites. (And here’s something interesting: Kawaida, Kwanzaa and Kuumba are also the only three Kardashian sisters not to have their own shows on the E! network.)

While taking the “best of early Chinese and Cuban socialism” (is that the mass murder or the seizure of private property?), Karenga said Kawaida practitioners believe one’s racial identity “determines life conditions, life chances and self-understanding.”

There’s an inclusive philosophy for you!

Sing to “Jingle Bells”:

Kwanzaa bells, dashikis sell

Whitey has to pay;

Burning, shooting, oh what fun

On this made-up holiday!

Kwanzaa emerged not from Africa, but from the FBI’s COINTELPRO. It is a holiday celebrated exclusively by idiot white liberals. Black Americans celebrate Christmas.

     COPYRIGHT 2022 ANN COULTER

FBI Office Investigating Hunter Biden Sent Twitter Numerous Censorship Requests Right Before 2020 Election


BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND | DECEMBER 27, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/12/27/fbi-office-investigating-hunter-biden-sent-twitter-numerous-censorship-requests-right-before-2020-election/

Hunter Biden in blue shirt sitting at a table for ABC News interview
When the bureau’s own former general counsel calls the FBI’s conduct ‘odd,’ it’s clear who’s discrediting the agency: It isn’t conspiracy theorists — it’s the FBI.

Author Margot Cleveland profile

MARGOT CLEVELAND

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Emails released on Saturday as part of the latest dump of the “Twitter Files” reveal that the week before the 2020 presidential election, the FBI field office investigating Hunter Biden sent multiple censorship requests to Twitter — so many in fact, a top attorney for the tech giant found it “odd.” This blockbuster detail from the weekend came mere days after the FBI issued a statement framing coverage of the “Twitter Files” as “misinformation” being peddled by “conspiracy theorists.”

The FBI has “some folks in the Baltimore field office and at HQ that are just doing keyword searches for violations,” then-Twitter legal executive Stacia Cardille stressed in a Nov. 3, 2020, email to Jim Baker, the then-deputy general counsel for Twitter. “This is probably the 10th request I have dealt with in the last 5 days,” Cardille continued, before telling Baker to let her know if he had any other questions.” 

Less than an hour later, Baker responded to Cardille, noting it was “odd” that the FBI is “searching for violations of our policies.” 

Independent journalist Matt Taibbi published these emails as part of a 50-something Christmas Eve “Twitter Files” thread that he remarked showed “the FBI acting as doorman to a vast program of social media surveillance and censorship, encompassing agencies across the federal government – from the State Department to the Pentagon to the CIA.”

The entire thread is newsworthy, but that FBI agents in both the Baltimore field office and at FBI headquarters were running keyword searches for supposed Twitter violations proves hugely significant because both offices were involved in the Hunter Biden investigation. 

While the Delaware U.S. Attorney’s Office is — and was at the time of the 2020 election — handling the investigation into Hunter Biden, reportedly for potential money laundering and tax crimes, there is no separate Delaware FBI field office. Rather, the Baltimore FBI field office covers all of Delaware for the bureau and thus supported (and continues to support) the Delaware U.S. Attorney’s Office in its investigation of Hunter Biden. 

We also know from multiple FBI whistleblowers that FBI headquarters entangled itself in the Hunter Biden probe: In July 2022, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, announced that “multiple FBI whistleblowers, including those in senior positions,” had claimed that “in August of 2020, FBI supervisory intelligence analyst Brian Auten opened an assessment, which was used by a team of agents at FBI headquarters to improperly discredit and falsely claim that derogatory information about Biden’s activities was disinformation, causing investigative activity and sourcing to be shut down.

“The FBI headquarters team allegedly placed their assessment findings in a restricted access subfolder, effectively flagging sources and derogatory evidence related to Hunter Biden as disinformation while shielding the justification for such findings from scrutiny,” according to Grassley.

Given the involvement of both Baltimore FBI and FBI headquarters in the investigation of Hunter Biden — and the latter’s attempt to shut down the probe — the revelation that “some folks in the Baltimore field office and at HQ” were “doing keyword searches for violations,” suggests the FBI undertook a full-court press to interfere in the 2020 election.

Previously released “Twitter Files” and statements from Twitter and Facebook established the FBI lied to the tech giants, representing the Hunter Biden laptop story as Russian disinformation and prompting the censorship of the Biden-family scandal mere weeks before the 2020 election. Internal Twitter communications also revealed that the night before the New York Post published emails from Hunter Biden’s abandoned laptop that implicated Joe Biden in a pay-to-play scandal, “the FBI used a private communications channel to send 10 documents to a top Twitter executive.” 

The “Twitter Files” also exposed “Twitter’s contact with the FBI was constant and pervasive, as if it were a subsidiary of the FBI,” as Taibbi explained in an earlier thread. The “Twitter Files” Taibbi previously reported showed that from “January 2020 to November 2022, there were over 150 emails between the FBI and former Twitter Trust and Safety Chief Yoel Roth.” Those communications indicated “agencies like the FBI and DHS regularly sending social media content to Twitter through multiple entry points, pre-flagged for moderation.

These earlier threads, however, all focused on either communications coming from the San Francisco FBI field office or discussed the monthly and then weekly meetings between Twitter and the federal government’s Foreign Influence Task Force, or FITF. As Taibbi noted, the FBI greatly expanded the number of agents assigned to the FITF following the 2016 election, with the task force swelling to 80 agents.”

With FBI San Francisco and the FITF already liaisoning with Twitter, why then would the Baltimore field office and FBI headquarters have any involvement in communicating with Twitter? And as Saturday’s emails reveal, those officers were not merely passing on information they received, they were, according to a Twitter legal executive, running “keyword” searches — something even Baker, who was previously general counsel for the FBI, found “odd.” 

And the Baltimore field office and FBI headquarters conducted these “keyword” searches and shared the results with Twitter for one reason only: to prompt Twitter to censor the speech the week before the 2020 presidential election. 

“Odd” doesn’t even begin to capture the situation — which, given the connection between those two FBI offices and the Hunter Biden investigation, suggests a new wing to the Big Tech scandal: one in which FBI agents proactively sought out people and speech to censor for the benefit their politician of choice.

Ironically, the Wednesday before Taibbi broke this latest news, the FBI issued a statement claiming that “the correspondence between the FBI and Twitter show nothing more than examples of our traditional, longstanding and ongoing federal government and private sector engagements, which involve numerous companies over multiple sectors and industries. … It is unfortunate that conspiracy theorists and others are feeding the American public misinformation with the sole purpose of attempting to discredit the agency.”

When the bureau’s own former general counsel calls the FBI’s conduct “odd,” it’s pretty clear who is discrediting the agency: It isn’t conspiracy theorists — it’s the FBI.


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

Today’s TWO Politically INCORRECT Cartoons by A.F. Branco


A.F. Branco Cartoon – Twitter Claus

A.F. BRANCO | on December 22, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-twitter-claus/

Old Saint Twit, Elon Musk, comes bearing gifts, Free Speech, and government corruption exposed.

Twiter Christmas
Political cartoon A.F. Branco ©2022.

A.F. Branco Cartoon – Merry Porkulus

A.F. BRANCO | on December 22, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-merry-porkulus/

Democrats and RINO Republicans are pushing a $1.7 Trillion Omnibus bill that spends $47 Billion for Ukraine and $410 Million for Border security in the Middle East but nothing for our southern border.

Omnius Bill 2022
Political cartoon by A.F. Branco.

DONATE to A.F.Branco Cartoons – Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including NewsMax, Fox News, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Rep. Devin Nunes, Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Chris Salcedo, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

Nearly 30 Pro-Abortion Attacks Against Churches Have Occurred Since SCOTUS Overturned Roe V. Wade, Report Shows


By: KATE ANDERSON, CONTRIBUTOR | December 20, 2022

Read more at https://www.conservativereview.com/nearly-30-pro-abortion-attacks-against-churches-have-occurred-since-scotus-overturned-roe-v-wade-report-shows-2658991072.html/

TO GO WITH AFP STORY IN FRENCH BY FRANCO
ALAIN JOCARD/AFP via Getty Images
  • Nearly 30 incidents of abortion-related attacks toward churches happened directly following the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, according to a report by the Family Research Council (FRC). 
  • Between January 2018 and September 2022, 420 anti-Christian incidents were reported by 397 churches across 45 states, including “vandalism, arson, gun-related incidents, bomb threats, and more,” according to FRC. 
  • Arielle Del Turco, the author of the report, told the Daily Caller News Foundation she believes the report barely “scratches the surface.”

Dozens of U.S. churches have been targets of pro-abortion “hostility” since the Supreme Court overturned the landmark Roe v. Wade ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, a Family Research Council (FRC) report found.

On June 24, the Supreme Court overturned the ruling, causing an uproar among pro-abortion supporters. Nearly 30 attacks on churches were reported after the Dobbs decision that had explicit pro-abortion rhetoric, according to the report(RELATED: Pro-Lifers Still Hearing Crickets From FBI After Being Firebombed) 

“When the U.S. Supreme Court’s draft decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization was leaked on May 2, 2022, churches saw a spike in graffiti incidents with pro-abortion messages and protests that interrupted church services,” the report stated. “This trend has continued since the Dobbs decision was officially handed down and Roe v. Wade was overturned on June 24, 2022.”

FRC, a “nonprofit research and education organization,” released its report last week after looking into hostility against churches over a five-year period from 2018 to 2022. In 2022 alone, churches experienced 57 incidents of “hostility.” From 2019 to 2021 only five similar incidences involving pro-abortion rhetoric were reported, indicating a sharp increase over the last year likely related to the overturn of Roe, according to FRC.

Arielle Del Turco, the author of the report, told the Daily Caller News Foundation that she felt there is a “disturbing trend” of increased incidents during times of “heightened political tension” like the Dobbs decision. Over all five years, 420 incidents were reported by 397 churches in 45 states, including Washington, D.C., such as “vandalism, arson, gun-related incidents, bomb threats, and more,” according to the report. The report noted that the level of hostility also increased over time. Not all of the reported incidents were tied directly to pro-abortion rhetoric. In that same period, California, Texas, New York and Florida had the most amount of incidents with California ranking number one with 51, according to the report. Vandalism made up 77% of the incidents with arson coming in second at 13%.

Del Turco also said she believes the report barely “scratches the surface.”

“There are any number of reasons that churches would have been vandalized or attacked and we wouldn’t have heard about them either because the church isn’t alerting news outlets or we’ve heard of churches that it happens to all the time so they are going on their fifteenth, sixteenth time its happened and they are just not reporting it every time,” Del Turco explained.

NEW YORK, NY – MAY 07: Abortion-rights activists gather outside of a Catholic church in downtown Manhattan to voice their support for a woman’s right to choose on May 07, 2022, in New York City. The protests at the Basilica of St. Patricks Old Cathedral, which have been occurring weekly and where a small number of anti-abortion activists worship, have been given added urgency by the recent leaked Supreme Court ruling on Roe v. Wade. (Photo by Stephanie Keith/Getty Images)

“Criminal acts of vandalism and destruction of church property are likely symptomatic of a collapse in societal reverence and respect for houses of worship and religion — in this case, churches and Christianity,” FRC stated in the report. “Americans appear increasingly comfortable lashing out against church buildings, pointing to a larger societal problem of marginalizing core Christian beliefs, including those that touch on hot-button political issues related to human dignity and sexuality.”

FRC also noted the increase in reported hate crimes against Christians in the same period.

The FBI’s annual statistics showed hate crimes against Christians went up steadily from 2019 to 2021 with a small dip in 2020 likely due to lockdowns from COVID-19, according to an FRC analysis.

“In 2021, the most recent year with available data, the FBI reported 240 anti-Christian ‘hate crimes,’” FRC stated. “This was up from 213 anti-Christian incidents in 2020 … the FBI reported 217 anti-Christian incidents in 2019 and 172 in 2018.”

Del Turco said the increasing anger towards Christians shows a concerning trend of hostility toward religious institutions and that Americans need to “resolutely condemn.”

“Churches are just bearing the brunt of this political anger, however, the fact that they attack churches and not any other type of institution you could think of, I think it says something,” Turco concluded. “To me it indicates a hostility to Christianity generally and so when something flares up in the news that they are particularly angry about churches are then blamed.”

Latest ‘Twitter Files’ Bombshell Shows FBI Neck-Deep In Russian Disinformation Lie To Kill Hunter Biden Laptop Story


BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND | DECEMBER 20, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/12/20/latest-twitter-files-bombshell-shows-fbi-neck-deep-in-russian-disinformation-lie-to-kill-hunter-biden-laptop-story/

Hunter Biden in interview
New materials released Monday as part of the ‘Twitter Files’ suggest the FBI was extensively involved in crafting the Russian disinformation narrative to kill the Hunter Biden laptop story.

Author Margot Cleveland profile

MARGOT CLEVELAND

VISIT ON TWITTER@PROFMJCLEVELAND

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The night before the New York Post published emails recovered from an abandoned Hunter Biden laptop that established Joe Biden’s connections with his son’s business dealings, the FBI used a private communications channel to send 10 documents to a top Twitter executive. While those documents and others remain cloistered at Twitter headquarters — likely because they are designated as classified — additional materials released Monday as part of the “Twitter Files,” part seven, suggest the FBI was extensively involved in crafting the Russian disinformation narrative to kill the Hunter Biden laptop story.

The Latest

“Heads up,” FBI Special Agent Elvis Chan opened an Oct. 13, 2020 late-evening email to Yoel Roth, the then-head of site integrity for Twitter. Chan’s email alerted him to a “Teleporter link” that would allow Roth to download 10 documents. “It is not spam!” Chan stressed, asking Roth to confirm receipt of the link. Two minutes later, at 6:24 p.m., California time, Roth acknowledged he had received the message and downloaded the files.

Chan’s Oct. 13, 2020, email was one of several internal communications published Monday by Michael Shellenberger in his thread on part seven of the “Twitter Files.” While the email contained no further details about the content of the 10 documents provided to the top Twitter executive, that Chan sent the email the evening before the New York Post’s story on the Hunter Biden laptop hit and mere hours after a lawyer for the Biden son had contacted John Paul Mac Isaac, the owner of the computer repair store where Hunter had abandoned his laptop, proves suggestive.

That the email came after normal business hours, via the private one-way communications channel used by the FBI, and included an alert to Roth to watch for the communication all also indicate that the message and the attached 10 documents concerned a matter of urgency. And what could be more urgent than the laptop October surprise?

By 9-something in the morning of Oct. 14, 2020, Jim Baker, the now-former deputy general counsel of Twitter, had already “seen some reliable cybersecurity folks question the authenticity of the emails,” as he told Roth and 11 other colleagues in an email. “The formatting looks like they could be complete fabrications,” Baker explained. Another email also showed Baker had arranged a phone conversation with Matthew Perry in the FBI’s Office of General Counsel for that same day.

For his part, by 10:00 a.m., Roth wrote some 15-plus colleagues that they had decided to block the Post’s Hunter Biden story as hacked material, explaining that a “key factor informing our approach is consensus from experts monitoring election security and disinformation that this looks a lot like a hack-and-leak that learned from the 2016 Wikileaks approach and our policy changes.

The suggestion from experts — which rings true,” Roth continued, “is there was a hack that happened separately, and they loaded the hacked materials on the laptop that magically appeared at a repair shop in Delaware (and was coincidentally reviewed in a very invasive way by someone who coincidentally then handed the materials to Rudy Giuliani).” 

Those “reliable cybersecurity folks” and “experts monitoring election security and disinformation,” of which Baker and Roth spoke, might not have been connected to the FBI, or the documents Chan sent the prior evening. But if they are, which seems possible — if not likely — the evidence implicating the FBI in lying to interfere in the 2020 election just multiplied exponentially.

Prior to Monday’s “Twitter Files” dump, Roth acknowledged in a statement to the Federal Election Commission that “since 2018 he had regular meetings with the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI, and industry peers regarding election security.” “During these weekly meetings, the federal law enforcement agencies communicated that they expected ‘hack-and-leak operations’ by state actors might occur in the period shortly before the 2020 presidential election, likely in October,” Roth said. Roth further explained that from those meetings he learned “that there were rumors that a hack-and-leak operation would involve Hunter Biden.”

Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg likewise confirmed during an interview with Joe Rogan that the tech giant’s decision to censor the Hunter Biden story stemmed from the FBI basically telling his team, “Hey, just so you know, you should be on high alert.” “[W]e thought there was a lot of Russian propaganda in the 2016 election” Zuckerberg recalled the FBI warning his tech company, adding that the agency told them, “We have it on notice that basically there’s about to be some kind of dump similar to that so just be vigilant.

So, when the New York Post broke the Hunter Biden laptop story on Oct. 14, 2020,” Zuckerberg noted, “Facebook treated the story as potentially misinformation, important misinformation for five to seven days while the tech giant’s team could determine whether it was false.

Of course, the Hunter Biden laptop story was not false and was not part of a “hack-and-leak” operation, and the FBI knew it, having seized the laptop from Mac Isaac in December of 2019. Thus, these statements from Roth and Zuckerberg establish the FBI lied to the tech giants, prompting them to censor the New York Post’s reporting and thereby interfere in the election.

Roth and Zuckerberg’s statements should be enough to cement the FBI’s peddling of false intel to interfere in a presidential election as one of our nation’s worst political scandals. But if the FBI’s Oct. 13, 2020 Teleporter message and documents provide further concrete evidence that the FBI fed Twitter the opinion of supposed experts that the laptop was hacked or fake, it will be difficult for even the propaganda press to keep ignoring the story.

It’s Classified

Unfortunately, Shellenberger references neither the underlying Teleporter message from Oct. 13, 2020, nor the content of the 10 documents. Matt Taibbi — who in his coverage of part six of the “Twitter Files” on Friday also referenced a Chan email from Oct. 16, 2020, directing two high-level Twitter executives to monitor their Teleporter messages for two important documents — likewise did not make any mention of the content of the Teleporter message or the two important documents attached. Why is that?

Another email released in Shellenberger’s thread on Monday provides a clue. 

On July 15, 2020, Chan wrote to Roth and another individual at Twitter whose identity was redacted. In that email, Chan proposed “30 days out from the election,” providing Twitter temporary clearances, with Roth and his colleague picking who would receive clearances. And by Sept. 15, 2020, the FBI was adamant that “no impediments to information sharing exist,” including of classified information. 

Given that Taibbi and Shellenberger make no mention of the content of the Teleporter messages and attachments and given that Teleporter served as a one-way communications system from the FBI, it seems likely the FBI used Teleporter to transmit classified materials to the select Twitter employees provided temporary security clearance. That possibility would also account for the cryptic way Baker and Roth describe the supposed experts’ view of the authenticity of the Hunter Biden laptop to other Twitter employees who likely lacked clearance. 

So, once again, it appears the FBI will hide behind classification markings, just as it did to mask its malfeasance in obtaining four FISA surveillance warrants for Carter Page. But Republicans now hold the majority in the House, meaning there is a chance for the country to learn what Elon Musk can’t tell us. 


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

Are FBI And CIA Agents ‘Sheep Dipped’ At Twitter and Other Tech Companies?


BY: MARK HEMINGWAY | DECEMBER 20, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/12/20/are-fbi-and-cia-agents-sheep-dipped-at-twitter-and-other-tech-companies/

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That so few people are curious about the nexus between intel agencies and Big Tech should be a national scandal.

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According to the latest drop of “Twitter Files” from Michael Shellenberger, “As of 2020, there were so many former FBI employees — ‘Bu alumni’ — working at Twitter that they had created their own private Slack channel and a crib sheet to onboard new FBI arrivals.” It appears that Twitter still has 14 employees on the payroll who worked at the FBI and CIA.

The problem isn’t just confined to Twitter. My colleague and Federalist contributor Ben Weingarten recently wrote an article for the New York Post, “Inside revolving door between Democrat Deep State and Big Tech.”

In addition to covering what was happening at Twitter, Weingarten details a broader number of suspicious links between Silicon Valley and U.S. intelligence agencies. Given the near-constant string of deep-state scandals and social media censorship we’ve endured in recent years, a big question we should all be trying to answer right now is, “What exactly are all these spooks doing at tech companies?”

So far, the answer appears to be: “They’re almost certainly up to no good.” After the first batch of “Twitter Files” dropped, it was revealed that Elon Musk fired Twitter Deputy General Counsel James Baker. Prior to going to work at Twitter, Baker was a top lawyer at the FBI from 2014 to 2017. In that capacity, he played a significant role in shepherding FBI’s baseless and illegal Russiagate investigation.

In fact, it’s probably safe to assume one of the reasons Baker exited the FBI was to dodge any accountability for the FBI’s reckless and politically motivated attempt to investigate the president of the United States. Twitter was a pretty soft landing.

Or at least it was, until it was revealed that Baker, who was still employed at Twitter as of a few weeks ago, got fired after he intercepted the internal company communications Musk was giving to journalists Matt Taibbi and Bari Weiss to expose the censorship and misdeeds of the company’s previous management. Nobody has quite figured out what he was doing, but there’s widespread speculation Baker may have removed Twitter communications with the FBI or other damning info before it could become public.

Yes, large global corporations need high-level, discreet corporate security, and potentially for benign purposes the particular skillsets that former law enforcement and intelligence personnel provide. However, the situation with Baker makes the problem plenty obvious. If you’re inclined to automatically trust the professionalism and integrity of the FBI and CIA, please have your head examined.

I want to know how many of these FBI and CIA agents are “sheep dipped.” In the intelligence world, “sheep dipping” is a term of art. It describes a tactic whereby a member of the military is “officially discharged from service” to do covert work. In secret, they are still eligible for rank promotions and military benefits.

I first learned the term from my father, because he was “sheep dipped.” He worked for the CIA in Laos in the early 1960s lead-up to the Vietnam War. He was a young Marine officer. During his year in Laos, his normal service records were replaced with records saying he was separated from the Marine Corps, to allow the government to deny any responsibility if anything happened to him. When he returned from Laos, they swapped out the files saying he’d left the Marine Corps with his regular service record, all as if nothing unusual had happened.

Suffice it to say, during this episode, dad witnessed the CIA’s involvement in drug smuggling and other unsavory behavior. The whole episode left a very bad taste in his mouth.

Fun fact I learned earlier this year: The man in charge of CIA operations in Laos when my father was there was the legendary spymaster Ray Cline. One Kennedy assassination conspiracy theory relates that Lee Harvey Oswald, who was still serving in the Marines when he briefly defected to the Soviet Union, didn’t really defect. He was sheep dipped and working for the CIA on an intelligence-gathering mission inside the Soviet Union.

The whole crazy escapade, according to the tale, was possibly organized by Cline, the local CIA station chief at the same time and place as one of Oswald’s previous overseas deployments. For what it’s worth, Cline also happens to be the former father-in-law of Stefan Halper, the dubious paid informant who was the FBI’s source for much of their bogus Trump-Russia investigation.

In case, you’re keeping track, why yes, I did just draw a line, albeit not a particularly straight one, that connects the Kennedy assassination and the Russiagate scandal. (It would have been too digressive to mention Cline and Halper’s connections to Watergate and Iran Contra, but I think you get the drift.)

Now, as clarification, I should say that “sheep dipping” seems to apply mostly to the intel community’s use of military personnel and isn’t necessarily an all-purpose phrase for CIA or FBI undercover work. One of the most annoying things about being subjected to years of completely credulous Russiagate and Steele dossier coverage was every pundit suddenly becoming an armchair expert on espionage and throwing around phrases such as “SIGINT” when we all know they just learned what signals intelligence was 15 minutes ago.

But the point here isn’t to offer up conspiracies about the Kennedy assassination. It’s to make the point that one reason conspiracy theories are so easy to believe is that it’s well-known the Deep-State Industrial Complex employs a lot of tactics such as sheep dipping that are expressly about manipulation and deception.

Combined with so many official denials over the years that turned out to be lies, this makes it impossible to believe intel agencies when they say they aren’t doing something. It was very much denied that American soldiers were in Southeast Asia when my dad was in the jungle learning how to eat soup with chopsticks. More recently, we have very dishonest denials about domestic spying by Obama intelligence officials John Brennan and James Clapper that in a just society should have led to criminal charges.

The FBI response to “Twitter Files” revelations that they were working behind the scenes with the social media network and encouraging censorship is about the furthest thing from reassuring. “The FBI regularly engages with private sector entities to provide information specific to identified foreign malign influence actors’ subversive, undeclared, covert, or criminal activities,” an FBI spokesman told journalist Jon Nicosia. “Private sector entities independently make decisions about what, if any, action they take on their platforms and for their customers after the FBI has notified them.”

Based on what we know, there’s absolutely no reason not to assume that, of the numerous former FBI and CIA employees at Twitter, some weren’t either informally or directly working for intel agencies. Further, it is incredibly alarming that the watchdogs that are supposed to protect us from rogue government agencies eroding our rights can’t be bothered to investigate this.

For most of my life, the corporate media, and the activist left in particular, treated these agencies with extreme skepticism. Revelations such as these would formerly have set off klaxons in newsrooms. But now? “People’s brains are so drowning in partisan muck that the Bernie/AOC left — which still pretends to find the CIA and FBI nefarious if you force them to take a stance — refuses to care about the grave dangers in what [Matt Taibbi] reported about FBI’s role [at Twitter],” says Glenn Greenwald. Worse, Greenwald observes that their shared partisan obsessions mean that the left has completely surrendered to the corporatist imperatives of liberal institutions such as the media. “The only real enemies they see are the Trump movement and GOP. That’s why I use ‘left-liberal’: their core worldviews have merged,” he further observes.

With the exception of an under-resourced conservative media and a few independent lefty journalists such as Taibbi and Greenwald — who have dared to stay true to ideals that most of the journalists now trying to discredit them claimed to hold six years ago — no one is interested in solid evidence suggesting intel agencies have been secretly curbing Americans’ First Amendment rights, and possibly doing so to explicitly influence elections.

The fact that so few people are curious about the nexus between intel agencies and Big Tech, even when the evidence is staring them in the face, should be a national scandal. Americans deserve to know the truth about whether our intel agencies are being used against citizens. We should be concerned that the full extent of what they’ve done — and what they likely continue to do — to us will never be known.


Mark Hemingway is the Book Editor at The Federalist, and was formerly a senior writer at The Weekly Standard. Follow him on Twitter at @heminator

Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


A.F. Branco Cartoon – Breach

A.F. BRANCO | on December 20, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-breach/

Elon Musk exposed Twitter files reveal the FBI breached the 1st Amendment by pushing censorship on conservatives and interfering with the election.

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Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

DONATE to A.F.Branco Cartoons – Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including NewsMax, Fox News, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Rep. Devin Nunes, Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Chris Salcedo, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

6 Huge Takeaways from the Sixth Dump Of ‘Twitter Files’


BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND | DECEMBER 19, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/12/19/6-huge-takeaways-from-the-sixth-dump-of-twitter-files/

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While the ‘Twitter Files’ confirm many previously known facts and reveal some new details, they also raise more questions. 

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Part 6 of the “Twitter Files” broke late Friday when independent journalist Matt Taibbi published a 40-something-tweet thread titled: “TWITTER, THE FBI SUBSIDIARY.” Here are six highlights from the latest drop of internal communications bandied back and forth between Twitter executives and government officials.

1. The FBI Was the Hand in Twitter’s Glove

Twitter’s contact with the FBI was constant and pervasive, as if it were a subsidiary of the FBI,” Taibbi opened his “Twitter Files” thread from Friday. Then over the course of some 45 tweets, Taibbi provided proof from internal communications of the tech giant to support his claim and what Taibbi dubbed both the “master-canine quality of the FBI’s relationship to Twitter” and a “unique one-big-happy-family vibe” between Twitter and the FBI.

For instance, the “Twitter Files” revealed that from “January 2020 to November 2022, there were over 150 emails between the FBI and former Twitter Trust and Safety Chief Yoel Roth.” And the emails and other communications showed “agencies like the FBI and DHS regularly sending social media content to Twitter through multiple entry points, pre-flagged for moderation.” “What stands out,” Taibbi stressed, “is the sheer quantity of reports from the government.

Twitter’s relationship was not limited to the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security, nor were communications limited to emails, Friday’s installment of the “Twitter Files” revealed. A Sept. 15, 2020 email from a then-legal executive at Twitter, Stacia Cardille, to Jim Baker, who served at the time as deputy general counsel, confirmed these points. The email, titled “Elections Work,” summarized Cardille’s elections-related work and opened by discussing “Government-Industry Sync.” 

I participated in our monthly (soon to be weekly) 90-minute meeting with FBI, DOJ, DHS, ODNI, and industry peers on election threats.” Cardille then noted several items of import — more on those later. Key here, however, is the revelation that Twitter and “industry peers” had monthly and “soon to be weekly” meetings with the “FBI, DOJ, DHS, and ODNI,” or Office of the Director of National Intelligence, showing Twitter was not the only tech company groomed by the feds to spy on and censor Americans, and that it wasn’t merely the FBI involved.

So maybe “hands-in-gloves” is a more apt descriptor.

2. Bloated FBI Task Force Pushed for Silly Censorship

While Cardille’s email to Baker cast Twitter’s relationship with the FBI and other federal organizations as related to “election threats,” the emails exchanged between the feds and Twitter reveal the government regularly pushed Twitter to target select accounts for posts far removed from any semblance of an election threat. Or, as Taibbi reported, “a surprisingly high number are requests by the FBI for Twitter to take action on election misinformation, even involving joke tweets from low-follower accounts.

For instance, in one Nov. 10, 2022 email, “Fred” wrote, “Hello Twitter contacts,” “FBI San Francisco is notifying you of the below accounts which may potentially constitute violations of Twitter’s Terms of Service for any action or inaction deemed appropriate within Twitter policy.” Four Twitter account names followed, which were all suspended, including “one account whose tweets are almost all jokes,” but the latest of which Twitter considered “civic misinformation.” 

Taibbi provided several more examples of the FBI alerting Twitter to accounts that the FBI believed were violating Twitter’s terms of service. Taibbi then provided screen grabs of the offensive accounts while stating that “many of the above accounts were satirical in nature,” and nearly all were “relatively low engagement.”

The FBI’s targeting of such “low engagement” accounts seems strange until you realized the FBI greatly expanded the number of agents assigned to its “social media-focused task force, known as FTIF,” created following the 2016 election. The task force “swelled to 80 agents,” Taibbi noted, before making a profound point: “The ubiquity of the 2016 Russian interference story as stated pretext for building out the censorship machine can’t be overstated. It’s analogous to how 9/11 inspired the expansion of the security state.”

3. Feds Thread the Constitutional Needle — or Try To

While Friday’s drop of the “Twitter Files” revealed the FBI and other federal agencies pushing Twitter to censor users, and Twitter acted as if the “ask” was a “tell,” the communications also show that the agents carefully crafted their requests to avoid triggering the Constitution. 

Here it is necessary to understand the current state of First Amendment jurisprudence, which holds that when the government seeks the private censorship of speech, “what matters is the distinction between attempts to convince and attempts to coerce,” and “a public-official defendant who threatens to employ coercive state power to stifle protected speech violates a plaintiff’s First Amendment rights.” Conversely, a mere request does not trigger the Constitution.

Notice, then, the care the FBI used in its communications with Twitter: The FBI focused not on the government’s interest in censoring the speech, but on the Twitter accounts the FBI said it believed were “violating your terms of service.” The agents used the same or similar boilerplate language in the emails Taibbi published on Friday. Those same emails also ended with the caveat that the information provided by the FBI is “for any action or inaction deem[ed] appropriate within Twitter policy.” 

An email from the FBI’s National Election Command Post to the San Francisco field office also parrots the key language necessary to avoid triggering the Constitution. Specifically, the FBI’s national election group asked the San Francisco field office to assist in coordinating efforts with Twitter to obtain “any location information associated with the accounts that Twitter will voluntarily provide to aid the FBI in assigning any follow-up deemed necessary to the appropriate FBI field office.” The same email makes clear the FBI would use the necessary “legal process” to obtain access to account-holders’ information.

For all the screaming about the First Amendment, then, and the declaration by many that the “Twitter Files” prove the FBI violated Americans’ constitutional rights by seeking the censorship of speech, these exchanges show the FBI attempting to thread the needle to avoid making Twitter a state actor. 

Whether the FBI and Twitter succeeded in these efforts, however, remains to be seen because, as one of the country’s most preeminent First Amendment scholars Eugene Volokh explained in his essay “When Government Urges Private Entities to Restrict Others’ Speech,” there may be “room for courts to shift to a model where the government’s mere encouragement of private speech restrictions is enough to constitute a First Amendment violation on the government’s part.”

4. Are Feds Playing Fast and Loose with Classified Info? 

The FBI’s efforts to maintain separation between itself and Twitter to avoid triggering the Constitution apparently didn’t prevent the federal government from sharing classified information. The Sept. 15, 2020 email from Cardille to Baker revealed this concerning detail.

“I explicitly asked if there were any impediments with the ability of the government to share classified information or other relevant information with industry,” Cardille wrote about her most recent “monthly (soon to be weekly) 90-minute meeting with FBI, DOJ, DHS, ODNI, and industry peers on election threads.” The “FBI was adamant that no impediments to information sharing exist,” Cardille told Twitter’s then-deputy general counsel.

How could that be? Do the FBI and other intelligence agencies ignore classification designations when working with the tech industry? Or is the supposed intel the FBI is feeding to the social media giants with the goal of censoring private speech so mundane it isn’t classified? Both scenarios are troubling, just for different reasons.

5. The FBI Outsources Its ‘Misinformation’ Flagging

Another important revelation from part six of the “Twitter Files,” Taibbi concisely punctuated thusly: “What most people think of as the ‘deep state’ is really a tangled collaboration of state agencies, private contractors, and (sometimes state-funded) NGOs. The lines become so blurred as to be meaningless.” 

This conclusion followed from Taibbi’s review of communications received by Twitter via its “Partner Support Portal,” which the Center for Internet Security created. The Center for Internet Security, according to Taibbi’s reporting, is a non-governmental organization that serves as a DHS contractor. The Center for Internet Security “describes itself as ‘partners’ with the Cyber and Internet Security Agency (CISA) at the DHS.”

When the Center for Internet Security receives complaints related to supposed election “misinformation,” it says it will “forward it to our partners,” which in addition to the DHS’s Cyber and Infrastructure Security Agency, includes the “Election Integrity Partnership at Stanford University.” In turn, according to the “Twitter Files,” the Stanford University project will report “misinformation” to Twitter. 

Taibbi provided an example in which Stanford flagged as misinformation a video it called “legal-heavy.” Then to support the idea that the video represented misinformation, the Center for Internet Security’s analysis of the legal issues was quoted at length. What was unclear from the exchange, however, was whether the Center for Internet Security accurately represented the content of the video or properly analyzed the law, as well as whether the video included other accurate points. 

That Twitter would be willing to censor someone’s “legally heavy speech,” based on the say-so of various private third parties, may not implicate the First Amendment, but it is a dangerous squelching of free speech that prevents the public from learning and assessing conflicting viewpoints. 

6. Some Very Suspicious Timing

A final and more isolated point from Friday’s Twitter dump concerns an email Taibbi highlighted because it showed the multiple channels Twitter and the FBI used to communicate. In the email Taibbi highlighted, San Francisco Special Agent Elvis Chan wrote to Roth and Cardille to “be on the lookout for a Teleporter message from me with two documents to download.” But that email is suggestive beyond the relevance noted because of the date and the suggestion that the message is significant.

Chan’s email to the high-level Twitter executives was dated Oct. 16, 2020, and began, “Twitter folks, I just got something hot off the presses today” — something apparently so important that Chan directed Roth and Cardille to monitor their Teleporter messages. 

Now what could those two documents “hot off the presses” concern? Well, the FBI agent’s email to the Twitter executives came a mere two days after the New York Post broke the Hunter Biden laptop story on Oct. 14, 2020, raising real suspicions that the two documents related to that scandal. 

And so, while the “Twitter Files” confirm many previously known facts and reveal some new details, they also raise more questions. 


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

The Twitter Files Illustrate How Intelligence Agencies Can Rig Politics


BY: JOY PULLMANN | DECEMBER 14, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/12/14/the-twitter-files-illustrate-how-intelligence-agencies-can-rig-politics/

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Perhaps the most important outcome of these releases is the broadening recognition that Twitter, Facebook, Google, et al., are part of government propaganda operations.

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It’s not clear whether Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter is hostile.

Musk could be motivated by deeply personal reasons to battle Big Tech’s enforcement of Marxist identity politics. Or he could be attempting to do damage control for the regime by duping people who have reason to distrust the regime into believing Twitter is now more trustworthy. There are many other possibilities, too, and it’s impossible for outsiders to know which is true.

After all, the Twitter Files haven’t so far released that much new information. We already knew Big Tech was colluding with federal officials to deny Americans free speech and therefore self-government. We already knew the internet’s dominant infrastructure is completely rigged. We already knew Donald Trump’s Twitter defenestration was based on Twitter employees’ personal animus against him, not any objective reading of company policy.

We already knew Joe Biden is likely owned by foreign oligarchs who pay his son Hunter for access and influence, and that the Hunter Biden laptop story’s suppression was a deep state influence operation that tipped the 2020 election.

Whatever is going on behind the release of the Twitter Files, good things can come of it. This wormhole likely goes very deep, and even what we’re seeing now, quite close to the surface, is alarming and indicative enough. Perhaps the most important outcome of these releases is the broadening recognition that Twitter, Facebook, Google, et al., are part of government propaganda operations.

This is very likely why we’ve been hearing increasing alarms about “protecting democracy.” The existence and prevalence of this chant online is itself a strong indicator that democracy, or the concept of self-rule through free and fair elections, as the basic bloke thinks of it, doesn’t really exist anymore. At least, that’s certainly the case if Big Tech, in collusion with unelected officials who are almost as far-left as Twitter’s employees, selects what information voters may receive.

This Twitter-capade reveals further details about Big Tech’s function as an arm of U.S. “national security” and “intelligence” agencies. Decades ago, these agencies started going rogue on the formerly inalienable constitutional rights of American citizens, with tacit acquiescence from Congress through repeat authorizations and increased funding. These agencies and the entities they’ve colonized now treat the American people like occupied foreign territory, subject to psychological manipulation and institutional infiltration in a manner reminiscent of the Chinese Communist Party.

In fact, this whole affair emits more than merely a whiff of totalitarian collectivism, both communist and fascist. For one thing, the Twitter Files details about the revolving door between U.S. intelligence agency employees and Twitter — and surely also Google and Facebook — recall that Germany’s infamous National Socialists embedded party operatives on “private” company boards. So does today’s Chinese Communist Party.

One must also consider the possibility, if not absolute likelihood, that many of these “former” U.S. military and intelligence agents working at Twitter and Co. are not actually former, but covert government agents. I hear the practice is called “sheep dipping.” Former Twitter Deputy General Counsel Jim Baker certainly fits that description. So does Vijaya Gadde.

It’s also noteworthy that a number of these types, including Baker and big fat lying former CIA Director John Brennan, seem to be laundered through CNN and MSNBC stints as “security analysts.” I.e. to use TV to spread regime-desired disinformation, such as to help quash the Hunter Biden laptop story in 2020.

This use of spycraft against American citizens seems to be an increasingly recurring and increasingly visible aspect of our post-2016 dystopia. Recall that it appears to have been a feature of the Jan. 6, 2021 “insurrection,” the 2020 Michigan tyrant “kidnapping” false flag operation, the Spygate operation, the attempted FBI entrapment of Sen. Ron Johnson, and many more.

While the vast majority of Americans don’t use Twitter, it has a massive, outsized influence on every American’s everyday life. We saw that in real-time with the consent spiral manufactured, possibly by national security agencies, to impose unprecedented lockdowns in 2020.

Twitter has a fraction of the users of every other major online network, yet it controls the political conversation because of who uses it and how they use it. It’s helpful, even if not literally true, to think of Twitter as an influence operation targeted at Congress, the executive agencies, the corporate media that control the ruling Democrat Party, and other members of the ruling class. That’s who its users overwhelmingly are, especially the most active.

Twitter is where people go to link up to the woke hive mind. That’s why it’s poison to everyone, but especially Republican officeholders.

This is why Republican politicians make some of their stupidest decisions when framed by what they see on Twitter, because the Twitter “consensus” reflects the opposite of their constituents’ views. (This disconnect is a major reason The Federalist exists.) It’s simply a pressure tool for the leftist mob. That’s also why big business leaders are idiots to respond to Twitter mobs — the majority of their customers don’t pay any attention to Twitter.

This information asymmetry has been highly destructive to the American republic but highly useful to the nefarious actors who run our deeply corrupt federal agencies. For one thing, it has allowed the veiled imposition of a vast information iron curtain across Western countries where many people believe themselves to be free citizens. Twitter is the tip of the spear for this growing censorship regime now consisting of a shadowy web between federal officials, social media-sponsored “fact checking” censorship hacks, Big Tech, corporate media, intelligence agencies, and who knows what other entities.

Twitter has been the typical initiator of bans on a person, organization, idea, or conversation from an online voice — and sometimes from basic life necessities such as banking. Then Facebook, Apple, Google, and others follow suit. The other colluding entities get Twitter to do the heavy lifting of canceling a dissenting person, political movement, conversation, or idea, then just file behind and copy Twitter so they avoid blowback.

We now have more evidence to add to the growing pile establishing that Twitter wasn’t just functioning this way because almost all of its employees were far-left Democrat activists. It also has been rigging public conversation, and therefore public life and elections themselves, at the behest of elected and unelected Democrats using their public positions for deeply partisan gain.

The Biden administration admitted it was flagging specific posts for Twitter to take down. It called for Big Tech to inflict “consequences” on those who disagreed with Democrats, and attempted to publicly formalize its evisceration of this vital tool of democracy — free speech — with a “Disinformation Governance Board.” The Biden administration’s national security apparatus openly declared that anyone who doesn’t agree with Democrat politicians could be investigated as a potential “domestic terrorist”!

These government-entwined monopoly platforms obviously exist to disseminate coordinated information operations and kill competing information. They are staffed with de facto or actual intelligence agents at levels high enough to disappear key internal records. Anyone who claims these are simply “private companies” is either not intellectually competent, in denial, or part of the ongoing psy-op to deny Americans the right to make their own political decisions based on genuinely free and open public discussions.


Joy Pullmann is executive editor of The Federalist, a happy wife, and the mother of six children. Here’s her printable household organizer for faith-centered holidays. Sign up here to get early access to her next ebook, “101 Strategies For Living Well Amid Inflation.” Her bestselling ebook is “Classic Books for Young Children.” Mrs. Pullmann identifies as native American and gender natural. She is the author of several books, including “The Education Invasion: How Common Core Fights Parents for Control of American Kids,” from Encounter Books. Joy is also a grateful graduate of the Hillsdale College honors and journalism programs.

Hunter Biden’s Strategy to Go on The Offensive Further Indicts the Feds


BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND | DECEMBER 12, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/12/12/did-the-dea-raid-hunter-bidens-former-shrink-to-scoop-up-a-second-laptop/

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A strangely timed DEA raid, whistleblower claims, and other red flags raise new questions about Hunter Biden and his family affairs.

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Two months after the FBI subpoenaed the laptop Hunter Biden had abandoned at a Delaware computer repair store, the Drug Enforcement Administration searched the office of Hunter’s one-time psychiatrist Keith Ablow and seized a second laptop Hunter had left with him. The timing of the DEA raid and the fact that criminal charges were never filed against Ablow, coupled with whistleblowers’ claims that the FBI buried evidence against Hunter Biden, raises the question of whether the search was a pretext to recover Hunter’s laptop and protect the Biden family. 

While the DEA’s recovery of the second Hunter Biden laptop escaped scrutiny over the last nearly three years, a Washington Post article from Saturday brings that laptop into focus — and with it questions about the DEA’s seizure of the laptop and agents’ decision to return it to Hunter. 

Back in the News

In a weekend article titled “Some Hunter Biden Allies Making Plans to go After His Accusers,” The Washington Post reported that Hunter and his closest advisers are plotting an offensive for when Republicans assume control of the House of Representatives in January. The strategy sessions to counter what Biden associates frame as “an expected onslaught of investigations by House Republicans” began last September, according to the Post, with a meeting at the California home of Hunter Biden’s friend and lawyer Kevin Morris. 

Morris, already famous in the entertainment industry as an attorney for the co-creators of “South Park,” gained notoriety when the New York Post reported that Morris “footed Hunter Biden’s overdue taxes totaling over $2 million.” In addition to Morris, David Brock, a liberal activist, reportedly joined in the September 2022 strategy session. “At one point, Hunter Biden himself happened to call into the meeting, connecting briefly by video to add his own thoughts,” according to the Post. 

While not detailing Hunter’s purported thoughts, The Washington Post reported that Morris suggested “it was crucial” “for Hunter Biden’s camp to be more aggressive.” According to Saturday’s article, Morris then described during the September meeting at his California home the “defamation lawsuits the team could pursue against the presidential son’s critics, including Fox News, Eric Trump and Rudy Giuliani.” Morris also reportedly “outlined extensive research on two potential witnesses against Hunter Biden — a spurned business partner named Tony Bobulinski and a computer repairman named John Paul Mac Isaac.”

Brock provided more insight, telling the Post: “They feel that there is a whole counternarrative missing because of the whole Hunter-hater narrative out there.” “What we really got into was more the meat of it, the meat of what a response would look like,” Brock said of the September meeting. To aid the efforts, Brock planned to start a new group — since launched — named Facts First USA, which Brock described as a “SWAT team” designed to “ensure that the media and public do not accept the false narratives that flows from congressional investigations.”

More recently, according to the Post, “Brock’s group, Facts First, is engaging with Hunter Biden and those in his immediate circle.” Brock is reportedly “reviewing research that Morris has conducted on Biden’s adversaries, including Bobulinski and Mac Isaac.” 

According to The Washington Post, Morris and others are also focused on whether the data claimed to be recovered from the laptop Hunter Biden abandoned at the Delaware computer repair store, “was improperly obtained and distributed,” with Hunter and his allies suggesting that the materials released by Giuliani and others may not have originated from the laptop Hunter abandoned at the repair shop. Instead, the help-Hunter crew posits that the information may have been improperly taken from a laptop Hunter left with Ablow, whom the Post frames as “close to Republican activist Roger Stone.” The Post then reported that “Morris has been overseeing a forensic analysis of that laptop to determine if it was the basis of the hard drives that were later distributed by Trump allies.” 

Morris began floating a similar tangled conspiracy theory in May 2022, with CBS News reporting, “Morris and his team have been circulating provocative slides that tease a coming counter-narrative to political attacks against the president’s son.” The slides describe a “contextualized theory” positing that “there was no laptop dropped off with Mac Isaac, just a laptop which Hunter abandoned on Feb. 1, 2019, at the office of his psychiatrist, Dr. Keith Ablow.” 

The New York Post’s Miranda Devine also lighted the conspiracy theory Morris floated in May, writing: “Morris alleges in his scrawled mind map, and in conversations with confidants, that Trump ally Roger Stone and his lawyer, Tyler Nixon, masterminded a plot with Ablow and Mac Isaac to create ‘clones’ of the laptop left in Newburyport to damage Joe before the 2020 election.” Morris pushed the theory based on Stone writing a foreword for Ablow’s 2020 book, “Trump Your Life,” and Ablow’s appearances on Fox News. 

But as Devine detailed in her article, the material contained on the MacBook abandoned at Mac Isaac’s business included material created after Hunter had left the laptop with Ablow: “The biggest problem with Morris’ conspiracy theory of the ‘Ablow clones’ is that there are authentic videos and other material unique to the Mac Isaac laptop that were created after Hunter left his second laptop at Ablow’s office.” 

Ablow has also dismissed the counternarrative as “a work of fiction,” stating: “I never looked at any laptop belonging to Hunter Biden, much less shared any laptop belonging to Mr. Biden with anyone, ever.” “I wouldn’t know how to access a password-protected laptop if my life depended on it,” Ablow added. Stone reportedly said the theory is “insane conjecture bordering on defamation.” Mac Isaac described it at the time as a “loose effort to muddy the waters.”

In response to Morris’s most recent push, as captured in Saturday’s Washington Post article, Mac Isaac’s attorney, Brian Della Rocca, told The Federalist, “As we have always said, Hunter Biden knows it is his laptop. That is why neither he nor his father have ever actually denied that it is his.” “The night before the story broke,” Della Rocca added, “Hunter’s attorney reached out to John Paul to ask about whether he still had Hunter’s laptop.” What Morris is doing now, Mac Isaac’s attorney claims, is “nothing more than trying to create more of a stir so the story will be worth more in Hollywood.”

Beneath the Surface

Whether crafting a Hollywood story or an offensive strategy to protect Hunter Biden, what Morris and Hunter’s other confidants fail to realize, however, is that by pushing the theory that the material recovered from the Delaware laptop originated from the laptop left with Ablow, they are resurrecting a story that received little scrutiny at the time: the DEA’s raid of Ablow’s office. And since Morris first pushed this conspiracy theory in May 2022, “highly credible whistleblowers” have come forward and accused the Department of Justice and FBI “of burying ‘verified and verifiable’ dirt on President Biden’s troubled son Hunter by incorrectly dismissing the intelligence as “disinformation.” 

So, the question arises: Was the DEA’s raid of Ablow’s office a pretext to recover Hunter’s second laptop? And relatedly: Did the DEA return the laptop to Hunter without securing the evidence first for the criminal investigation against the now-president’s son?

While most Americans now know of the infamous laptop Hunter reportedly abandoned at a Delaware computer repair store, shortly after the New York Post broke the news that material recovered from the laptop implicated Joe Biden in Hunter’s shady business dealings, NBC News reported on Oct. 30, 2020: “[A]ccording to two people familiar with the matter, a different Hunter Biden laptop landed in the custody of the DEA in February when they executed a search warrant on the Massachusetts office of a psychiatrist accused of professional misconduct,” the psychiatrist being Ablow. 

The February 2020 raid on the office of Hunter’s one-time Massachusetts-based psychiatrist Ablow received only passing mention at the time, with local outlets reporting that the DEA claimed the execution of the search warrant was part of an “ongoing investigation.” Coverage at the time also highlighted the revocation of Ablow’s medical license for alleged “inappropriate sexual activity with patients and illegally giving prescriptions to employees.”

There was no mention of the recovery of a laptop belonging to Hunter Biden at the time, or at any time until two unnamed sources told NBC News of that detail on Oct. 30, 2020. Since then, Ablow confirmed that Hunter left his laptop at a bungalow attached to Ablow’s office in 2019, where the Biden son was reportedly staying for intravenous ketamine treatments for his addiction in December 2018 and January 2019. 

Ablow reportedly “made repeated efforts to persuade Hunter Biden to retrieve his computer,” with Ablow even contacting Hunter’s attorney to arrange for its return.” However, the second laptop reportedly remained in a safe in Ablow’s basement for a year, and the DEA raided the psychiatrist on Feb. 13, 2020, then returned the computer to Hunter’s lawyer George Mesires.

Red Flags

The timing of the raid and the return of the computer to Hunter’s lawyer raises several red flags, especially since federal charges were never brought against Ablow. First, the Feb. 13, 2020, DEA raid occurred some nine months after the Massachusetts Board of Medicine suspended Ablow’s medical license on May 15, 2019, for purportedly diverting “controlled substances from patients,” among other things. One would think the DEA would act more promptly to execute a search warrant to prevent the destruction of evidence.

Second, the DEA only executed the search warrant after the FBI issued a grand jury subpoena in mid-December of 2019 to seize the first Hunter Biden laptop from the Delaware store owner, raising the question of whether the real goal was to ensure there were no more Biden laptops floating about before the 2020 presidential election.

Third, even if there was nothing pretextual or nefarious about the raid on Ablow’s office, that the DEA returned the laptop to Hunter’s lawyer raises other concerns because at the time, and still to this day, Hunter Biden was under investigation. In fact, it was that investigation that served as the basis for the FBI to subpoena the laptop from the Delaware repair store. Given the ongoing investigation into Hunter Biden, why would the DEA return the laptop to his attorney?

Given the FBI whistleblowers’ claims that government agents buried incriminating evidence against Hunter Biden, the House oversight committees should pose these questions to the DEA to ensure that federal agency was not also acting as a protect-Biden front. And we can thank Morris and The Washington Post for reminding us of the DEA’s seizure of that second Hunter laptop — something that at the time seemed straightforward but, given the developments over the last six months, now smells suspect.

Editor’s note: This article has been updated to reflect that NBC News, not CBS News, first reported on the DEA’s recovery of a second laptop.


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

Third Batch of Twitter Files Shows Twitter’s Lead Censor Joking About FBI Collusion


BY: TRISTAN JUSTICE | DECEMBER 10, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/12/10/third-batch-of-twitter-files-shows-twitters-lead-censor-joking-about-fbi-collusion/

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‘I’m a big believer in calendar transparency,’ Roth said. ‘But I reached a certain point where my meetings became… very interesting.’

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The third batch of “Twitter Files,” published by independent journalist Matt Taibbi, revealed Twitter’s former lead censor, Yoel Roth, joking about the company’s collusion with government intelligence entities.

After [Jan. 6, 2021], internal Slacks show Twitter executives getting a kick out of intensified relationships with federal agencies,” Taibbi wrote, publishing internal Slack messages that show Roth “lamenting a lack of ‘generic enough’ calendar descriptions [for] concealing his ‘very interesting’ meeting partners.

I’m a big believer in calendar transparency,” Roth said in one message. “But I reached a certain point where my meetings became… very interesting.”

In response to a colleague who commented “Very Boring Business Meeting That Is Definitely Not About Trump ;)” Roth responded “Preeeeeeeetty much.”

DEFINITELY NOT meeting with the FBI I SWEAR,” Roth wrote in another message.

The Slack messages offer more evidence of explicit coordination between the government and Twitter to censor conservative accounts. The second batch of Twitter Files, published by independent journalist Bari Weiss on Thursday, revealed the lead of the company’s Strategic Response Team (SRT), a group designated to run the platform’s shadowban operations, was a former federal intelligence operative. Jeff Carlton, the team’s head, was previously an analyst for the CIA and the FBI, according to his since-deleted LinkedIn page.

This week, Twitter CEO Elon Musk also revealed that the company’s deputy general counsel, who played a key role in the suppression of the Hunter Biden laptop story, was a former general counsel of the FBI.

Weeks before the 2020 election, Twitter blocked users from publishing links to blockbuster stories from the New York Post that implicated then-candidate Joe Biden in his son’s potentially criminal overseas business ventures. Emails that showed the former vice president’s direct involvement with Hunter Biden’s influence-peddling schemes came from an abandoned laptop in Delaware. Despite no evidence the computer was ever hacked, Twitter suppressed the story across the platform citing its hacked materials policy. The first batch of “Twitter Files” out last week showed that the company deliberately shut down the bombshells from the Post out of partisanship.

Jim Baker played a pivotal role in censoring the story at Twitter as the company’s deputy general counsel, telling colleagues “caution is warranted” that the content might be the consequence of a hack. Prior to joining Twitter, Baker was instrumental in the FBI’s deep-state operation to undermine President Donald Trump by peddling the Russia hoax. Musk fired him from Twitter Tuesday and announced the termination with a tweet.

In light of concerns about Baker’s possible role in suppression of information important to the public dialogue, he was exited from Twitter today,” Musk wrote.

His explanation was …unconvincing,” Musk wrote in a follow-up on Baker’s justification for suppressing the laptop story.

Another post from Taibbi showed Twitter Policy Director Nick Pickles asking colleagues if employees could refer to corporate relationships with the FBI and Department of Homeland Security as “partnerships.”

In one internal Slack post published Friday night, Taibbi further exposed the partisan nature of Twitter’s censorship operations. On Oct. 9, 2020, someone shared a Trump tweet with Roth which read, “Breaking News: 50,000 OHIO VOTERS getting WRONG ABSENTEE BALLOTS. Out of control. A Rigged Election!!!”

“‘[A] rigged election’ would be enough to be in violation right?‘” wrote an employee whose name has been redacted.

If the claim of fact were inaccurate, yes,” Roth wrote, then added, “But it looks like that’s true,” with a link to an article from NPR.

The post in question no longer appears in a keyword search for it on Twitter, even though employees knew the facts were accurate.


Tristan Justice is the western correspondent for The Federalist. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and The Daily Signal. His work has also been featured in Real Clear Politics and Fox News. Tristan graduated from George Washington University where he majored in political science and minored in journalism. Follow him on Twitter at @JusticeTristan or contact him at Tristan@thefederalist.com.

Elon Musk Fires Former FBI Lawyer Behind Russiagate Hoax Following ‘Unconvincing’ Explanation for Hunter Biden Laptop Censorship


BY: TRISTAN JUSTICE | DECEMBER 07, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/12/07/elon-musk-fires-former-fbi-lawyer-behind-russiagate-hoax-following-unconvincing-explanation-for-hunter-biden-laptop-censorship/

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Jim Baker was the Clinton campaign’s ‘go-to, speed-dial contact’ to plant false claims about Trump collusion with the Kremlin.

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Twitter CEO Elon Musk fired Jim Baker, the company’s deputy general counsel, on Tuesday after an “unconvincing” explanation of the terminated employee’s role in the suppression of the Hunter Biden laptop story.

On Sunday, independent journalist Matt Taibbi posted a link to an article from attorney Jonathan Turley published in the New York Post which connected Baker’s work at Twitter with his prior operations peddling the Russia hoax at the Department of Justice. In 2016, Baker was the Clinton campaign’s “go-to, speed-dial contact” to plant false claims about Kremlin collusion and the Trump White House effort. Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann picked Baker to give junk intelligence about a purported connection between President Donald Trump and the Russian Alfa Bank.

He was effectively forced out due to his role and reportedly found himself under criminal investigation. He became a defender of the Russian investigations despite findings of biased and even criminal conduct,” Turley wrote. “After leaving the FBI, Twitter seemed eager to hire Baker as deputy general counsel.”

The first batch of “Twitter Files” out on Friday revealed how Baker went on to play an instrumental role in suppressing blockbuster stories from the New York Post about Hunter Biden’s laptop and the Biden family business ventures — stories containing emails that implicated then-candidate Joe Biden in the dealings.

“Baker soon weighed in with the same signature bias that characterized the Russian investigations,” Turley wrote. Internal documents made public last week show Baker pressed colleagues at Twitter for more information that Biden’s emails had been hacked.

“Caution is warranted,” Baker wrote, despite there never being evidence the emails were illegally hacked.

Musk responded to Taibbi’s post on Tuesday with the announcement that Baker had been fired.

“In light of concerns about Baker’s possible role in suppression of information important to the public dialogue, he was exited from Twitter today,” Musk wrote.

“Was he asked to explain himself?” inquired a user.

“Yes. His explanation was …unconvincing,” Musk replied.

In a “Twitter Files Supplemental” thread, Taibbi explained that last week’s delay in publishing the first round of files was due to Baker reviewing them without new Twitter leadership knowing.

“Twitter Deputy General Counsel (and former FBI General Counsel) Jim Baker was fired. Among the reasons? Vetting the first batch of ‘Twitter Files’ — without knowledge of new management,” Taibbi wrote.

The post suggests Baker was running interference behind Musk’s back to minimize the fallout over the reveal of Twitter’s behind-the-scenes operations to elect Joe Biden in 2020.

While general counsel at the FBI, Baker was central to the agency’s deep-state operations to undermine Trump as an agent of the Russian government. According to former FBI Deputy General Counsel Trisha Anderson in her testimony before House lawmakers in 2018, Baker “personally reviewed and made edits to the [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act]” warrant on Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

The ex-FBI counsel would later defend the agency’s conduct, telling Yahoo News that officials took “seriously” the uncorroborated dossier commissioned by the DNC that alleged collusion, but “we didn’t necessarily take it literally.”

The agency’s legal chief, however, took it seriously enough to sign off on warrants to spy on political opponents. At least two of the warrant applications to conduct government surveillance on Page were declared illegal by a federal judge.


Tristan Justice is the western correspondent for The Federalist. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and The Daily Signal. His work has also been featured in Real Clear Politics and Fox News. Tristan graduated from George Washington University where he majored in political science and minored in journalism. Follow him on Twitter at @JusticeTristan or contact him at Tristan@thefederalist.com.

Targeting of pro-lifers shows FBI is ‘rotted at its core’: report


By Ryan Foley, Christian Post Reporter

Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/targeting-of-pro-lifers-shows-fbi-is-rotted-at-its-core-report.html/

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A new report compiled by congressional Republicans suggests that the FBI is “rotted at its core,” citing the targeting of pro-life activists and parents concerned about their children’s education.

Republicans on the United States House of Representatives’ Judiciary Committee released a report Friday titled “FBI Whistleblowers: What Their Disclosures Indicate About the Politicization of the FBI and the Justice Department.” The report contains approximately 1,000 pages of correspondence between lawmakers and current and former agency employees and the executive branch seeking clarification and documents related to actions lawmakers view as concerning. 

“Over the last year, a multitude of whistleblowers have approached Judiciary Committee Republicans with allegations of political bias by the FBI’s senior leadership and misuses of the agency’s federal law-enforcement powers,” the report states. “Whistleblowers describe the FBI’s Washington hierarchy as ‘rotted at its core,’ maintaining a ‘systemic culture of unaccountability,’ and full of ‘rampant corruption, manipulation, and abuse.’”

The report specifically outlined information obtained from whistleblower testimony and other sources revealing how “actions by FBI leadership show a political bias against conservatives.” It expressed particular concern about the FBI’s embrace of an “anti-life agenda” while allowing “attacks on pro-life facilities and churches to go unabated.” 

For its part, the FBI is insisting that it continues to go about its business in a politically neutral way. In a statement shared with The Christian Post, the law enforcement agency asserted that “we follow the facts without regards to politics.”

“The FBI has testified to Congress and responded to letters from legislators on numerous occasions to provide an accurate accounting of how we do our work. The men and women of the FBI devote themselves to protecting the American people from terrorism, violent crime, cyber threats and other dangers,” the statement added. “While outside opinions and criticism often come with the job, we will continue to follow the facts wherever they lead, do things by the book, and speak through our work.” 

The document identified the harassment and threats U.S. Supreme Court justices have found themselves subject to following the leak of the draft decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which concluded that the U.S. Constitution does not contain a right to abortion, as violations of federal law: “In the face of ongoing threats to the justices and their families, the DOJ has, without any public explanation, neglected to institute a single prosecution for those acting in apparent violation and even brazen defiance of the law.”

After classifying the attacks on pro-life pregnancy centers following the leak of the Dobbs decision as violations of the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act, the report maintained that the DOJ was abiding by a double standard when it comes to enforcing the federal law. It lamented that “the administration has looked the other way on violence targeting pro-life groups and facilities” while acting “thuggish” in enforcing the provisions of the FACE Act preventing the assault of abortion clinic workers.

“On Sept. 23, an FBI SWAT team raided the home of Pennsylvania resident Mark Houck to arrest him on an indictment charging FACE Act violations punishable by up to 11 years in prison, based on simple shoving incidents. The warrant alleged that on Oct. 13, 2021, Houck shoved a Planned Parenthood volunteer escort outside a clinic. Houck’s wife, however, explained that Houck was provoked by the Planned Parenthood activist making ‘crude … inappropriate and disgusting’ comments to Houck’s 12-year-old son.”

The report added that the FBI deployed 15 vehicles and 25 agents to his home, where they pointed guns at Houck and his family, all because of a confrontation between the pro-life activist and the Planned Parenthood escort as he and his son prayed outside the abortion clinic. It added that while the FBI “claims that it is investigating ‘a series of attacks and threats targeting pregnancy resource centers, faith-based organizations, and reproductive health clinics,’” it hinted at a double standard because “the FBI has not executed any SWAT team ‘dawn’ raids to make arrests in these cases.”

The document contained additional examples of the DOJ’s FACE Act enforcement, which resulted in pro-life activists facing 11 years in prison.

In addition to suggestions of a political bias against pro-lifers, the report pointed to a similar derision toward “parents resisting a far-left educational curriculum.” It recounted the memorandum authored by U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland directing law enforcement agencies to address a “disturbing spike in harassment, intimidation, and threats of violence” toward school officials. 

The document stressed that the memo came five days after the National School Boards Association likened the “malice, violence, and threats” directed at school officials to “a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes” and suggested that the federal government use counterterrorism statutes to prosecute those engaged in such behavior. The DOJ memo and the NSBA letter prompted considerable backlash, leading to Garland testifying before Congress. 

While Garland assured lawmakers that he did not view “parents getting angry at school boards” as an example of domestic terrorism, a May 20 report released by the NSBA indicated that the Biden administration collaborated with the organization to craft the Sept. 29, 2021, letter that predated the memo. 

According to the NSBA report, “White House officials discussed the existence of the [NSBA] Letter, its requests, and the contents of the Letter with Department of Justice officials more than a week before the Letter was finalized and sent to President [Joe] Biden.”

Friday’s report added that “the FBI quickly operationalized Attorney General Garland’s directive,” with FBI officials creating a new threat tag titled “EDUOFFICIALS” that applied to all “investigations and assessments of threats specifically directed against school board administrators, board members, teachers, and staff.” The report cited “information from whistleblowers” revealing that “the FBI has opened investigations with the EDUOFFICIALS threat tag in almost every region of the country and relating to all types of educational settings.”

Examples of incidents that led to FBI investigations included a mother informing a school board “we are coming for you.” The complaint that led to the investigation presented the woman as a threat because of her membership in a so-called “right-wing mom’s group” titled “Moms for Liberty” and her status as a “gun owner.” 

Another parent that became the target of an FBI investigation vocally expressed opposition to mask mandates, with the complaint against him implying that he “fit the profile of an insurrectionist” because “he rails against the government,” “believes all conspiracy theories” and “has a lot of guns and threatens to use them.” 

The complainant admitted to the FBI that they had “no specific information or observations of … any crimes or threats” and submitted the complaint because the FBI had created a website “to submit tips to the FBI in regards to any concerning behavior directed toward school boards.” 

Other findings in the report declared that “The FBI is artificially inflating and manipulating domestic violent extremism statistics for political purposes,” adding: “the FBI downplayed and sought to reduce the spread of the serious allegations of wrongdoing leveled against Hunter Biden,” “the FBI is abusing its foreign surveillance authorities” and “the FBI is purging employees who refuse to align themselves with the leadership’s political ideology.”

It also denounced the raid upon former President Donald Trump’s residence at Mar-a-Lago over the summer. 

Ryan Foley is a reporter for The Christian Post. He can be reached at: ryan.foley@christianpost.com

Fox News anchor confronts former CIA officer for endorsing claim that Hunter Biden laptop was Russian disinformation


By CHRIS ENLOE | October 12, 2022

Read more at https://www.theblaze.com/news/bret-baier-confronts-david-priess-hunter-biden-laptop-story/

Image source: Fox News screenshot

Fox News anchor Bret Baier confronted a former CIA officer on Tuesday for endorsing claims that the Hunter Biden laptop story was Russian disinformation.

After the New York Post dropped the pre-election bombshell in October 2020, the laptop story was quickly denounced as Russian disinformation. The media pushed a letter from dozens of former intelligence officials that claimed the story had “all the classic earmarks of a Russian information operation.” No real evidence, however, was ever presented to corroborate that claim.

Of course, the laptop story is not Russian disinformation, and media outlets like the New York Times and Politico have since verified the authenticity of the laptop.

While interviewing former CIA officer David Priess — one of that infamous letter’s signatories — Baier directly asked about his decision to advance false claims.

“Why did you sign on to that?” Baier asked.

Priess, however, defended his endorsement and tried to claim the letter was neutral, such that it did not outright call the laptop story Russian “disinformation.”

“Because of what it says. It has all of the classic earmarks of one of these operations,” he said. “You’ll note elsewhere in the letter, if you read it, that it also says we don’t know if this is a Russian operation at all. That has been dramatically changed in the retelling of the story.”

“The letter is merely pointing out that this is the kind of thing that time after time after time that people who study Russian disinformation, intelligence officers who look at Russian tactics, over the long period of time — this is the kind of thing they like to amplify, to sow discord within target countries,” he continued. “The fact is, the tactic is an old one, a tried and true one, and it’s been successful in the past.”

“But in this case it was not true — it was not true,” Baier fired back, citing media outlets that authenticated it.

But the former CIA officer remained stalwart. Priess told Baier he does not regret signing the letter and claimed it did not change the outcome of the 2020 election, despite President Joe Biden citing the letter during a debate with Donald Trump. Priess, in fact, said the letter was not wrong because it did not call the laptop story “Russian disinformation,” but one that has the “earmarks of a Russian information operation.”

“It’s not my fault if people don’t look up definitions,” Priess said smugly.

“I know, but the purpose of the letter is to have an effect,” Baier shot back. “And the nuance that you’re talking about never made it to candidate Biden, because he said it plainly on a debate stage.”

While the nuance that Priess drew out may be true, one wonders why those intelligence officers did not rush to correct the media and Biden if they were wrong by calling the laptop clear Russian disinformation. As Baier pointed out, the intelligence officials allowed the letter to be used as “Biden information,” rhetoric that helped his campaign.

EXCLUSIVE: ‘A Nexus To Terrorism’: Illegals Flagged As Potential National Security Risks Soared Nearly 600% In Last Year


By JENNIE TAER, INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER | October 03, 2022

Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/10/03/migrants-immigration-border/

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  • The number of illegal aliens labeled as “special interest migrants” for potential national security risks increased by nearly 600% to 25,627 in fiscal year 2022, according to internal Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.
  • Of the total, 60% of the illegal migrants were from Turkey, a country where Islamic State and other foreign terrorist organizations are known to operate, according to the State Department.
  • “Anybody that doesn’t think that serious threats to this country are sneaking in right now is naïve,” former Border Patrol Chief Rodney Scott told the DCNF.

Border Patrol saw an almost 600% increase in fiscal year 2022 in the number of illegal migrants flagged as “special interest” over national security concerns, according to internal U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data exclusively obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.

A “special interest” migrant is someone who isn’t a U.S. citizen who frequently travels in areas designated as national security concerns due to terrorist activity or other types of “nefarious activity,” according to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Border Patrol agents encountered 25,627 “special interest” illegal migrants compared to the 3,675 encounters in fiscal year 2021, according to the data.

“Special interest aliens” can include individuals who “possibly have a nexus to terrorism,” according to 2019 DHS fact sheet. The newly-obtained internal data refers to these individuals as “special interest migrants,” however.

Most of the encounters were recorded at the southern border, with the highest in El Paso, Texas, according to the data.

“When you have an open border, you don’t get to control who or what enters your home,” former Border Patrol Chief Rodney Scott told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “There are significant real threats coming across the border.”

“Unfortunately, all the current administration wants to focus on as an economic migrants and trying to say that they have a kinder, gentler migration policy, but they’re putting the entire Nation at Risk, as well as the millions of migrants that are handed to the cartels to be trafficked across the border,” Scott said.

CBP officials encountered over 2,000,000 migrants at the southern border between October 2021 and August 2022, a record number. Of those, CBP encountered 78 individuals on the terror watchlist.

Jennie Taer//Daily Caller News Foundation

Daily Caller News Foundation

“What you’re seeing is like a snapshot of what’s crossing the border, what the agents are encountering. That the bigger threat is they’re so overwhelmed that they’re leaving hundreds of miles of border on patrols every day,” Scott said.

If CBP can’t find derogatory information on them, “special interest” illegal migrants are typically released into the country, according to Scott.

“Unless when they run the record checks on that individual person flagged for some type of derogatory information, they’re going to be processed just like any other illegal alien. It basically means that they’re going to be processed, set up for a hearing in the future and released into the United States. We overly rely on the United States to have by current and valid information people that are global database, and that does not exist.”

Most of the “special interest” illegal migrants were from Turkey, which made up 60% of the grouping, with 15,376 encountered. Border Patrol also encountered 3,246 illegal migrants from Uzbekistan and 2,446 from Bangladesh.

Turkey, for example, is a “source and transit country” for Islamic State terrorists and other terrorists operating in Syria and Iraq, according to the State Department.

The Biden administration has implemented a number of policies that have allowed many illegal migrants to stay in the country. In August, it ended the Migrant Protection Protocols, which forced certain illegal migrants to await asylum proceedings in Mexico.

On the president’s first day in office, DHS issued a memorandum putting in place a 100-day moratorium on deportations. The notice also limited immigration enforcement to those who pose risks to national security, border security and public safety.

“Anybody that doesn’t think that serious threats to this country are sneaking in right now is naïve,” Scott said.

The FBI declined to comment on the matter. DHS did not respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.

Editor’s note: This article has been updated. 

Today’s THREE Politically INCORRECT Cartoons by A.F. Branco


    A.F. Branco Cartoon – Jaw Breaker

    A.F. BRANCO | on September 17, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-jaw-breaker/

    It’s almost like some Republicans are not doing their best to win congress in the 2022 election, McConnell?

    Snatching Defeat from Victory
    Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

    A.F. Branco Cartoon – Wrong Direction

    A.F. BRANCO | on September 18, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-wrong-direction-2/

    Omar is for defunding police, illegal Immigration, and no bail. all in the wrong direction for the country.

    Omar of Minnesota
    Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

    A.F. Branco Cartoon – Pillow Talk (Revised)

    A.F. BRANCO | on September 19, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-pillow-talk-revised/

    Here is the updated revised version of the cartoon “Pillow Talk” big Government and big Tech attack on free speech.

    My Pillow attacked
    Cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

    DONATE to A.F.Branco Cartoons – Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

    A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

    Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


    A.F. Branco Cartoon – Pillow Talk

    A.F. BRANCO | on September 16, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-pillow-talk/

    FBI detained Mike Lindell and seized his phone over his relationship with Trump and outspoken free speech.

    Mike Lindell Detained by FBI
    Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

    DONATE to A.F.Branco Cartoons – Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

    A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

    DCNF Reporter Details FBI Pressuring Americans To Sign Away Gun Rights


    By HAROLD HUTCHISON, REPORTER | September 08, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/09/08/dcnf-gabe-kaminsky-fbi-nics-forms//

    DCNF - Kaminsky FBI RAV Guns - Featured
    Screenshot/Rumble/Real America’s Voice

    A Daily Caller News Foundation reporter described how the FBI pressured Americans to sign away their gun rights during a Wednesday appearance on Real America’s Voice.

    “The FBI opened various investigations into online threats made online, things like people … making controversial remarks on social media, potentially people tipping other people off, maybe saying things on things like planes, and the FBI received these tips, open investigations and after that, they use these investigations as an impetus to show up at people’s homes or in other redacted locations,” DCNF investigative reporter Gabe Kaminsky said on “The Water Cooler.” (RELATED: ‘A Certain Irony’: Rand Paul Rips FBI After Bombshell DCNF Report)

    WATCH:

    At least 15 people signed forms relinquishing their Second Amendment rights after the FBI presented them, Kaminsky reported. Gun Owners of America obtained the forms through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and provided them to the DCNF.

    “Obviously, we spoke to a lot of legal experts and a lot of gun experts, including people at Gun Owners of America and lawyers who have worked lot with these groups and are very familiar with these groups, who were unsure of the legality of how this bodes for not only the Second Amendment, but other statutes of U.S. code,” Kaminsky said.

    One of the statutes in question discusses handling those who are mentally incompetent.

    “The glaring discrepancy here is that the Gun Control Act of 1968 rules that the only way people can be barred, or one way people can be barred from possessing guns is if they are ruled mentally defective or adjudicated as mentally defective or adjudicated as being in a mental facility, and so these people are not going through that legal process,” Kaminsky said.

    Our reporter @gekaminsky went on @RealAmVoice to talk about how the FBI was trying to get Americans to give up their second amendment rights. pic.twitter.com/8wejg2Y1aN

    — Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) September 8, 2022

    The House of Representatives voted in 2017 to overturn an Obama-era regulation allowing the Social Security Administration to share information about those with mental illness with the FBI, which operates the National Instant Background Check System (NICS).

    The Justice Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the DCNF.

    Government Anonymously Leaks Accusations Of Sensitive Nuclear Documents To Justify Trump Raid


    By NICOLE SILVERIO, MEDIA REPORTER | September 06, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/09/06/fbi-agents-discover-foreign-nation-nuclear-capabilities-mar-a-lago/

    President Trump Welcomes Finnish President Niinisto To White House
    (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

    The government anonymously leaked accusations that the FBI retrieved a document detailing a foreign government’s military defenses and nuclear capabilities inside Mar-a-Lago.

    A slew of the documents obtained at the Aug. 8 raid at Mar-a-Lago allegedly contained top secret content that only the president, his Cabinet members and near-Cabinet-level members are authorized to have knowledge of, sources told The Washington Post. Some of the information requires special clearances where only a few dozen people are allowed to have access to the operation’s existence. The sources did not reveal which foreign government’s information was contained in the document nor where in Mar-a-Lago the material was found, The Post reported. The leakers provided no detail on these so-called “nuclear documents,” leading to many unanswered questions on the severity and actual content in this document.

    U.S. intelligence and defense communities have four separate categories for material classified as “nuclear documents:” nuclear weapon science and design, nuclear plans for allied countries, including Britain and France, plans for adversaries and nations in the gray zones that include Israel and India.

    The FBI searched Trump’s home in part to find any classified documents relating to nuclear weapons, The Post previously reported. A receipt of property released to the public Aug. 12 disclosed that the FBI obtained 11 sets of classified documents, around 300 in total. These sets consisted of four sets of top secret information, three sets of secret and three more sets of confidential material. (RELATED: DOJ Says It Already Reviewed Documents Taken In Mar-A-Lago Raid)

    PALM BEACH, FL - JANUARY 11: The Atlantic Ocean is seen adjacent to President Donald Trump's beach front Mar-a-Lago resort, also sometimes called his Winter White House, the day after Florida received an exemption from the Trump Administration's newly announced ocean drilling plan on January 11, 2018 in Palm Beach, Florida. Florida was the only state to receive an exemption from the announced deregulation plan to allow offshore oil and gas drilling in all previously protected waters of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

    (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

    The Department of Justice (DOJ) later released a highly redacted affidavit revealing that 14 out the 15 boxes sent to the National Archives and Record Association (NARA) in January had classification markings. The boxes contained 184 documents – 25 of the documents had “top secret” markings, 92 were labeled “secret” and 67 had a “confidential” warning. The document on the foreign government was one of the last batches of material found, The Post reported.

    A grand jury issued May 11 ordered for all classified documents and top secret information to be returned to NARA, The Post reported. The subpoena listed more than two dozen sub-classifications of documents labeled “S/FRD,” which is primarily saved for the military use of nuclear weapons.

    Agents reportedly found documents that are top secret to the extent that senior officials in President Joe Biden’s administration are unauthorized to review them, according to The Post. Some of the documents were referred to as “HUMINT Control Systems,” which are used to protect intelligence gathered from secret human sources. Some material was never meant to be shared with foreign nations, according to the affidavit.

    U.S. District Judge Aileen M. Cannon approved Trump’s request for a special master to review the documents and temporarily barred the Department of Justice further review of the material. Some of the material had reportedly been subject to attorney-client privilege, though the DOJ found “limited” items protected under those terms.

    5 Times The Anti-Trump FBI’s ‘Trust Us’ Promise Fell Apart


    BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND | SEPTEMBER 02, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/09/02/5-times-the-anti-trump-fbis-trust-us-promise-fell-apart/

    former FBI Director James Comey

    Author Margot Cleveland profile

    MARGOT CLEVELAND

    VISIT ON TWITTER@PROFMJCLEVELAND

    MORE ARTICLES

    The Biden administration and the corporate media continue to assure Americans that the FBI’s raid on former president Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home was both legally justified and of the utmost necessity. But the deep-state cabal and the leftist media cartel provided similar assurances about Crossfire Hurricane and Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s targeting of Trump, with the assurances later proving worthless. 

    Here are five times SpyGate taught Americans to distrust and disprove accusations leveled at Donald Trump.

    1. Devin Nunes’ Memo Exposing FISA Abuse

    On February 2, 2018, the House Intelligence Committee, then-chaired by Republican Rep. Devin Nunes, released a four-page memo detailing abuses of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act by the FBI. 

    Before the memo’s release, the FBI publicly opposed the move, claiming in a public statement that the bureau had “grave concerns about material omissions of fact that fundamentally impact the memo’s accuracy.” Justice Department officials likewise opposed releasing the memo, warning that “doing so would be ‘extraordinarily reckless.’”

    The then-ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, Adam Schiff, also sought to scuttle the release of the memo — or at least preempt the detailed revelations of FISA abuse — by calling the memo a “conspiracy theory” in an op-ed for The Washington Post. In it, Schiff condemned the release, saying the memo was “designed to suggest that ‘a cabal of senior officials within the FBI and the Justice Department were so tainted by bias against President Trump that they irredeemably poisoned the investigation.’”

    Nancy Pelosi, who is now speaker of the House, likewise attacked Nunes, demanding in a letter to then-House Speaker Paul Ryan that Nunes be removed as Intelligence Committee chairman. Nunes “disgraced” the committee with his “dishonest” handling of the committee’s review of the Russia collusion problem, Pelosi wrote. Nunes’ committee, Pelosi claimed, had become a “charade” and a “coverup campaign … to hide the truth about the Trump-Russia scandal.” 

    In response to the Nunes memo, former FBI Director James Comey told the country the memo was “dishonest and misleading.” Comey further claimed it “wrecked the House intel committee, destroyed trust with Intelligence Community, damaged relationship with FISA court, and inexcusably exposed classified investigation of an American citizen.”

    Former CIA Director John Brennan also attacked Nunes, calling his exposure of the FISA abuse “appalling” and an abuse of his chairmanship of the House Intelligence Committee.

    Of course, years later, Nunes was proven correct, as the inspector general’s report confirmed, establishing that the Republican House Intelligence chair had, if anything, understated the FISA abuse. 

    For all the assurances the DOJ, FBI, their former leaders, and top politicians provided the American public, they were either lying or wrong — or both because there was “a cabal of senior officials within the FBI and the Justice Department … so tainted by bias against President Trump that they irredeemably poisoned the investigation.”

    2. Surveillance Warrants Are Hard to Get

    In addition to wrongly condemning Nunes’ memo, government officials attempted to calm concerns over the FISA surveillance by assuring the public that the process of obtaining a surveillance warrant was “rigorous” and that to obtain surveillance of American citizens, a court must find “probable cause” that warrants the wiretap.

    Adm. Michael Rogers, then a commander of United States Cyber Command, testified about the FISA process during a March 2017 congressional hearing. In response to a question posed to eliminate “confusion in the public” about the collection of personal data, Rogers confirmed that the National Security Agency “would need a court order based on probable cause to conduct electronic surveillance on a U.S. person inside the United States.” 

    During the same hearing, the then-recently fired former FBI Director Comey expanded on the surveillance process. “There is a statutory framework in the United States under which courts grant permission for electronic surveillance either in a criminal case or the national security case based on the showing of probable cause,” Comey testified before Congress. “It is a rigorous, rigorous process, involving all three branches of government,” the former FBI director stressed, noting it must go through an application process and then to a judge who must approve the order.

    The IG report on FISA abuse proved the promised rigor didn’t exist. And the later conviction of Kevin Clinesmith for “falsifying a document that was the basis for a surveillance warrant against former Trump campaign official Carter Page,” punctuated that reality. The facts revealed in the IG report further established that Americans’ faith in the FISA Court to serve as a check on the government was misplaced, with the judges serving as but a rubberstamp of the DOJ’s surveillance applications. So much for those assurances.

    3. Don’t Worry, ’Merica, No Spying on Trump Took Place

    A third assurance Americans received from the powers-that-be was that no spying on the Trump campaign occurred. The inspector general’s report on FISA abuse disproved those reassurances as well, revealing that the “Obama Administration Spied on the Trump Campaign Big Time.”

    This reality pushed Russia-collusion hoaxers into esoteric discussions on the true meaning of “spying.” Even the United States Senate played the “it depends what the meaning of spying is” game, with New Hampshire Democrat Sen. Jeanne Shaheen quizzing FBI Director Christopher Wray on whether he would agree with then-Attorney General William Barr’s use of the word “spying.”

    “I was very concerned by his use of the word spying, which I think is a loaded word,” Shaheen bemoaned. “When FBI agents conduct investigations against alleged mobsters, suspected terrorists, other criminals, do you believe they’re engaging in spying when they’re following FBI investigative policies and procedures?” the senator asked Wray.

    “That’s not the term I would use,” Wray replied, before noting that different people use different colloquialisms. 

    The discussion did not end there, however, with Shaheen pushing Wray on whether he had seen “any evidence that any illegal surveillance into the campaigns or the individuals associated with the campaigns by the FBI occurred.”

    “I don’t think I personally have any evidence of that sort,” Wray replied.

    But even sidestepping the silly debate over what “spying” means, the guarantee Shaheen provided the American public — that no illegal surveillance into the Trump campaign or individuals associated with the Trump campaign had occurred — proved worthless. 

    The Department of Justice has since admitted that it illegally surveilled former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page and that such surveillance reached Trump campaign documents. So, yes, our federal government illegally surveilled the campaign of a presidential candidate.

    4. Redactions Are Necessary to Protect Sources and Methods

    A fourth key commitment conveyed to Americans throughout the multi-year unraveling of the Russia collusion hoax concerned the need to redact details in the publicly released documents. Such redactions were necessary to protect sources and methods, our overlords assured us.

    For instance, in a December 9, 2019 press release Wray issued in conjunction with the DOJ’s inspector general’s report on FISA abuse, Wray “emphasized that the FBI’s participation in this process was undertaken with my express direction to be as transparent as possible, while honoring our duty to protect sources and methods that, if disclosed, might make Americans less safe.” Wray further promised that the FISA abuse report presented all material facts, “with redactions carefully limited and narrowly tailored to specific national security and operational concerns.” 

    Republican Sens. Ron Johnson and Chuck Grassley challenged that portrayal of the redactions, suggesting in a letter to then-Attorney General William Barr that several footnotes “were classified in the IG report only because they contradict certain claims made in the public version of the inspector general’s report on FISA warrants documenting misconduct in the FBI’s spying operation of the Trump campaign.”

    “We are concerned that certain sections of the public version of the report are misleading because they are contradicted by relevant and probative classified information redacted in four footnotes,” Grassley and Johnson wrote. “This classified information is significant not only because it contradicts key statements in a section of the report, but also because it provides insight essential for an accurate evaluation of the entire investigation.”

    The Republican senators then asked for the four footnotes to be declassified, stressing that “the American people have a right to know what is contained within these four footnotes and, without that knowledge, they will not have a full picture as to what happened during the Crossfire Hurricane investigation.”

    In April of 2020, Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell declassified the footnotes. And, as Grassley and Johnson had represented, the redactions weren’t necessary to protect “sources and methods.” Rather, the blacked-out lines were essential to distorting portions of the FISA report and to keeping the public in the dark about the full scope of the Spygate scandal.

    Another document declassified by Grenell exposed that Mueller’s team falsely represented to a federal judge (and the American public) the substance of Michael Flynn’s December 2016 telephone conversation with then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. 

    As I reported following Grenell’s declassification of the transcript of the call between Flynn, Trump’s then-incoming national security adviser, and Kislyak, Mueller’s office deceived the country and a federal court when prosecutors claimed Flynn had discussed U.S. sanctions with his Russian counterpart. The transcripts established that, contrary to court filings, Flynn never raised the issue of sanctions with the Russian ambassador.

    The release of the Flynn transcript did reveal, however, the FBI’s secret “sources and methods” — but the sources and methods were those of deep-state actors seeking to rid themselves of the president’s chosen national security adviser by launching a perjury trap and then lying about what Flynn said.

    5. Crossfire Hurricane Was Properly Predicated 

    To this day, both DOJ’s Inspector General Michael Horowitz and Wray maintain that the FBI’s launch of the Crossfire Hurricane investigation was properly predicated. Publicly released FBI documents say otherwise. 

    Former FBI agent Peter Strzok explained the supposed predicate for launching Crossfire Hurricane on July 31, 2016, in the opening “Electronic Communication” that he both prepared and approved. According to Strzok, the FBI opened the umbrella investigation into the Trump campaign after the government had “received information” “related to the hacking of the Democratic National Committee’s website/server.” 

    But Strzok’s summary of the information received made no mention of any intel obtained by the FBI related to the DNC hacking. Rather, the supposed intel “consisted of information received from an unnamed representative, now publicly known to be Alexander Downer, a then-Australian diplomat” stationed in London. The opening memorandum explained that Downer had relayed “statements Mr. [George] Papadopoulos made about suggestions from the Russians that they (the Russians) could assist the Trump campaign with the anonymous release of information during the campaign that would be damaging to Hillary Clinton.”

    The opening document then asserted that Papadopoulos “also suggested the Trump team had received some kind of suggestion from Russia that it could assist this process with the anonymous release of information during the campaign that would be damaging to Mrs. Clinton (and President Obama.).” The electronic communication added a caveat, though, noting that it was unclear whether Papadopoulos “or the Russians were referring to material acquired publicly of [sic] through other means. It was also unclear how Mr. Trump’s team reacted to the offer.”

    Thus, while Strzok framed the information received by the FBI as evidence “related to the hacking of the Democratic National Committee’s website/server,” the remainder of the Electronic Communication contradicted that claim and in fact acknowledged that the material might refer to “publicly acquired” information.

    What the FBI did — or rather didn’t do — after the launch of Crossfire Hurricane further confirms the sham predicate set forth by Strzok in the Electronic Communication. 

    While Papadopoulos’s statements to Downer supposedly prompted the FBI to open the Crossfire Hurricane investigation, agents failed to question Papadopoulos for six months. The FBI also put little (or no) effort into determining who purportedly told Papadopoulos that the Russians had dirt on Hillary. The supposed source of that statement, Joseph Mifsud, could have been easily located soon after the launch of Crossfire Hurricane if the FBI genuinely believed Russia had conspired with the Trump campaign to hack and release the DNC emails.

    Agents pursuing a legitimate investigation “would have immediately scoured Papadopoulos’s London-based connections and discovered he was associated with the London Centre of International Law Practice around the time he met with Downer. From there, the FBI could have easily fingered Mifsud as a possible source for the information, since he was listed as a board advisor and public source searches would show Mifsud had connections to Russia. (The intelligence community would have also hit on Mifsud’s many connections to Western intelligence agencies.)”

    But the FBI did none of this, waiting instead until late January 2017 to quiz Papadopoulos on the source of the supposed inside information coming from Russia. Yet, Wray and the DOJ’s inspector general want Americans to trust them when they say that agents launched Crossfire Hurricane based on Papadopoulos’s London chat with Downer over drinks. 

    Special Counsel John Durham, however, says otherwise, having released a statement following the DOJ’s report on FISA abuse that informed the public that, “based on the evidence collected to date,” his team had “advised the Inspector General that we do not agree with some of the report’s conclusions as to predication and how the FBI case was opened.”

    The special counsel’s public statements prove significant for two reasons. First, Durham’s comments refute the inspector general’s conclusions regarding the predication of Crossfire Hurricane. But beyond that, the fact that Durham needed to correct the record shows the lack of trust due the DOJ and even the inspector general’s office — something further confirmed during the special counsel’s prosecution of former Clinton campaign attorney Michael Sussmann. 

    Each of these five falsehoods peddled by the government to the public during the Russia collusion hoax has a clear corollary in the current scandal involving the FBI’s raid on Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home. And after the lies, pretext, and political warfare exposed during the unraveling of SpyGate, the DOJ and FBI’s current entreat to an angry public to “trust them” will be ignored — as it should.


    Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

      Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


      A.F. Branco Cartoon – Where There’s Smoke

      A.F. BRANCO | on September 2, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-where-theres-smoke-2/

      FBI is looking for the trump scandal smoking gun and we found it, itis them the FBI.

      FBI Smoking Gun
      Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022

      DONATE to A.F.Branco Cartoons – Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

      A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

      Mark Levin turns the tables on FBI over controversial photo included in DOJ court filing: ‘A grossly negligent use of classified documents’


      By CHRIS ENLOE | September 01, 2022

      Read more at https://www.theblaze.com/news/mark-levin-fbi-espionage-act-photo/

      Mark Levin suggested Wednesday that FBI agents who raided Mar-a-Lago may also have violated the Espionage Act, the same federal law that former President Donald Trump is accused of possibly violating.

      The search warrant used to raid Mar-a-Lago last month revealed that Trump is under investigation for possible violations of the Espionage Act. Most likely, investigators are probing potential violation of the controversial law over Trump allegedly retaining highly classified documents at Mar-a-Lago, documents that could imperil national security in the wrong hands. Government attorneys included in a Justice Department court filing this week a picture of classified documents strewn on the floor of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago office.

      Image source: The Department of Justice

      The problem is that it’s not exactly clear where the documents came from. Were they discovered strewn on the floor of Trump’s office, as the picture suggests? Or were they found in a part of the property not where they were photographed, then staged for an evidentiary photo?

      According to Levin, who is an attorney, staging the sensitive documents for a photo to be eventually released to the public via a court filing is a “grossly negligent use of classified documents” that should itself be prosecuted under the Espionage Act.

      “It seems to me an argument should be made that spreading highly classified documents on the floor, with the covers of the documents noting that the documents are indeed classified and taking a photograph even of the covers purely for gratuitous public use (i.e., for no reasonable or legal purpose), is a grossly negligent use of classified documents and the FBI should be held accountable under the Espionage Act,” Levin wrote on Twitter.

      Specifically, Levin quoted the original 1917 version of the law, which corresponds to Section F of 18 U.S. Code § 793. The law reads:

      Whoever, being entrusted with or having lawful possession or control of any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, note, or information, relating to the national defense, (1) through gross negligence permits the same to be removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of his trust, or to be lost, stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, or (2) having knowledge that the same has been illegally removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of its trust, or lost, or stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, and fails to make prompt report of such loss, theft, abstraction, or destruction to his superior officer—Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.

      So the argument goes, the documents were strategically photographed and the picture released to drive the public narrative in a certain direction. Indeed, constitutional lawyer Johnathan Turley outright said he believes the photo was “clearly intended for public consumption.”

      “It is curious that the DOJ would release this particular picture which suggests classified material laying around on the floor. The point is to state a fact that hardly needs an optical confirmation: the possession of documents with classified cover sheets,” Turley wrote. “The government could simply affirmatively state the fact of the covered pages and would not likely be challenged on that point without the inclusion of this one photo.

      “For critics, the photo may appear another effort (with prior leaks) to help frame the public optics and discussion. Clearly the court did not need the visual aid of a picture of documents with covers,” he added. “It seems clearly intended for public consumption.”

      FBI Boss Who Quit After Allegedly Blocking Hunter Biden Probe Also Reportedly Pushed To Pad Domestic Terror Data


      By GABE KAMINSKY, INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER | August 30, 2022

      Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/08/30/fbi-hunter-biden-domestic-terror-thibault/

      A top FBI agent who resigned after accusations he worked to undermine the probe into Hunter Biden’s laptop and business dealings also allegedly pressured bureau employees to pad domestic terror data, drawing accusations of politicizing the agency from Republicans.

      Timothy Thibault, the FBI’s former assistant special agent in charge who resigned Friday after Republican allegations of his political bias in connection to the Biden laptop investigation, was allegedly one of the agents trying to get FBI employees to bolster Domestic Violent Extremism (DVE) case counts to satisfy “performance metrics,” whistleblowers alleged in July, Breitbart News reported. Thibault and other bureau agents were allegedly pushing FBI employees to reclassify cases to involve DVE even if they do not meet the criteria, the outlet reported.

      DVE defines a person “without direction or inspiration from a foreign terrorist group or other foreign power who seeks to further political or social goals wholly or in part through unlawful acts of force or violence,” according to the FBI. The allegation that Thibault was one of the FBI agent’s pressuring others to bolster DVE cases was made to Breitbart by Republican Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan.

      FBI Director Christopher Wray testified in June 2021 that the bureau has a “very, very active domestic terrorism investigation program,” Jordan said in a July letter to the director, demanding he probe the alleged DVE data padding. (RELATED: High-Ranking FBI Official Out After Allegedly Stonewalling Hunter Biden Laptop Probe)

      “These whistleblower allegations that the FBI is padding its domestic violent extremist data cheapens actual examples of violent extremism,” said Jordan in the letter. “This information also reinforces our concerns—about which we have written to you several times—regarding the FBI’s politicization under your leadership.”

      Thibault was allegedly escorted out of the FBI building Friday, a source familiar with the matter told Fox News. The former agent was allegedly part of a widespread effort within the bureau to discredit and downplay “negative Hunter Biden information” and label it “disinformation,” Republican Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley told Wray in July, citing whistleblowers.

      Grassley accused Thibault in July of “improper conduct” in connection to the Hunter Biden probe after whistleblowers allegedly told the senator Thibault sought to shut the probe down. The investigation into Hunter Biden’s business dealings is still being run by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Delaware.

      The FBI declined the DCNF’s request for comment.


      Senior FBI agent at center of political bias claims resigns from bureau

      CHRIS PANDOLFO | August 30, 2022

      Read more at https://www.conservativereview.com/senior-fbi-agent-at-center-of-political-bias-claims-resigns-from-bureau-2657973136.html/

      A senior FBI agent who has faced scrutiny from lawmakers over alleged political bias has reportedly resigned and is no longer with the bureau.

      FBI Assistant Special Agent in Charge Timothy Thibault was seen being escorted out of the FBI building Friday, the Washington Times first reported. Fox News later confirmed that Thibault retired over the weekend and was walked out of the building according to standard procedure. Thibault’s departure from the FBI comes after whistleblowers have raised concerns with lawmakers over alleged political bias within the bureau. Senate Judiciary Committee ranking member Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and House Judiciary Committee ranking member Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) have come forward with allegations from sources within the bureau who said leadership, including Thibault, exerted pressure on subordinates to downplay the Hunter Biden investigation.

      Thibault was one of 13 special agents assigned to the Hunter Biden laptop investigation ahead of the 2020 election. In a July 18 letter sent to FBI Director Christopher Wray and Attorney General Merrick Garland, Grassley named Thibault and detailed “highly credible” whistleblower claims that he did not follow the FBI’s strict substantial factual predication guidelines in the course of the Hunter Biden investigation.

      “Based on allegations, verified and verifiable derogatory information on Hunter Biden was falsely labeled as disinformation,” Grassley wrote. “Accordingly, the allegations provided to my office appear to indicate that there was a scheme in place among certain FBI officials to undermine derogatory information connected to Hunter Biden by falsely suggesting it was disinformation.”

      After noting that Thibault displayed “a pattern of active public partisanship in his then public social media content,” Grassley revealed that in October 2020, one month before the presidential election, Thibault had ordered closed “an avenue of additional derogatory Hunter Biden reporting.”

      In a separate letter, Jordan disclosed whistleblower allegations that Thibault had pressured his subordinates to pad the number of reported “domestic violent extremism” cases to support the White House’s narrative about threats facing the country.

      “These whistleblower allegations that the FBI is padding domestic violent extremist data cheapens actual examples of violent extremism,” Jordan wrote. “This information also reinforces our concerns — about which we have written to you several times — regarding the FBI’s politicization under your leadership,” he told FBI Director Wray.

      Wray called the allegations against Thibault “deeply troubling” during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing earlier this month. Thibault was removed from his supervisory role on the Hunter Biden investigation after the whistleblower accusations became public.

      Constitutional Law Expert Jonathan Turley Responds to DOJ’s Release of Staged Photo of ‘Classified’ Documents Strewn Over the Floor at Mar-a-Lago


      By Cristina Laila | Published August 31, 2022

      Read more at https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2022/08/constitutional-law-expert-jonathan-turley-responds-dojs-release-staged-photo-classified-documents-strewn-floor-mar-lago/

      Constitutional law expert Jonathan Turley on Wednesday responded to the DOJ’s release of a staged photo of so-called ‘classified’ documents strewn over the floor at Mar-a-Lago.

      Biden’s corrupt Justice Department late Tuesday night responded to Trump’s request for a special master to be appointed to review the documents seized by the FBI in its raid of Trump’s Florida residence.

      Trump-appointed US District Judge Aileen Cannon from the southern district of Florida on Saturday announced the “preliminary intent to appoint a special master” to review all of the records seized by the FBI during its unprecedented raid on President Trump’s home at Mar-a-Lago.

      Judge Cannon said the FBI raid on Mar-a-Lago “involved political calculations” to diminish the leading voice of the Republican Party just months before the midterm election.

      TRENDING: Biden Justice Department’s Response to Trump’s Demand for Special Master Includes Staged Photo of Alleged ‘Classified’ Documents Perfectly Lined Up on Mar-a-Lago Carpet

      The DOJ’s response included one photo – “Attachment F” –  the alleged ‘classified’ documents Trump was supposedly hoarding at Mar-a-Lago.

      The FBI made sure to include the framed Time Magazine cover showing Trump in the White House being spied on by his Democrat political opponents – including Joe Biden.

      This was done on purpose – a message if you will – and further confirmation that the release of the photo was purely political.

      Jonathan Turley argued that the staged photo was “clearly intended for public consumption.”

      “The picture could be seen by many that secret documents were strewn over the floor when this appears the method used by the FBI to isolate classified documents.  It also seems entirely superfluous in releasing this one picture. ” Jonathan Turley wrote.

      “It is curious that the DOJ would release this particular picture which suggests classified material laying around on the floor. The point is to state a fact that hardly needs an optical confirmation: the possession of documents with classified cover sheets. Indeed, the top of roughly half of the documents are redacted in photo. The government could simply affirmatively state the fact of the covered pages and would not likely be challenged on that point without the inclusion of this one photo.” he added.

      “For critics, the photo may appear another effort (with prior leaks) to help frame the public optics and discussion. Clearly the court did not need the visual aid of a picture of documents with covers. It seems clearly intended for public consumption.” Turley said.

      Cristina Laila

      Cristina began writing for The Gateway Pundit in 2016 and she is currently the Associate Editor.

      Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


      A.F. Branco Cartoon – In Good Hands

      A.F. BRANCO | on August 31, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-in-good-hands/

      The FBI asks us to trust them with Trump’s confiscated attorney-client privilege despite their bias history.

      FBI  Has Trumps Attorney-Client Privilege Files
      Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

      DONATE to A.F.Branco Cartoons – Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

      A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

      High-Ranking FBI Official Out After Allegedly Stonewalling Hunter Biden Laptop Probe


      By TREVOR SCHAKOHL, LEGAL REPORTER | August 30, 2022

      Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/08/30/fbi-thibault-resigns-allegedly-stonewalled-hunter-biden-probe/

      Furloughed Federal Employees Return To Work As Partial Government Shutdown Ends
      Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images

      An elite FBI agent has resigned following allegations of political bias in the probe of Hunter Biden’s laptop, a source familiar with the matter told Fox News.

      Assistant Special Agent in Charge Timothy Thibault had often retweeted and responded to Twitter content attacking Republicans in 2020, with members of Congress including Republican Sens. Chuck Grassley of Iowa and John Kennedy of Louisiana recently questioning his actions. Grassley accused him of attempting to shut down the Hunter Biden laptop investigation, and he had recently been removed from the job of assistant special agent in charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, according to CBS News.

      The source said he was escorted out of the FBI building Friday in line with standard procedure, according to Fox News(RELATED: FBI Arrests Tennessee State Rep On Bribery And Conspiracy Charges)

      A representative for Grassley sent the Daily Caller News Foundation a comment following Thibault’s resignation.

      “Mr. Thibault’s blatant partisanship undermined the work and reputation of the FBI,” Grassley said. “This type of bias in high-profile investigations casts a shadow over all of the bureau’s work that he was involved in, which ranged from opening an investigation into Trump based on liberal news articles to shutting down investigative activity into Hunter Biden that was based on verified information. Political bias should have no place at the FBI, and the effort to revive the FBI’s credibility can’t stop with his exit. We need accountability, which is why Congress must continue investigating and the inspector general must fully investigate as I’ve requested.”

      Whistleblowers said local FBI authorities had instructed employees not to look at Hunter Biden’s laptop to avoid further influencing election results, Republican Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson claimed last week.

      Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) speaks during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the Fiscal Year 2023 Budget at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., April 26, 2022. Bonnie Cash/Pool via REUTERS

      Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) speaks during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the Fiscal Year 2023 Budget at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., April 26, 2022. Bonnie Cash/Pool via REUTERS

      Former President Donald Trump alleged on TruthSocial following Thibault’s departure that he had convinced the FBI to raid his Mar-A-Lago residence, but Fox News reported that Thibault was not involved.

      “We do not comment on personnel matters,” the FBI’s National Press Office told Daily Caller News Foundation.

      Redacted Mar-A-Lago Affidavit Confirms Biden’s DOJ Fished For A Crime To Pin On Trump


      BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND | AUGUST 29, 2022

      Read more at https://www.conservativereview.com/redacted-mar-a-lago-affidavit-confirms-bidens-doj-fished-for-a-crime-to-pin-on-trump-2657957240.html/

      Donald Trump getting into a plane

      Author Margot Cleveland profile

      MARGOT CLEVELAND

      VISIT ON TWITTER@PROFMJCLEVELAND

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      The search warrant affidavit unsealed on Friday confirms the Department of Justice used a bait-and-switch tactic to justify the FBI’s unprecedented raid on former President Donald Trump’s home. The unredacted portions of the affidavit further expose the Biden administration’s manipulative and tenuous basis for the search and its reliance on inapplicable federal criminal code provisions to justify the targeting of a political enemy. 

      At noon on Friday, the search warrant affidavit used by the DOJ to obtain a warrant to raid Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home hit the public court docket, albeit with heavy redactions. While sparse, the unredacted portions of the affidavit nonetheless proved significant, especially when read in conjunction with the previously unsealed search warrant and the leaks to the compliant media cartel.

      “The government is conducting a criminal investigation concerning the improper removal and storage of classified information in unauthorized spaces, as well as the unlawful concealment or removal of government records,” the affidavit opened, before noting that “the investigation began as a result of a referral the United States National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) sent to the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) on February 9, 2022.”

      The affidavit then summarized the background of the NARA referral, explaining that “on February 9, 2022, the Special Agent in Charge of NARA’s Office of Inspector General sent a referral via email to the DOJ.” The referral explained that the NARA’s White House Liaison Division director had reviewed 15 boxes NARA had retrieved from Mar-a-Lago including “newspapers, magazines, printed news articles, photos, miscellaneous print-outs, notes, presidential correspondence, personal and post-presidential records, and ‘a lot of classified records.’” “Of most significant,” the search warrant affidavit explained, was that “highly classified records were unfoldered, intermixed with other records, and otherwise unproperly [sic] identified.”

      While the next nearly eight pages of the search warrant affidavit remained redacted, the disclosures that followed exposed the affidavit’s focus on “classified records” as a sham. “On or about May 6, 2021, NARA made a request for the missing PRA records and continued to make requests until approximately late December 2021 when NARA was informed twelve boxes were found and ready for retrieval at the [Mar-a-Lago],” the affidavit continued, with the abbreviation “PRA” previously noted to stand for the Presidential Records Act.

      As I explained previously, to fully comprehend the Biden administration’s weaponizing of the DOJ and FBI, it is necessary to understand the Presidential Records Act, the concept of “presidential records,” and the NARA’s role, and the search warrant affidavit’s references to those concepts confirm that point. In short:

      “The Presidential Records Act provides that documents created or received by the president or his immediate staff, such as memos, letters, notes, emails, and other written communications, related to a president’s official duties, constitute ‘presidential records’ and must be preserved. The act further declares that the United States shall retain complete ownership, possession, and control of Presidential records.’ And at the conclusion of a president’s term in office, the ‘Archivist of the United States’ ‘assumes responsibility for the custody, control, and preservation of, and access to, the Presidential records.’”

      The Presidential Records Act, however, expressly excludes specific documents from the definition of “presidential records,” including any documentary materials that are “official records of an agency,” “personal records,” or “extra copies of documents produced only for convenience of reference, when such copies are clearly so identified.” The federal statute further defines “personal records” as “diaries, journals, or personal notes ‘not prepared or utilized for, or circulated or communicated in the course of, transacting Government business’” or “materials relating to private political associations” or “relating exclusively to the President’s own election to the office of the Presidency.”

      The public (understandably) may wish to sidestep the minutia of the mandates of the Presidential Records Act, but three top-line takeaways prove imperative to understanding the scandal of the Mar-a-Lago search. First, the Presidential Records Act is not a criminal statute, and violations of that federal law do not constitute a crime. Second, the Presidential Records Act does not reach broad swathes of documents retained by a former president, including “official records of an agency,” “personal records,” and convenience copies of presidential records. And third, the courts have refused to question a former president’s conclusion that a record constitutes a “personal record” and not a “presidential record.”

      Two additional legal points require expansion for the populace to fully grasp the outrageous overreach of the DOJ, which was further exposed in the partially unsealed affidavit. The first legal principle of note concerns a president’s power to declassify documents. As Trump’s attorney stressed in a May 2022 letter to the DOJ, which the government released along with the redacted version of the search warrant affidavit, “a president has absolute authority to declassify documents.”

      “Under the U.S. Constitution, the President is vested with the highest level of authority when it comes to the classification and declassification of documents,” Trump’s lawyer Evan Corcoran explained in his correspondence with the DOJ. Citing both the Constitution and Navy v. Egan, 484 U.S. 518, 527 (1988), wherein the United States Supreme Court wrote, “the President’s authority to classify and control access to information bearing on national security … flows primarily from this constitutional investment of power in the President and exists quite apart from any explicit congressional grant,” Corcoran countered the DOJ’s attempt to frame NARA’s discovery of documents marked “classified” as warranting a criminal investigation.

      Trump’s lawyer stressed a second significant legal principle in the same letter, writing that “presidential actions involving classified documents are not subject to criminal sanction.” Then, after noting that “any attempt to impose criminal liability on a President or former President that involves his actions with respect to documents marked classified would implicate grave constitutional separation-of-powers issues,” Corcoran wrote: “Beyond that, the primary criminal statute that governs the unauthorized removal and retention of classified documents or material does not apply to the President.” 

      The attorney for the former president then quoted the statute that criminalizes the removal, possession, or retention of classified materials before stressing that “an element of this offense, which the government must prove beyond a reasonable doubt, is that the accused is ‘an officer, employee, contractor, or consultant of the United States.’” “The President is none of these,” Trump’s attorney continued, before concluding, “thus, the statute does not apply to acts by a President.”

      Corcoran closed his letter by reminding the DOJ of its obligation “to be candid in representations made to judges,” and requested that a copy of the lawyer’s letter be provided “to any judicial officer who is asked to rule on any motion pertaining to this investigation, or on any application made in connection with any investigative request concerning this investigation,” as well as “any grand jury considering evidence in connection with this matter, or any grand jury asked to issue a subpoena for testimony or documents in connection with this matter.” 

      The search warrant affidavit referenced Corcoran’s letter and provided a copy to Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart, who issued the search warrant. The DOJ also informed Reinhart of a Breitbart News article from May 5, 2022, which states that a former Trump administration official, Kash Patel, had characterized as “misleading” reports that documents retrieved by NARA included classified material; Patel alleged that the reporting was misleading because Trump had declassified the materials at issue.

      The DOJ informed Reinhart of the above details and thus, in essence, that the government lacked probable cause to search Mar-a-Lago based on a violation of the statute governing the mishandling of classified documents. But what Trump’s legal team did not foresee, and what the search warrant affidavit revealed, was that the DOJ would twist the facts to find other crimes to justify the targeting of Trump. 

      The introductory section of the affidavit summarized three other legal theories to justify the search, stating first that “the FBI’s investigation has established that documents bearing classification markings, which appear to contain National Defense Information (NDI), were among the materials” contained in the 15 boxes retrieved by the NARA. Second, the affidavit maintained that there was “probable cause to believe that additional documents that contain classified NDI or that are Presidential records subject to record retention requirements currently remain at the Mar-a-Lago.” And third, the affidavit claimed there was “also probable cause to believe that evidence of obstruction will be found at” Mar-a-Lago. Those legal theories track the three statutes cited by the DOJ to justify the search, namely 18 U.S.C. §§ 793(e), 1519, and 2071. 

      As I previously explained, none of those criminal code provisions require material to be classified for there to be criminal liability. Rather, Section 793(e), also called the Espionage Act, makes it a crime for a person “having unauthorized possession of, access to, or control over” “national defense information” to “willfully” share that information with a “person not entitled to receive it” or to “willfully retain” the national defense information and fail to deliver it to an employee of the United States “entitled to receive it,” if “the possessor has reason to believe [it] could be used to the injury of the United States or to the advantage of any foreign nation.” 

      The unredacted portions of the search warrant affidavit reveal how the DOJ manipulated the facts to fit within the Espionage Act. First, for the Espionage Act to apply, the material must qualify as “national defense information.” To establish probable cause that “national defense information” remained at Mar-a-Lago, the affidavit noted that a review by FBI agents of the 15 boxes retrieved by NARA “identified documents with classification markings in fourteen of the fifteen boxes.” The FBI agent who signed the search warrant affidavit then attested that based on his “training and experience,” he “knows that documents classified at these levels typically contain NDI” or “national defense information.”

      What the DOJ did here, then, was this: It highlighted that the documents retrieved by the NARA contained “classification markings” and then used the FBI agent’s expertise to establish that documents that receive a classification marking typically include “national defense information.” That Trump declassified (or may have declassified) the documents is irrelevant under this analysis because the fact that they were ever classified would mean they likely qualified as “national defense information.” 

      The DOJ subtly confirmed this point by dropping a footnote that explains that “§ 793(e) does not use the term ‘classified information,’ but rather criminalizes the unlawful retention of ‘information relating to the national defense.’” The footnote continues by noting that Section 793(e) does not define “information related to the national defense,” but adds that courts have construed national defense information “broadly.” 

      In other words, the DOJ bent the Espionage Act to fit the facts of Trump’s possession of documents at Mar-a-Lago. The Biden administration couldn’t target Trump for mishandling classified material both because he declassified it and because the statute that criminalizes such mishandling doesn’t reach a president or a former president. So instead, they tried to find a crime to get the man. 

      Even then, there is a second problem with the DOJ’s reliance on the Espionage Act: An Espionage Act violation only occurs if the person has “unauthorized possession of, access to, or control over,” the national defense information. But how was Trump’s possession “unauthorized”?

      From the unredacted portions of the affidavit, it appears the DOJ maintained that Trump’s possession of the national defense information was “unauthorized” because the documents were “presidential records” wrongly retained by Trump. But “presidential records” do not include agency records, personal records, or convenience copies, and the documents bearing the classification markings likely originated from intelligence community agencies and/or were hard copies printed for convenience, meaning Trump’s possession of those documents would not be “unauthorized” under the Presidential Records Act. 

      For the same reason, the DOJ’s reliance on Section 2017, which criminalizes the removal, destruction, or concealing of government records, falters because that criminal provision protects the government’s access to its own records, and merely possessing copies of government records is not enough to constitute a crime. Yet from the search warrant affidavit and the search warrant, it appears the government sought to recover from Trump hard copies of information it already had within its possession, either through various agencies or the electronic copies maintained by the relevant authorities. And it is a stretch for the government to rely on Section 2017 to criminalize Trump’s possession of the records.

      Again, what we are seeing is a bending and twisting of the law to find a crime on which to launch the Mar-a-Lago raid. Mishandling of classified materials wouldn’t work, and Trump’s attorney made sure the DOJ knew that, so the creative team working under Attorney General Merrick Garland combed the federal code and found two plausible statutes on which to rely, adding a claim of obstruction of justice to round out the search warrant affidavit. While it is unclear from the affidavit the basis for the government’s obstruction of justice allegation, the affidavit establishes that the other criminal provisions relied upon representing illicit maneuvering to manufacture a crime for the man who was their political enemy.

      Americans may shrug when prosecutors use pretext to target known drug dealers or human traffickers, but manipulating the criminal code to find a basis to search the home of a former president and a political enemy represents an appalling weaponization of the criminal justice system. And while large portions of the affidavit remain under seal, the country has seen enough to know that is precisely what the Biden administration did to get Trump.


      Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

      Today’s TWO Politically INCORRECT Cartoons by A.F. Branco


      A.F. Branco Cartoon – Shipwreck

      A.F. BRANCO | on August 28, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-shipwreck/

      The Teachers Union wants to lay off white teachers before black no matter their seniority in Minnesota.

      Teachers Union is  Racist
      Political cartoon by A.F. Branco 2022.

      A.F. Branco Cartoon – Changing Of The Guard

      A.F. BRANCO | on August 29, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-changing-of-the-guard-4/

      Our leadership is changing Washington D.C. and the country into a radical far-left Banana-style republic.

      Bannana Republic FBI, DOJ, IRS
      Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022

      DONATE to A.F.Branco Cartoons – Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

      A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

      DOJ’s Highly Redacted Trump Affidavit Details Reasons For Raid


      By SHELBY TALCOTT, SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT | August 26, 202212:31 PM ET

      Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/08/26/highly-redacted-affidavit-donald-trump-mar-a-lago-raid-released/

      FILE PHOTO: Donald Trump departs Trump Tower two days after FBI agents raided his Mar-a-Lago Palm Beach home, in New York City, New York, U.S., August 10, 2022. REUTERS/David 'Dee' Delgado//File Photo
      REUTERS/David ‘Dee’ Delgado//File Photo

      The Department of Justice’s (DOJ) redacted affidavit relating to the raid on former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home was released on Friday. The document shows that the DOJ pointed to a number of classified materials already obtained from Trump’s home as reason for the August search warrant request.

      Though much of the affidavit was redacted, unsealed portions of it revealed that the latest search came after the FBI reviewed 15 boxes that Trump turned over to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) in January, sparking further concern about other potential documents. Fourteen of these boxes had classification markings,” according to the affidavit.

      The 14 boxes contained 184 documents – 25 of the documents had “top secret” markings, 92 were labeled “secret” and 67 had a “confidential” warning, according to the affidavit.

      The affidavit also notes that the DOJ requested Trump secure the storage room at Mar-a-Lago, pointing out that the department sent a letter to “FPOTUS COUNSEL 1” on June 8, 2022. This letter “reiterated that the PREMISES are not authorized to store classified information and requested the preservation of the STORAGE ROOM and boxes that had been moved from the White House to the PREMISES.”

      As I previously indicated to you, Mar-a-Lago does not include a secure location authorized for the storage of classified information,” the letter reads, according to the affidavit. “As such, it appears that since the time classified documents [redacted] were removed from the secure facilities at the White House and moved to Mar-a-Lago on or around January 20, 2021, they have not been handled in an appropriate manner or stored in au appropriate location. Accordingly, we ask that the room at Mar-a-Lago where the documents had been stored be secured and that all of the boxes that were moved from the White House to Mar-a-Lago (along with any other items in that room) be preserved in that room in their current condition until farther notice.”

      FILE PHOTO: An aerial view of former U.S. President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago home after Trump said that FBI agents raided it, in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S. August 15, 2022. REUTERS/Marco Bello/File Photo

      FILE PHOTO: An aerial view of former U.S. President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home after Trump said that FBI agents raided it, in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S. August 15, 2022. REUTERS/Marco Bello/File Photo

      Multiple media organizations, including CNN and The New York Times, pushed for the affidavit – which would shed light on the reasoning behind the unprecedented raid – to be released because of intense public interest and the unparalleled nature of the situation. Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart – who also signed off on the search warrant used in the FBI’s August 8 raid – ordered the DOJ to submit redactions to the affidavit after formally rejecting the department’s push to keep the document private. Reinhart approved the redactions on Thursday and noted the affidavit would be released by noon on Friday.

      In the wake of the FBI’s search, Trump slammed the incident as being politically motivated. He encouraged the “immediate release of documents” relating to the search of his Florida home and, on August 22, filed a lawsuit asking for a “special master” to be appointed to independently oversee the review of various materials that had been taken. (RELATED: FBI Agents Remove 11 Sets Of Classified Documents From Mar-a-Lago)

      The DOJ on Friday also released a document detailing its proposed redactions to the affidavit and reasons for the redactions – though notably the reasons for keeping portions of the affidavit under wraps were also redacted. In this document, the DOJ noted that the redactions are an effort to protect a “significant number of civilian witnesses.”

      Congressional Leaders Request Access To Documents FBI Seized from Mar-A-Lago: REPORT


      By MICHAEL GINSBERG, CONGRESSIONAL REPORTER | August 22, 2022

      Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/08/22/gang-eight-request-access-documents-fbi-mar-a-lago-seize-donald-trump-merrick-garland/

      pelosi mccarthy
      (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

      A group of top lawmakers in the Senate and the House of Representatives is reportedly requesting access to the documents Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) officials seized from Mar-a-Lago.

      The Gang of Eight, which includes Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Mark Warner, Senate Intelligence Committee ranking member Marco Rubio, House Intelligence Committee chairman Adam Schiff, and House Intelligence Committee ranking member Mike Turner, made the request to Biden administration officials, Politico reported Monday. Former President Donald Trump and his allies have argued that he unilaterally declassified the documents, which Trump held the authority to do.

      While Democrats have almost uniformly declined to aggressively weigh in on the raid, Republicans have been split. While some officials, such as Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Colorado Rep. Lauren Boebert, have called for Congress to defund the FBI, others, like former Vice President Mike Pence and South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, have urged caution while calling for the Biden administration to make more information publicly available.

      Scoop — the Gang of 8 wants in on the documents seized from Mar-a-Lagohttps://t.co/nhjXBzdccX

      — Andrew Desiderio (@AndrewDesiderio) August 22, 2022

      A spokesperson for Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller’s request for comment on the matter. (RELATED: Republicans Gear Up For Oversight Battle Over FBI’s Raid Of Mar-A-Lago)

      Attorney General Merrick Garland confirmed in a press conference three days after the raid that he personally approved the request to seek a warrant. District Court Judge Bruce Reinhart approved releasing the search warrant top sheet, although the Department of Justice is fighting to withhold the warrant affidavit. The latter document likely includes testimony from FBI agents, as well as information about witnesses.

      The warrant top sheet shows that the search is related to alleged violations of the Espionage Act, as well as obstruction of justice. Agents seized eleven sets of classified documents from Mar-a-Lago. They also took 20 boxes of binders of photographs, a handwritten note, an executive grant of clemency for Roger Stone, and information about the President of France.

      Rubio and Warner issued a similar request to Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines shortly after the raid, as did Schiff and House Oversight Committee chairwoman Carolyn Maloney.

      Think The FBI Deserves the Benefit of the Doubt? This Laundry List of Corruption Should Make You Think Again


      BY: TRISTAN JUSTICE | AUGUST 19, 2022

      Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/08/19/think-the-fbi-deserves-the-benefit-of-the-doubt-this-laundry-list-of-corruption-should-make-you-think-again/

      FBI Director James Comey with Mueller and Obama

      Author Tristan Justice profile

      TRISTAN JUSTICE

      VISIT ON TWITTER@JUSTICETRISTAN

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      Can the FBI be trusted? A Federalist analysis of agency lies over the last decade is an unequivocal no.

      FISA Warrants

      In the summer of 2016, FBI bureaucrats launched a deep-state operation, known as Crossfire Hurricane, to thwart then-candidate Trump’s presidential ambitions. It began by targeting Trump campaign foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos and quickly branched out as bureaucrats expanded their surveillance. The spy agency used the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) as a legal pretext to investigate and spy on Papadopoulos, in addition to former White House national security adviser Michael Flynn, former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort, and former Trump adviser Carter Page. Several were interviewed by undercover FBI informant Stefan Halper, whose own investigation would prove a bust.

      According to a declassified transcript between Papadopoulos and a Crossfire Hurricane confidential human source (CHS), Papadopoulos repeatedly denied the Trump campaign was working with Russian-backed entities to capture the 2016 election. The FBI, however, wrote off Papadopoulos’s recorded answers as rehearsed and omitted his denials of campaign collusion with overseas actors in FISA court warrant applications and renewals. These were two of the 17 “significant inaccuracies and omissions” identified in the Department of Justice (DOJ) inspector general’s blockbuster report on the investigation in December 2019.

      Papadopoulos, who pled guilty to making a false statement to the FBI in a perjury trap, was far from the only individual to face political persecution from the federal government’s dystopian investigation.

      Not one of the four FISA warrants obtained by the FBI was legally justified, according to DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s report. In fact, at least two of the warrant applications to spy on Page were declared illegal by a federal judge. Following Horowitz’s blistering report outlining FBI misconduct throughout the entire operation, another federal judge declared that agency malfeasance “calls into question whether information contained in other FBI applications is reliable.”

      Subsequent reporting revealed gross abuses of power within the FBI to prosecute political opponents. According to Horowitz, the FBI’s FISA warrants “relied entirely” on DNC-funded opposition research compiled by former British intelligence official Christopher Steele known as the “Steele dossier.” The dossier, which outlined supposed Trump-Russia collusion and has since been thoroughly debunked, included salacious allegations such as supposed “pee tapes” featuring Trump engaging in golden showers with Russian prostitutes at a Moscow hotel.

      The FBI knew the dossier lacked credibility as early as January 2017 and knew Steele’s material itself contained Russian disinformation. Desperate to continue their deep-state operation, however, officials lied to the FISA court about Steele’s credibility and hid incriminating info related to the former British intelligence official who was later fired over leaks to the press. An 18th omission, overlooked by the inspector general’s report but documented by Federalist Senior Legal Correspondent Margot Cleveland, was that Steele’s sources did not include the ones he developed as a British official.

      Even after Steele’s termination as a reliable source, DOJ attorney Bruce Ohr continued to feed information from Steele to the FBI over the course of its investigation. Steele met with Ohr 12 times after the former’s tenure ended as a confidential human source for the bureau, according to the inspector general. Ohr also promoted his wife’s opposition research to FBI investigators and did not disclose she was paid by Fusion GPS, the DNC-contracted firm that commissioned the Steele dossier.

      The FBI never told the FISA court that the Trump dossier written by a source who was fired for lying, did not undergo independent verification, and was funded by Hillary Clinton and the DNC.

      Despite the overt abuse of the nation’s surveillance apparatus to spy on political opponents, only one FBI official has faced criminal conviction for his role in the probe. In January last year, former FBI attorney Kevin Clinesmith was sentenced to just 12 months probation after pleading guilty to fabricating evidence to obtain a FISA warrant. By December, Clinesmith was re-admitted to the D.C. Bar Association in good standing.

      Steele’s primary sub-source, Igor Danchenko, was indicted in November on five counts of making false statements to the FBI. In May, a D.C. jury acquitted former Clinton campaign attorney Michael Sussmann on charges of lying to the FBI when submitting supposed evidence of Trump-Russian collusion to federal investigators.

      Misleading Congress

      Following the collapse of the grand Russia-collusion hoax, lawmakers on Capitol Hill began demanding answers about FBI misconduct. Former FBI Director James Comey lied to Congress, claiming the bureau was just investigating four individuals, not the Trump campaign, in a dubious spin.

      “Late July of 2016, the FBI did, in fact, open a counterintelligence investigation into, is it fair to say the Trump campaign or Donald Trump himself?” asked then-Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., in a 2018 hearing.

      “It’s not fair to say either of those things, in my recollection,” Comey said. “We opened investigations on four Americans to see if there was any connection between those four Americans and the Russian interference efforts. And those four Americans did not include the candidate.”

      Horowitz also contradicted the FBI in a December 2019 hearing on the release of his report documenting FISA abuses. In September 2017, the FBI told Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, that the bureau gave the Trump campaign a defensive briefing about Russian interference in the 2016 race.

      “In August of 2016 the FBI provided a counterintelligence defensive briefing to then candidate Donald Trump and other senior campaign officials,” wrote FBI Assistant Director of Congressional Affairs Gregory Brower in response to a letter from Grassley. “This defensive briefing was conducted by an experienced FBI counterintelligence agent and focused on the broad range of threats posed by foreign intelligence entities.”

      Horowitz testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee that there was no briefing given.

      Misleading DOJ Leaders

      Not only was Congress led astray as FBI officials conducted a rogue operation to defend the incumbent regime, but so was senior leadership in President Trump’s DOJ.

      Handwritten notes revealed in the Sussmann trial exposed how FBI agents sought to cover up malicious misconduct, wherein DOJ leaders tasked with FBI oversight were misled about the investigation’s progress. The notes show FBI agent Peter Strzok wrongly told DOJ supervisors the surveillance warrant on Page had been “fruitful.” Strzok also concealed knowledge that Steele’s sources were not credible and claimed instead that the dossier was “CROWN reporting” from MI6, the CIA’s British counterpart. The FBI said the dossier was being used to examine the RNC and Trump campaign’s effort to soften the GOP platform on NATO and Crimea for Russian energy stocks, but the document made no mention of NATO or Crimea.

      Strzok also said Trump’s 2016 joke about Russia uncovering Clinton’s 30,000 deleted emails triggered Crossfire Hurricane, with an Australian diplomat tipping off the government about Papadopoulos at the American embassy in London. The tip that Papdopoulos was coordinating collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, however, came before Trump made the joke.

      Strzok is the same agent whose text messages show he conspired with his mistress and FBI colleague, attorney Lisa Page. Strzok, a lead investigator for Crossfire Hurricane, assured Page of a mysterious “insurance policy” in place if Trump were to be elected, likely in reference to the agency’s inside operations. Page, according to the DOJ inspector general’s 2019 report, told colleagues to go easy on investigating Clinton because “she might be our next president.”

      When Page fretted that Trump might actually win the 2016 contest, Strzok assured his romantic partner, “we’ll stop it.”

      Misleading Trump

      Comey thought the Crossfire Hurricane investigation was important enough to brief outgoing President Barack Obama on the probe but kept Trump in the dark. In fact, Comey later confirmed that he told Trump three times the president was not being investigated and refused to tell him Clinton funded the dossier.

      Michael Flynn

      In June 2020, a federal judge ordered that all charges be dropped against Flynn, whom Trump subsequently pardoned in the waning days of his administration. Prior to his exoneration, Flynn was facing heavy fines and prison time for making false statements to federal officials in another perjury trap orchestrated by Comey, who bragged about the setup in the first week of the Trump White House.

      According to Special Counsel Robert Mueller, Flynn lied to a pair of FBI agents about conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak as the incoming national security adviser. Flynn, prosecutors claimed, spoke with Kislyak about financial sanctions against Russian individuals after the 2016 election and then lied about it during an interview with Comey’s agents. Sending a pair of agents to question a senior White House official in the Situation Room, Comey said at a 2018 conference, was “something I probably wouldn’t have done or even gotten away with in a more organized investigation, a more organized administration.”

      “We placed a call to Flynn and said, ‘Hey, we’re sending a couple guys over, hope you’ll talk to them.’ He said ‘sure,’” Comey explained at the 92nd Street Y conference. “Nobody else was there, they interviewed him in a conference room at the White House situation room, and he lied to them.”

      Flynn initially pled guilty to making false statements to the FBI before firing his attorneys and hiring new representation to withdraw his guilty plea. His reversal followed the release of declassified transcripts, which revealed Flynn never spoke with Kislyak about sanctions. The two only discussed expulsions of Russian individuals under a different process. Handwritten notes from the FBI agents also revealed the sole purpose of their questioning was “to get him to lie so we can prosecute him or get him fired.” A bizarre 2017 inauguration day email by Susan Rice to herself also revealed Comey knew there was no legitimate reason to question Flynn.

      Andrew McCabe

      Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe was fired from his top role at the bureau for lying to the agency inspector general four times over multiple abuses during his tenure in senior leadership. Those abuses included efforts to set up former White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus for obstruction charges, the sabotage of an investigation into Clinton emails on Anthony Weiner’s laptop before the 2016 election, and failure to report conflicts of interest. While running for a Virginia state Senate seat in 2015, McCabe’s wife accepted a political donation from a close Clinton ally as her husband was tasked with investigating the former secretary of state.

      A 2018 DOJ inspector general report blasted McCabe as a serial leaker who lied about it. That same year, a letter from Grassley shined a spotlight on McCabe’s purchase of a $70,000 table on taxpayers’ dime that the agency sought to cover up.

      Clinton Emails

      The FBI repeatedly told journalists there was no evidence that a foreign power had reviewed Clinton’s emails that she improperly handled on a private server. According to an inspector general report in 2018, however, texts show they almost certainly did, “at least one of them classified,” as Federalist Senior Editor David Harsanyi wrote.

      “It is more accurate to say,” read a text from Strzok, “that we know foreign actors obtained access to some of her emails (including at least one Secret one) via compromises of the private email accounts of some of her staffers.”

      Weiner Laptop

      In 2018, Comey told lawmakers over the course of the investigation into Clinton’s emails that agency officials thoroughly reviewed the laptop belonging to Clinton aide Huma Abedin and her now-ex husband Anthony Weiner. The FBI was able to accomplish such a feat within a short timeframe “thanks to the wizardry of our technology” enabling agents who worked “night after night after night” to comb through the remaining material before the 2016 election.

      “But virtually none of his account was true,” explained RealClearInvestigations’ Paul Sperry.

      In fact, a technical glitch prevented FBI technicians from accurately comparing the new emails with the old emails. Only 3,077 of the 694,000 emails were directly reviewed for classified or incriminating information. Three FBI officials completed that work in a single 12-hour spurt the day before Comey again cleared Clinton of criminal charges.

      Roger Stone

      In 2019, former Trump associate Roger Stone was raided by the FBI after being indicted by Mueller. A CNN camera crew happened to be the only network present at Stone’s Fort Lauderdale home before the sunrise raid, suggesting the friendly press had been tipped off in advance. The FBI, however, refused to comply with a Federalist open records request for any and all emails to or from CNN on the day of the raid.

      Jan. 6 Capitol Riot

      The Jan. 6 saga has become the sequel in Democrats’ efforts to indict Trump, before FBI agents hatched a plot to go after the former president over supposed espionage.

      In October, the bureau refused to offer House Republicans conducting their own independent investigation of the Capitol riot the same material given to congressional Democrats. The FBI’s refusal, the agency claimed, was because officials were already working with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s Select Committee on Jan. 6. Pelosi’s committee, however, was established in violation of House rules. Rep. Jim Banks, R-Ind., the minority appointment as ranking member, is entitled to the documents presented to Democrats.

      Senior FBI officials have also refused lawmakers’ questions about how many informants were present at the Capitol on Jan. 6 and stonewalled inquiries surrounding Ray Epps, the mysterious figure who disappeared from the most-wanted list after he encouraged rioters to swarm the Capitol.

      At an Aug. 4 Senate hearing, FBI Director Christopher Wray sought to downplay agency negligence, claiming “we did not have any credible intelligence that pointed to thousands of people breaching the Capitol.” But according to Newsweek, the agency deployed commandos with “shoot to kill authority,” and even Capitol Hill parking attendants knew there were going to be mass protests. The FBI has also been less than forthcoming about a pair of pipe bombs planted at the RNC and DNC headquarters.

      At the same time, the FBI has embarked on a nationwide manhunt, to incarcerating demonstrators who have been declared such a threat to the republic over trespassing that they’ve been denied a fair and speedy trial and held in detention for more than 18 months.

      Julian Khater, one of two accused of assaulting a Capitol Police officer with pepper spray and whose case has been documented by Julie Kelly at American Greatness, appears to have been outright coerced into making an unconstitutional confession. Khater was detained in March 2021 and has remained in federal custody ever since after intense interrogation without an attorney present.

      Kamala Harris on Jan. 6

      The presence of Vice President Mike Pence and then-Sen. Kamala Harris at the U.S. Capitol has been the basis for nearly 800 people being charged with at least one count of violating 18 U.S. Code, section 1752, according to Kelly, which indicates that any building or complex hosting the vice president is a restricted area and therefore closed to the public.

      “But the Justice Department recently was forced to admit that Harris was not in the building for most of the day on January 6,” Kelly reported, highlighting that Harris, at the time, remained a U.S. senator, not vice president. In the late morning, Harris was moved to the DNC headquarters where a pipe bomb had supposedly been planted.

      “Prosecutors have begun amending language in court filings to reflect the fact Harris was not inside the Capitol despite making the assertion in thousands of charging documents,” Kelly wrote.

      March 4, 2021

      The FBI released a joint memo with the Department of Homeland Security warning that “domestic extremists” were preparing to launch an insurrection by overwhelming the Capitol and removing Democratic lawmakers “on or about the 4th of March.”

      Nothing happened.

      Hunter Biden Suppression

      In July, Grassley’s office published a blockbuster whistleblower report wherein senior agency officials alleged that the bureau is actively trying to sabotage Trump and provide cover for President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter.

      “Multiple FBI whistleblowers, including those in senior positions,” Grassley’s office wrote in a press release, “are raising the alarm about tampering by senior FBI and Justice Department officials in politically sensitive investigations ranging from election and campaign finance probes across multiple election cycles.”

      Washington Field Office Assistant Special Agent in Charge Timothy Thibault and Director of Election Crimes Branch Richard Pilger, the whistleblowers alleged, coordinated to amplify defamatory information against Trump while giving cover to Hunter Biden, dismissing Biden intelligence as disinformation.

      The agency reportedly knew of Hunter Biden’s abandoned laptop full of incriminating information on the first family as early as 2019, and Grassley’s whistleblower report highlights how officials may have undermined DOJ investigations into Hunter Biden’s finances in Delaware and Pittsburgh. In March, FBI Assistant Director of the Cyber Division Bryan Vorndran told lawmakers he did not know the whereabouts of Hunter Biden’s laptop.

      Gretchen Whitmer Plot

      In October 2020, the FBI revealed that a plot to kidnap Michigan Democrat Gov. Gretchen Whitmer had been heroically foiled by federal law enforcement. A group of far-right militiamen, the story goes, conspired to kidnap the governor and try her as a “tyrant” in Wisconsin. In July last year, however, BuzzFeed revealed that at least 12 people involved were FBI informants orchestrating another entrapment.

      “The problem with the case is that it appears the FBI, through informants and undercover agents, hatched the kidnapping plotserved in the key leadership positions of the militia group, trained the militia members in military tactics, actively recruited participantsand funded much of the militia’s activities,” reported former CIA Paramilitary Operations Officer Max Morton. “Then, when various members of the Watchman militia became uncomfortable with the kidnapping plot, with several quitting, the FBI’s primary informant pushed the plot along, eventually becoming the militia group’s leader.”

      In April, a jury refused to convict four of the 14 defendants charged. Two were found not guilty, another two concluded the trial with no verdict, and another two took plea deals.

      Ralph Northam Plot

      Dan Chappel, the primary informant in the Whitmer kidnapping conspiracy, targeted a senior disabled veteran named Frank Butler using the same formula to go after then-Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, another Democrat.

      “Just as in the Whitmer plot, Chappel lured Frank Butler into attempting to build an explosive device,” Kelly explained in American Greatness. “Chappel also invited Butler to a field training exercise in Wisconsin during the last weekend in October, an excursion attended by some defendants in the Whitmer caper.”

      Unlike the FBI’s victims in the Whitmer plot, however, Butler did not participate and has not been charged with any crime.

      Sen. Ted Stevens’ Conviction

      Former Sen. Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, became the victim of FBI corruption in 2008 when forced to defend himself on charges of false statements to federal officials. Stevens lost his seat as the scandal played out, only to be later exonerated when a judge conducting an independent investigation concluded that prosecutors inappropriately hid evidence.

      Prosecutors indicted Stevens on charges that he had concealed that he did not pay full value for renovations on an Alaskan cabin less than 100 days out from the 2008 election.

      “In fact, Ted Stevens and his wife had paid more than $160,000 for renovations that independent appraisers valued at less than $125,000 at the time,” Roll Call reported.

      Prosecutors, however, secured a conviction by hiding evidence that incriminated their own witnesses, one of whom came up with testimony right before trial, with inconsistent statements concealed from the defense, according to the D.C. paper.

      Likewise, the government concealed evidence that its star witness had suborned perjury from an underage prostitute with whom the star witness had an illegal sexual relationship. And the government concealed evidence that another witness — whom the government flew back to Alaska away from the Washington, D.C., trial after their mock cross-examination of him went poorly — had told the senator that the bills he received and promptly paid included all of the work that was done. Government prosecutors mocked Stevens when he explained that on the stand — all the while knowing that they had a witness who would have supported him, but whom they had removed from the trial.

      Rep. Jeff Fortenberry’s Conviction

      Former Rep. Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb., was sentenced to two years of probation with a $25,000 fine and 320 hours of community service in March after a Los Angeles jury convicted him of lying to the federal government after he was entrapped by the FBI.

      The saga began in 2019 when a pair of FBI agents showed up at Fortenberry’s Nebraska home ostensibly over a national security issue, not a criminal investigation. Prosecutors ultimately convicted Fortenberry for scheming to conceal material facts to federal officials and two false statements to the FBI.

      One false statement was attributed to Forteberry not recognizing a person whose 10-year-old picture was presented to him by agents on their trip to his Nebraska residence. In July 2019, the FBI lied to Fortenberry and his attorney, Gowdy, claiming Fortenberry was not under federal investigation when he was. Fortenberry resigned from the House during his ninth term following conviction.

      Pulse Nightclub Shooting

      In June 2016, a 29-year-old gunman named Omar Mateen stormed the gay Orlando nightclub Pulse, killing 49 and injuring 53 more in the name of Islamic terrorists killed in Iraq and Syria. Mateen’s father, Seddique, was an FBI informant, whom documents published by The Intercept suggest convinced the bureau to stop investigating his son.

      The bureau turned instead to charging Mateen’s widow, Noor Salman, with material support and obstruction of justice. Prosecutors sought to conceal the father’s status as an FBI informant, according to the Intercept, in pursuit of Salman’s conviction.

      “Seddique Mateen has not faced criminal charges despite a tip to the FBI that he raised money for terrorism in Pakistan, and an ongoing investigation into money transfers he allegedly made to Turkey and Afghanistan,” the Intercept reported. “Omar Mateen was researching flights to Turkey at the same time that his father was sending payments there, according to defense lawyers’ summary of FBI evidence.” Salmon was apparently unaware of their possible plans to travel to either country.

      Meanwhile, the New York Times reported on Salmon’s 2018 trial:

      Testimony from an F.B.I. agent revealed that prosecutors knew early on, but did not reveal, that one of their crucial initial pieces of evidence — that Ms. Salman had admitted driving by the nightclub with her husband in the days before the attack — most likely did not happen.

      Salmon was ultimately acquitted after a 12-hour jury deliberation.

      Texas Synagogue Attack

      On Jan. 15, 44-year-old Malik Faisal Akram took hostages in a Texas synagogue near Dallas and demanded the release of Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani national also known as “Lady Al Qaeda” serving an 86-year sentence for assault and attempted murder of federal agents and military personnel.

      Matthew J. DeSarno, the FBI’s special agent in charge of the Dallas field office, said the attack on a synagogue had nothing to do with targeting Jews.

      “We do believe from our engagement with this subject that he was singularly focused on one issue, and it was not specifically related to the Jewish community,” DeSarno said at a press conference.

      But as Chuck DeVore of the Texas Public Policy Foundation reported, Akram “was heard to say via the live stream that operated from the synagogue for much of the incident that he chose it because he thought it was the closest assemblage of Jews to the federal facility holding Siddiqui.”

      “There are about 1,000 churches in the Fort Worth area within a half-hour drive of Siddiqui’s place of incarceration, compared to seven Jewish centers of worship,” DeVore wrote. “But sure, Special Agent DeSarno, the terrorism was ‘not specifically threatening to the Jewish community.’”

      Congressional Baseball Shooter

      The FBI designated the death of a shooter who attempted to gun down Republican lawmakers at a 2017 congressional baseball practice as motivated by a desire to commit “suicide by cop.” Last year, the bureau doubled down on the designation.

      “It’s fair to say the shooter was motivated by a desire to commit an attack on members of Congress and then knowing by doing so he would likely be killed in the process,” Jill Sanborn, the executive assistant director of the FBI, told the House Appropriations subcommittee.

      “The FBI still doesn’t know exactly what the shooter was up to,” McCabe, now a CNN contributor, said last summer. “They never really uncovered the sort of detailed evidence that laid out a specific plot or an objective.”

      On the contrary, the 66-year-old shooter who almost killed House GOP Whip Steve Scalise left behind a long record of extremist social media posts dripping with contempt for Republicans, even branding them as the “Taliban of the USA” on Facebook. The FBI also found a list of six congressmen in a rented Virginia storage locker but refused to call it a “hit list.”

      Inflating Extremism Cases

      Whistleblowers claim the FBI is inflating the number of “domestic violent extremism” cases to fit President Biden’s overarching narrative that home-grown extremism is the nation’s worst national security threat.

      “From recent protected disclosures, we have learned that FBI officials are pressuring agents to reclassify cases as ‘domestic violent extremism’ even if the cases do not meet the criteria for such a classification,” Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, wrote in July, detailing whistleblower allegations in a letter to Wray. “Given the narrative pushed by the Biden Administration that domestic violent extremism is the ‘greatest threat’ facing our country, the revelation that the FBI may be artificially padding domestic terrorism data is scandalous.”

      Ignoring Larry Nassar Abuse

      The FBI turned a blind eye as former USA gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar abused dozens of young female athletes. According to the DOJ inspector general last year, “senior officials in the FBI Indianapolis Field Office failed to respond to allegations of sexual abuse of athletes by former USA Gymnastics physician Lawrence Gerard Nassar with the urgency that the allegations required.”

      “We also found that the FBI Indianapolis Field Office made fundamental errors when it did respond to the allegations, failed to notify the appropriate FBI field office (the Lansing Resident Agency) or state or local authorities of the allegations, and failed to take other steps to mitigate the ongoing threat posed by Nassar,” the inspector general added.

      Kyle Rittenhouse

      Kyle Rittenhouse was acquitted of politicized charges brought against him last summer when he shot three men in self-defense. Two died, and contrary to the media’s racialized coverage of the trial, all three were white.

      During the proceedings, wherein an 18-year-old Rittenhouse (now 19) faced life in prison, prosecutors used aerial footage from FBI surveillance in their effort to convict Rittenhouse. When the defense tried to access “the rest” of the FBI footage from the night in question, however, the bureau claimed it no longer existed.

      Demonizing James Rosen

      In 2010, the Obama administration began aggressive surveillance of journalist James Rosen who was working for Fox News at the time. The Justice Department tracked Rosen by falsely claiming the reporter was a potential terrorist collaborator and accused him of violating the Espionage Act.

      The Obama administration tracked Rosen’s movements and, according to Fox News, even seized the phone records of his parents.

      Deadly Wrongful Conviction

      A 2007 ruling against the government cost the FBI $102 million after agency misconduct resulted in the deaths of two men. In order to protect a mob informant, the FBI was caught deliberately withholding evidence in a case that led to the wrongful convictions of four men, three of which were sentenced to death, two of whom died before true justice was served.

      Martha Stewart

      Most Americans today believe Martha Stewart was convicted 20 years ago on charges of “insider trading.” Her actual conviction that sent her to federal prison was conspiracy to lie about the crime for which she was never charged over a trade that had already taken place.

      Stewart’s quarter-million-dollar sale of ImClone stock served as the pretext for which federal prosecutors, led by none other than Comey, went after the media mogul. Comey’s case, however, was so weak that prosecutors pursued a novel legal theory to secure a conviction.

      According to the theory they pursued, Stewart engaged in “securities fraud” when she declared that she was innocent, which prosecutors said was designed to prop up the value of her company, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. In other words, Stewart’s proclamation of innocence was declared a crime by federal law enforcement, and she spent six months incarcerated.

      Mar-a-Lago Raid

      The Department of Justice appears to be following the same playbook agency officials have used for years in the Democrats’ series of manufactured scandals to bring down Trump.

      Last week, the FBI executed an unprecedented raid of the former president’s Florida residence ostensibly conducted to enforce the Presidential Records Act. Federal officials confiscated more than a dozen boxes from the 128-room mansion pursuant to the rarely prosecuted law, claiming Trump harbored classified information related to the nation’s nuclear secrets. Leaked claims to the Washington Post that Trump possessed sensitive nuclear records, which came hours after Attorney General Merrick Garland professed the agency’s professionalism, however, showcase the sensationalism crafted by officials desperate to justify the raid, which included more than 30 agents.

      At a press conference last week, Garland admitted to personally signing off on the raid he called “narrowly scope[d].” An examination of the warrant, however, reveals that it authorized FBI agents to seize any and every document Trump came into contact with as president. Furthermore, none of the three criminal statutes the DOJ cited in the warrant required the material to be classified, according to Cleveland.

      The FBI also attempted to dispel claims that federal officials stripped the president of his passports, telling CBS News that the agency was not in possession of the documents after Trump blasted that they had been confiscated. An email made public by Trump spokesman Taylor Budowich, however, exposed the FBI’s lie. The email from Jay Bratt, the chief of the counterintelligence and export control section in the DOJ’s National Security Division, confirms that “the filter agents seized three passports belonging to President Trump, two expired and one being his active diplomatic passport.”


      Tristan Justice is the western correspondent for The Federalist. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and The Daily Signal. His work has also been featured in Real Clear Politics and Fox News. Tristan graduated from George Washington University where he majored in political science and minored in journalism. Follow him on Twitter at @JusticeTristan or contact him at Tristan@thefederalist.com.

      FBI Agent Pleads Guilty to Destroying Evidence to Frame Pro-Trump Political Prisoner


      By Ben Wetmore | Published August 19, 2022

      Read more at https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2022/08/fbi-agent-pleads-guilty-destroying-evidence-frame-pro-trump-political-prisoner/

      Former Arkansas State Senator Jon Woods was the first elected official in the state to endorse President Trump in 2016. Two years later U.S. District Judge Timothy L. Brooks of the Western District of Arkansas sentenced Woods to serve 18 years in federal prison, in addition to three years of supervised release and ordered Woods to pay $1.6 million in restitution.

      Yesterday, the lead FBI Agent in his case plead guilty to destroying exculpatory evidence that could have proven Woods’ innocence.

      “In a plea deal filed Wednesday, a former FBI agent pleaded guilty to paying a business to “wipe” his computer to make the hard drive unavailable for forensic examination.

      According to court documents, former agent Robert Cessario was charged with “corrupt destruction of record in an official proceeding” in connection to the corruption trial of former state Sen. Jon Woods of Springdale.

      In the plea deal, Cessario stated: “I erased the contents of the computer hard knowing that the court has ordered that the computer be submitted for a forensic examination. I did so with the intention of making the contents of the computer’s hard unavailable for forensic examination. At the time, I knew that the contents of the hard drive were relevant to an official proceeding, that is, Cause No. 5:17-CR-50010, United States v. Woods et al. I corruptly performed and had performed, the erasures with intent to impair the integrity and availability of the computer hard drive and its contents for use in that official proceeding.”

      JON WOODS STILL SITS IN PRISON EVEN THOUGH THE CORRUPT DOJ AND CORRUPT FBI HAVE NOW ADMITTED THEY FRAMED AN INNOCENT MAN BY DESTROYING EVIDENCE.

      Woods obtained funds for a Christian school in Arkansas and the government alleged that the donation to the school was a form of fraud because it was collected under false pretenses. The case against Woods was the Department of Justice’s favorite trick: using the word ‘fraud’ to apply to any financial transaction they don’t like.

      The Court has known about the illegal destruction of evidence the entire time. Woods’ appeal to the 8th Circuit of Appeals before appellate judges Jane Kelly, an Obama appointee, Michael J. Melloy, a Bush Sr. appointee, and Jonathan A. Kobes, a Trump appointee, case# 18-3057 on October 16, 2020, was denied even though the appellate court knew that the FBI destroyed relevant evidence on purpose.

      Here are the details of the FBI trying to destroy relevant evidence in the Woods case:

      • Woods’ attorneys realized they were missing critical evidence that would prove Woods’ innocence, and asked the prosecutor to turn over a laptop.
      • On November 30, 2017, the lead FBI Special Agent Robert Cessario, was ordered by the Assistant United States Attorney, Aaron Jennen, to deliver his government issued laptop to an FBI forensics examiner in Little Rock named Timothy Whitlock for a forensics examination.
      • FBI Criminal Agent Cessario learned of what the examination would entail during a phone conversation with Agent Whitlock on December 1, 2017.
      • Agent Cessario then brought his government issued laptop to a local computer store in Bentonville, Arkansas on December 4, 2017, at 11:18am and paid in cash the amount of $59.50 to have it professionally ‘wiped’ meaning to eliminate all the digital files.
      • FBI Criminal Agent Cessario then took the laptop home on December 7, 2017 had it ‘wiped’ at least one more time before turning it over as instructed.
      • When Criminal Cessario was confronted by FBI Agent Shun Turner, Criminal Cessario asked Turner along with another Agent Whitlock to LIE and NOT report that the laptop had been ‘wiped.’
      • Agents Whitlock and Turner did the right thing and reported Criminal Cessario

      This comes on the wake of major media coverage of FBI malfeasance and wrongdoing in Trump cases, especially last week’s raid of the Trump estate on bogus reasons about ‘Top Secret’ documents.

      The Gateway Pundit implored Trump to look at the Jon Woods case two years ago, pointing out he was one of the pro-Trump political prisoners serving unjust sentences at the hands of the lawless Department of Justice.

      JON WOODS: PRO-TRUMP AMERICAN POLITICAL PRISONER

      Woods is currently being held at FCI Bastrop in east Texas. His current scheduled release date is July 3, 2034.

      The Gateway Pundit contacted the FBI’s Press Office and did not hear back.

      RINO Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson is involved in the case via his son, Jeremy Hutchinson, who was a State Senator with Woods. Some watching the case suspect that Hutchinson’s strong anti-Trump statements lately are a way to curry favor with the NeverTrump Department of Justice on behalf of his son. One source on the case said, “Asa is kissing DOJ and FBI a** because his son is in trouble, that’s why he’s praising the FBI and going after Trump. Hutchinson’s son was a Christian pro-lifer who cooperated with the corrupt DOJ and it was later revealed he used funds paid to him as an FBI informant to fund his stripper girlfriend’s abortion.”

      During this legal ordeal Woods’ wife left him due to the stress of the prosecution/persecution.

      WOODS FELLOW INMATE DESCRIBES ABUSE, POWER OF PRAYER

      Former Congressman Steve Stockman, who was another pro-Trump political prisoner whose sentence was commuted by President Trump as he was outgoing two days before Christmas on December 23, 2021, served part of his prison sentence with Jon Woods. Stockman said while in prison with Woods, a family friend got a small group of five children to regularly pray and would send homemade cards with positive scripture references. Woods told Stockman that he was regularly being abused by prison guards and Bureau of Prison authorities who would often put him in solitary confinement for no reason, including one eight-month stretch in solitary. When Stockman’s sentence was commuted and released, Stockman asked the child prayer warriors to pray non-stop for Woods.

      The Bureau of Prisons has blocked Woods from attending religious services, but the children would call him for 15 minutes at a time and pray with him and sing to him. The prison authorities would confiscate the cards from the Christian kids alleging that they were somehow “transmitting drugs.”

      Stockman added: “I know this for a fact, the judiciary ignored him and threw out his appeals, he was thrown in solitary, he was isolated and alone. That’s what the prison system does to inmates: they isolate you and make you feel like nobody cares about you. Without these kids, without their prayers and Jon’s faith in God, he was going through hell on earth and he wouldn’t have made it this far. Those kids’s prayers, and my family’s, are in the process of being answered because these corrupt federal officials are being exposed by the grace of God.”

      Children praying for pro-Trump political prisoner Jon Woods’ release.

      Ben Wetmore

      Published previously in Human Events, The Federalist, American Thinker. Featured in the New York Times, Washington Post, Playboy. benwetmore.com

      The FBI Wing of BLM


      Ann Coulter | Posted: Aug 17, 2022

      Read more at https://townhall.com/columnists/anncoulter/2022/08/17/the-fbi-wing-of-blm—p–n2611919/

      The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com, and WhatDidYouSay.org.

      The FBI Wing of BLM

      Source: AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana, File

      Republicans, can you stop screaming like hyenas at every little indignity suffered by our former president? Donald Trump wouldn’t lift a finger to help you.

      Yes, it was asinine for the FBI to stage a raid on Mar-a-Lago when we all know the only documents Trump wanted were his letters and photos with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. (North Korea has nukes. See? “Nuclear documents.”) Trump needs those for his scrapbook, to accompany the photos of him with Kim Kardashian, Mark Zuckerberg and Sean Hannity.

      Still, the raid isn’t going to affect your life. It barely affected Trump’s. He was golfing in New Jersey at the time.

      You want to be mad at the FBI? This is why you should be angry. Rather than fight crime, the agency has turned itself into the wingman for “Defund the Police.” That could get you and your family killed.

      Consider how they treated the cops in Louisville, Kentucky, who risked their lives trying to serve a search warrant on a major fentanyl dealer’s moll, Breonna Taylor, on March 13, 2020. The true story was discussed in last week’s column, as well as my Dec. 16, 2020, column.

      Here’s the rest of the story, as told by Sgt. John Mattingly in his book, “12 Seconds in the Dark.”

      In the spring of 2020, as the defenseless officers were being smeared — by Oprah, LeBron James, Cardi B., Beyonce, Common, Kim Kardashian, Alicia Keys, Demi Lovato, Ellen DeGeneres, Amy Schumer, Ice Cube, Diddy, Kamala Harris, the entire MSNBC on-air talent, and on and on — a confidential informant revealed that a hit had been put on the officers by two black motorcycle clubs, No Haterz and STR8 RYDERZ.

      And here’s something random: Breonna’s mother was dating the president of one of the clubs.

      A few weeks later, the ATF received information that the club’s Chicago chapter would be driving to Louisville that weekend to kill the officers. The targeted cops were given security and a description of the cars and motorcycles coming for them.

      What happened next would force the officers to flee and live in hiding for the rest of their lives, thanks to the inaction of the FBI.

      Here’s how Sgt. Mattingly describes it: “On May 31, 2020, I was told the FBI corroborated two separate threats from different sources. We received a call at 10 p.m. asking us to pack our bags and leave our house. We had to sell our house that we lived in for six weeks and have been in ‘hiding’ ever since.”

      It seems a $50,000 bounty had been put on the heads of the officers. Breonna’s birthday would have been that Friday. As part of the balloon release celebrating the occasion, the organizers wanted to “have something to celebrate.” To wit: Dead cops.

      At least the FBI had the officers’ backs! No, I’m sorry, the FBI — Trump’s FBI — sided with the guys who’d put a bounty on the cops’ heads. The agency dropped the case after a remarkably short 2 1/2 weeks, announcing — implausibly — that the informant was “unreliable.”

      Well, he’d proven reliable in the past. The informant was, even then, being used in another active case. And of course, no one at FBI headquarters had bothered talking to him. But so desperate was the FBI to close the case that it was willing to blow up one of its own informants: Once ruled “unreliable,” a source can never be used in another federal case.

      Mattingly says the FBI refused to investigate credible threats on the officers’ lives because of the “optics” of “going after a mother in a nationally sensitive case.” Shouldn’t it be the reverse: The FBI must investigate because Breonna’s mother was affiliated with a club planning to murder the cops whom she blamed for her daughter’s death? (In fact, Breonna died because her good pal Kenneth Walker shot at the police. Ironically, a no-knock warrant — the officers knocked and yelled, “POLICE!” — would have saved her life.)

      Local FBI agents in Louisville were enraged. Asked what the targeted cops were supposed to do, the FBI bosses said: “Tell them to relocate.” Two weeks later, Mattingly had to watch as the FBI sent 15 agents to investigate a racist rope in Bubba Wallace’s stall at NASCAR.

      Right-wingers, save your breath defending the most disloyal man alive. Do something useful and get a job at the FBI. Just be sure to put “BLM” on your resume! The next Republican president (Ron DeSantis) is going to need a lot of help.

      Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


      A.F. Branco Cartoon – High Octane

      A.F. BRANCO | on August 18, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-high-octane-2/

      The raid on Mar A Lago by the FBI and DOJ seems to be making a Trump 2024 rum more likely.

      Trump Running 2024?
      Political Cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

      DONATE to A.F.Branco Cartoons – Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

      A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

      Democrats Say, ‘No One Is Above the Law,’ But This List of Their Corrupt Allies Proves Otherwise


      BY: JORDAN BOYD | AUGUST 17, 2022

      Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/08/17/democrats-say-no-one-is-above-the-law-but-this-list-of-their-corrupt-allies-proves-otherwise/

      President Joe Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland

      Author Jordan Boyd profile

      JORDAN BOYD

      VISIT ON TWITTER@JORDANBOYDTX

      MORE ARTICLES

      When the FBI executed a raid on the home of former President Donald Trump, who happens to be the most popular political leader in America, the “get Trump” crowd was overjoyed.

      Democrat Speaker of the House Nancy PelosiMiles Taylor (the “anonymous” author who pretended to be a senior Trump aide), Clinton-era Secretary of Labor Robert Reich, even Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, and many others all gave the same justification for the FBI’s actions that they gave for Trump’s first and second impeachments: “No one is above the law, not even a president of the United States.”

      Yet, a majority of Americans know that’s categorically untrue. That’s why so many of them rejected Attorney General Merrick Garland and FBI Director Christopher Wray’s scolding of anyone who dared question their credibility following the raid.

      But while the FBI and DOJ have busied themselves with targeting Trump and his aides, colluding with the National School Boards Association to silence concerned parents, concocting entrapment schemes masquerading as plots to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, and chasing down election integrity supporters at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, plenty of real criminals and security threats have gotten away scot-free. That’s no accident.

      Here is everyone who Democrats and their bureaucrat buddies have deemed “above the law” and unworthy of proper investigation and prosecution.

      1. President Joe Biden

      A president avoiding paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in taxes seems like the kind of thing federal agencies, including the recently financially invigorated Internal Revenue Service, should explore. Yet Biden, who hasn’t explained millions of dollars of his recorded income, and First Lady Jill Biden together reportedly dodged about $517,000 in Medicare and Obamacare taxes between 2017 and 2020 without scrutiny.

      2. Hunter Biden

      The president’s son isn’t just a walking liability for the Biden family name, he’s a glaring national security threat with a long, infamous history of using illicit drugs, engaging in possibly criminal sexual escapades with foreign women, and selling access to his dad under the guise of doing business with foreign oligarchs.

      Besides all this and his reckless handling of a lost gun in 2018 — which, against normal protocol, the Secret Service reportedly helped him cover up — Hunter likely lied on federal forms about his drug use to purchase that gun, a felony, with barely a whisper of punishment.

      3. Hillary Clinton

      Hillary Clinton and her staff mishandled highly classified information, which resulted in at least 91 security violations. The FBI, of course, never raided Clinton’s house over her rogue server despite the crimes committed to cover it up. Instead, as Sen. Chuck Grassley put it, the FBI “inexplicably agreed to destroy [Clinton staffers Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson’s] laptops knowing that the contents were the subject of Congressional subpoenas and preservation letters.”

      4. Everyone Involved in Benghazi

      Speaking of Clinton, why wasn’t she or any other Obama-era bureaucrat who was responsible for abandoning four Americans in Benghazi, Libya, where they were murdered by terrorists, punished for trying to cover up the fatal scandal?

      5. Illegal Border Crossers

      U.S. Customs and Border Protection has apprehended roughly 3.5 million illegal border crossers since Biden assumed office, but those migrants are rarely punished for violating the law.

      Instead of addressing how the compromised border is fostering an environment ripe for trafficking and other crimes, the Biden administration along with the FBI and DOJ have brushed off concerns about illegal immigration. Apparently, it is more important to go after American citizens than prosecute potentially dangerous foreign ones.

      6. Gavin Newsom and Every Other Dem Who Partied While Americans Suffered Lockdowns

      Dozens of Democrats including California Gov. Gavin Newsom, Pelosi, and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio were caught violating their own Covid-19 lockdown rules. If Democrats cared about rule of law so much, why did these politicians escape accountability?

      7. Summer of Rage Rioters

      During the summer of 2020, rioters looted, burned, and destroyed more than $2 billion worth of private and federal property. Some of those who were caught were bailed out by Kamala Harris and her allies and let off the hook by the federal government. The rioters who weren’t caught can live comfortably knowing that the DOJ is too busy trying to track down potential J6 offenders to prosecute them.

      8. Climate Insurrectionists

      In October 2021, rowdy climate rioters stormed the Department of the Interiorphysically fought with police, and vandalized a building. Several officers were even injured, but I don’t see the rioters’ faces plastered all over an FBI tip line website nor an illegitimate congressional committee dedicated to their downfall.

      9. Jane’s Revenge

      It took 44 days after attacks on dozens of pregnancy centers, churches, and pro-life organizations began for the FBI to tell The Federalist that it would investigate the firebombings. Two months after the agency reportedly started its search into the criminal activity, neither the FBI nor DOJ has announced charges against the vandals, including a mysterious anarchist-connected group called Jane’s Revenge, which took responsibility for some of the destruction.

      10. Everyone Else Who Threatened SCOTUS over Dobbs

      Shortly after a leak revealed that the Supreme Court planned to strike down Roe v. Wade, leftists called for violence against the Republican-nominated justices. While the Biden administration and DOJ stood idly by, some even said the court should burn to the ground. It took until a man was caught attempting to assassinate Justice Brett Kavanaugh, one of Garland’s former colleagues, for the DOJ to respond to Republican Sen. Marco Rubio’s questions about whether the agency planned to prosecute anyone touting the “ongoing, coordinated campaign of intimidation against the majority of the justices on the Supreme Court.” Even then, nothing came of the DOJ’s words.

      11. The Pelosi Family

      Suspected insider trading deserves at least a second glance by federal investigators, but it looks like, so far, Nancy Pelosi and her husband Paul have gotten away with conveniently timing their stock purchases and sales to massively grow their wealth.

      12. Almost Everyone on Jeffrey Epstein’s Client List

      Epstein and his co-conspirator Ghislaine Maxwell were both convicted of trafficking children for sex, but the list of their clients is still reportedly harbored by the DOJ, something lamented by many including Elon Musk. Of those names that have surfaced from Epstein’s “little black book,” few have been prosecuted and convicted for their involvement in the sex-trafficking ring.

      13. Marc Elias and Election Law-Breakers

      Marc Elias has repeatedly tried to undermine U.S. elections, something the FBI loves to spy on Americans for. Elias has such a reputation for meddling and manipulating elections that even a federal judge reprimanded him for it. Unlike Douglass Mackey, who was charged by the DOJ for posting a meme encouraging Hillary voters to “text” their votes, however, Elias has not faced any charges or unannounced raids.

      14. Mark Milley

      Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, undermined Trump by having secret conversations with known U.S. enemy communist China. In those covert calls, Milley promised to warn China if the U.S. ever decided to attack. Talk about a national security threat that deserves some attention from federal law enforcement.

      15. Eric Swalwell

      Speaking of communist China, Democrat Rep. Eric Swalwell canoodling with a known spy for the nation’s No. 1 enemy seems like a pretty serious offense. Instead of a member of the House Intelligence Committee facing consequences for giving foreign spies access to key U.S. government offices and information, Swalwell is still comfortably rage-tweeting about Trump and MAGA supporters and appearing as a guest on corrupt corporate media programs.

      16. The NSA

      The National Security Agency deserved to be disbanded over its wiretapping scandal, but it’s still spying on Americans such as Fox News host Tucker Carlson with no reprimand.

      17. Eric Holder

      Former Attorney General Eric Holder misled Congress during its investigation of the Obama-era “Fast and Furious” gun-running scandal, which used taxpayer dollars to put guns into the hands of Mexican drug lords. Holder was held in contempt, but that’s pretty much the only punishment he received for intentionally dodging subpoenas and hiding documents from congressional oversight.

      18. Susan Rice

      President Barack Obama’s National Security Adviser Susan Rice unmasked members of the Trump transition team and then lied about it. Unmasking may be a legitimate and legal process for those with the authority, but covering up an attempt to target the political enemies of the regime is an abuse of power that deserves examination.

      Instead, it was yet another action U.S. intelligence agencies exploited to justify spying on American citizens.

      19. All the Russia Hoaxers

      There were plenty of people in the DOJ and FBI who broke the law when they lied on official documents and to other officials to advance the Russia-collusion hoax. Yet, FBI Director Christopher Wray admitted during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in early August that so far, none of the FBI agents involved in the SpyGate scandal against Trump have faced serious consequences.

      Similarly, despite lying about why he was supplying information about a supposed link between Trump and the Russia-based Alfa Bank to the FBI, former Clinton campaign attorney Michael Sussmann was acquitted and let go without consequence.

      20. Themselves

      The same people who control the enforcement of the law, who love lording “no one is above the law” over Americans, are the ones who think they are above any semblance of oversight or law or constitutionality.

      That’s why the FBI has skirted any of Congress’s attempts at oversight even though it has a long history of botched and politicized investigations, sometimes authorized on falsified information.

      Instead of investigating and prosecuting real crimes, the FBI and DOJ have chosen to shame Americans who have called out the corruption and politicization that clearly drives their agencies’ actions. That’s a deliberate decision, but also a disastrous one.

      Rule of law is one thing that sets the United States apart as a bastion of freedom, but when the government fails to uphold it properly, as the list details, the nation is in crisis and on the verge of falling apart.


      Jordan Boyd is a staff writer at The Federalist and co-producer of The Federalist Radio Hour. Her work has also been featured in The Daily Wire and Fox News. Jordan graduated from Baylor University where she majored in political science and minored in journalism. Follow her on Twitter @jordanboydtx.

      Feds’ Routine Tyranny Suggests They Aren’t as Afraid of the American People as They Should Be


      BY: J.B. SHURK | AUGUST 16, 2022

      Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/08/16/feds-routine-tyranny-suggest-they-arent-as-afraid-of-the-american-people-as-they-should-be/

      The exterior of the Internal Revenue Service Building

      Author J.B. Shurk profile

      J.B. SHURK

      MORE ARTICLES

      Alan Moore, author and social critic, asserts in “V for Vendetta” that “People shouldn’t be afraid of their government. Governments should be afraid of their people.” When a young director in Karachi, Pakistan, adapted “Vendetta” for a live theatrical performance 10 years ago, he repeated the line during the play’s curtain call to raucous applause from the audience. Moore’s simple words reflect poignantly the human desire to be free from government tyranny.

      Moore’s statement is widely embraced in the United States, where “the people” are constitutionally vested with power over government. It is doubtful, however, that today’s permanent bureaucracy in Washington, D.C., would concur. 

      This philosophical divide between the American people and their government is an important one. Should the American people be afraid of the U.S. government? Of course not. Yet a new army of IRS agents that will be used to audit middle-class Americans and a partisan DOJ and FBI that routinely ignore leftist violence while throwing the book at MAGA voters strongly suggest otherwise. 

      Does the federal government still work for American citizens, or have American citizens become nothing more than subjects expected to obey Washington’s bureaucratic regime? For many Americans, the answer to that question is glaringly obvious. 

      After Chris Wray’s FBI launched an unprecedented raid of President Trump’s private residence at Mar-a-Lago on Aug. 8, the director’s immediate concern was not his agency’s appearance of impropriety but the denouncement of his lackeys’ behavior by the American public. 

      “I’m always concerned about threats to law enforcement,” Wray declared while saying nothing of threats to Americans from federal law enforcement. Who is more of a threat to American liberty: citizens using their constitutionally protected free speech to criticize the FBI or wayward FBI agents acting under the color of law? 

      Clearly, those with great power represent the greatest threat to freedom. For those such as Wray, who believe the FBI is the real victim, it is the citizen expressing himself who must be held accountable.

      Wray’s decision to shield his agents from criticism while obliquely intimidating citizens is hardly a departure from the federal government’s standard operating procedure. Before the Democrats’ recent addition of 87,000 new prying IRS agents to hound American taxpayers, including the hiring of agents who will “carry a firearm and be willing to use deadly force,” Barack Obama’s IRS was already targeting and harassing conservative organizations. 

      Why should Americans expect a greatly expanded and well-armed IRS to behave any differently this time?

      A similar abuse of power during Obama’s presidency occurred when his Environmental Protection Agency released “sensitive, private, and personal materials on more than 100,000 farmers and ranchers” to outside environmental groups in what was seen as an intentional effort to promote “eco-activist tyranny.” It was not enough for the EPA to harass America’s farmers with endless agricultural, livestock, and water regulations; the agency decided to permit outside “help” to further its interests in enforcing “green” regulations. 

      Now that congressional Democrats have succeeded in finding a path for greatly expanding the Green New Deal “climate change” agenda, it is likely that the EPA’s harassment of farmers will continue in the future. 

      The FBI, the IRS, and the EPA are but three agencies with tremendous powers that can be used to intimidate or imperil Americans. There are more than 400 departments, agencies, and sub-agencies within the federal government, and “no one knows definitively how many agencies, components, and commissions exist.” 

      Each of these authorities is constantly issuing rules, regulations, and guidelines that affect Americans’ rights and liberties without their knowledge. Each of those bodies exercises jurisdiction over the American people in ways that most don’t even realize. Does this sound like a government afraid of its citizens or tyranny?


      J.B. Shurk is a freedom-minded, anti-establishment, sometimes unorthodox, committed generalist and a proud American from Daniel Boone country.

      Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


      A.F. Branco Cartoon – Ready to Blow

      A.F. BRANCO | on August 16, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-ready-to-blow/

      People are fed up with the bias 2 tier justice system against conservatives and Trump supporters while favoring the left.

      Bias Justice Department
      Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

      DONATE to A.F.Branco Cartoons – Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

      A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

      BREAKING: FBI Raid Warrant Demanded Seizure of Literally Any Record Trump Ever Saw During 4-Year Presidential Term


      BY: TRISTAN JUSTICE | AUGUST 12, 2022

      Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/08/12/breaking-fbi-raid-warrant-demanded-seizure-of-literally-any-record-trump-ever-saw-during-4-year-presidential-term/

      Merrick Garland and Marine One over Mar-a-lago

      Author Tristan Justice profile

      TRISTAN JUSTICE

      VISIT ON TWITTER@JUSTICETRISTAN

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      The FBI search warrant authorizing a government raid of former President Donald Trump’s Florida residence sought an exhaustive list of any White House records the president ever came in contact with, according to the document obtained by The Federalist.

      Outlining the “property to be seized” by the more than 30 agents who rummaged through the former president’s Mar-a-Lago mansion, the warrant demanded confiscation of any document Trump ever saw, read, or created for the entirety of his four years as commander-in-chief.

      “All physical documents and records constituting evidence, contraband, fruits of crime, or other items illegally possessed in violation” of federal statutes governing records possession, the warrant reads, were to be seized. Records extended to “Any government and/or Presidential Records created between January 20, 2017, and January 20, 2021.”

      In other words, had Trump written something down on a napkin, federal officials were authorized to raid the former president’s home and capture it.

      The affidavit allegedly asserting probable cause has not been made available to the public by the DOJ or the federal court that sealed it. The search warrant was signed on Aug. 5 and gave authorities two weeks to conduct the unprecedented raid. The federal magistrate who signed the warrant previously donated thousands to former President Barack Obama. Attorney General Merrick Garland, whose Supreme Court nomination was invalidated after Donald Trump became president in 2017, acknowledged that he personally signed off on the raid in a Thursday press conference. Garland also claimed the search was conducted with a narrow scope.

      “First, I personally approved the decision to seek a search warrant in this matter,” Garland said. “Second, the department does not take such a decision lightly. Where possible, it is standard practice to seek less intrusive means as an alternative to a search, and to narrowly scope any search that is undertaken.”

      On Monday, three days after the warrant was signed, FBI officials conducted the hours-long raid of the 128-room estate which reportedly included an intrusive search of former First Lady Melania Trump’s wardrobe. While ostensibly executed under the pretext of violations of the Presidential Records Act, a law that rarely results in prosecutions, the raid has become the latest episode of Democrats weaponizing the Justice Department to go after political opponents, with Trump at the top as public enemy No. 1.

      According to Fox News, law enforcement officials say they confiscated classified documents. Trump, however, says documents were declassified.

      “Number one, it was all declassified. Number two, they didn’t need to ‘seize’ anything,” the former president said on TruthSocial. “They could have had it anytime they wanted without playing politics and breaking into Mar-a-Lago. It was in secured storage, with an additional lock put on as per their request… They could have had it anytime they wanted–and that includes LONG ago. ALL THEY HAD TO DO WAS ASK. The bigger problem is, what are they going to do with the 33 million pages of documents, many of which are classified, that President Obama took to Chicago?”


      Tristan Justice is the western correspondent for The Federalist. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and The Daily Signal. His work has also been featured in Real Clear Politics and Fox News. Tristan graduated from George Washington University where he majored in political science and minored in journalism. Follow him on Twitter at @JusticeTristan or contact him at Tristan@thefederalist.com.

      EXCLUSIVE: Prominent Conservative Groups Write Open Letter to Garland, Wray for ‘Politicizing’ DOJ Under Biden


      By SARAH WEAVER, STAFF WRITER | August 15, 2022

      Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/08/15/conservative-groups-open-letter-merrick-garland-christopher-wray-politicizing-doj-joe-biden/

      U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland swears in the new Bureau of Prisons (BOP) Director Colette Peters in Washington
      REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein

      Multiple conservative organizations penned an open letter Friday, sharply criticizing Department of Justice (DOJ) Attorney General Merrick Garland and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Director Christopher Wray for politicizing both agencies. The letter, exclusively obtained by The Daily Caller, was signed by individuals representing organizations including the Conservative Partnership Institute, the Media Research Center, and the Leadership Institute. The contents of the letter called for the release of all documents related to the raid on President Trump’s home in Florida as well as the confiscation of Congressman Scott Perry’s cellphone, stating both actions “undermined the rule of law in America.”

      “In overseeing these actions, you and FBI Director Christopher Wray have grossly failed in your mission to oversee an impartial and equal application of the law,” the letter reads.

      WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 12: FBI director nominee Christopher Wray testifies during his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee July 12, 2017 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.

      WASHINGTON, DC – JULY 12: FBI director nominee Christopher Wray testifies during his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee July 12, 2017 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.

      The letter stipulated several other examples of what the organizations claimed pointed to a “politicized” DOJ and FBI, including labeling parents at school board meetings domestic terrorists, perpetuating the Russia collusion narrative about Trump and turning a blind eye to the crimes of Hunter Biden.

      “Under your leadership and that of Mr. Wray, the DOJ and FBI have breached the public trust. This blatant politicization of the federal justice system is a dangerous escalation without precedent, and incompatible with the United States Constitution,” the letter said.

      Garland Open Letter by Sarah Weaver

      “Accordingly, we, the undersigned hereby demand that you immediately make public all underlying information relied upon or referenced in both the warrants executed against former President Trump and Congressman Perry this week,” the letter concluded.

      The FBI raided Trump’s home in Florida last week, in an apparent effort to retrieve classified documents the former president had allegedly taken with him when he left the White House. The FBI obtained 11 sets of classified documents from Trump’s house, according to documents obtained by the Daily Caller Friday.

      Garland, in a press conference Thursday, announced that he had “personally approved” the decision to obtain a warrant. (RELATED: ‘I Don’t Know’: Schiff Can’t Explain Why DoJ Took So Long To Retrieve Documents From Trump)

      The FBI seized Republican Rep. Scott Perry’s cell phone a day after the raid on Mar-a-Lago.

      “DOJ chose this unnecessary and aggressive action instead of simply contacting my attorneys,” Perry told Fox News at the time.

      Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


      A.F. Branco Cartoon – Blinders Are Off

      A.F. BRANCO | on August 13, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-blinders-are-off/

      The Deep State has adopted Mao’s theory that ‘Power grows from the barrel of a gun using the DOJ and FBI.

      Deep State 2 Tier Justice
      Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022

      DONATE to A.F.Branco Cartoons – Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

      A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

      Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


      A.F. Branco Cartoon – In The Way

      A.F. BRANCO | on August 12, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-in-the-way/

      President Trump is under attack because he’s in the way of getting to you.

      Trump Under Attack
      Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

      DONATE to A.F.Branco Cartoons – Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

      A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and President Donald Trump.

      Senior DOJ officials blast FBI raid on Mar-a-Lago as ‘spectacular failure’: ‘The worst of the bureaucracy in action’


      By CHRIS ENLOE | August 11, 2022

      Read more at https://www.theblaze.com/news/doj-officials-raid-spectacular-failure/

      A senior Justice Department official condemned the FBI’s raid on Mar-a-Lago as a “spectacular backfire” for triggering a tsunami of backlash against the Justice Department. Two senior DOJ officials spoke with Newsweek and disclosed new details about what led up to the raid. According to one official, the FBI specifically planned to conduct the raid when former President Donald Trump was not present at Mar-a-Lago. Trump was in New York at the time of the raid, Fox News reported.

      “What a spectacular backfire,” the senior DOJ official said of the FBI’s attempt to keep the raid “low-key.”

      “I know that there is much speculation out there that this is political persecution, but it is really the best and the worst of the bureaucracy in action,” the official explained. “They wanted to punctuate the fact that this was a routine law enforcement action, stripped of any political overtones, and yet [they] got exactly the opposite.”

      The second DOJ official told Newsweek the FBI “were seeking to avoid any media circus” but “they also created the very firestorm they sought to avoid, in ignoring the fallout.”

      The officials explained the FBI had been planning the raid for weeks after receiving information from a confidential source about allegedly classified documents being stored at Mar-a-Lago. Newsweek reported the informant both identified the documents and told investigators where they were located. Importantly, the sources told Newsweek that Attorney General Merrick Garland did not have advance knowledge about the specifics of the raid. Instead, FBI Director Christopher Wray approved the raid.

      “I know it’s hard for people to believe,” one of the DOJ officials said, “but this was a matter for the U.S. attorney and the FBI.”

      Despite claims that Garland was not involved in the planning of the raid, Republican lawmakers are demanding that Garland and Wray face repercussions for the unprecedented raid.

      “I’ve never been a fan of overusing impeachment, but I think there has to be an investigation. And if it warrants it, there’s going to have to be a look at whether or not the attorney general has misused his office for political purposes. Have they gone after a political opponent? I mean, this is beyond the pale,” Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said on Fox News.

      “At a minimum, Garland must resign or be impeached. The search warrant must be published. Christoper Wray must be removed. And the FBI reformed top to bottom,” Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) said.

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