Editorial: For the state of the Union

We must get to the bottom of what FBI partisans have done

We didn’t need a speech to know the State of the Union – which is, in a word, precarious.

 

The House Intelligence Committee Monday voted to release, after required vetting by the White House, a memo said to detail what may be historic, politically motivated actions in 2016 by the Federal Bureau of Investigation against perhaps both the Trump campaign and transition team.

In sum, the allegations that are slowly leaking out of our government appear to accuse top FBI officials – who we already know from text messages were virulent anti-Trump/pro-Clinton partisans – of, as one former federal prosecutor put it, “a plot to exonerate Hillary Clinton illegally, and then if she lost the election, to frame Donald Trump” with a crime.

In other countries, that would be called “an attempted coup.”

We pray that’s not the case here. But forbiddingly, outgoing FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe on Monday was removed from his job earlier than scheduled after his boss, FBI Director Christopher Wray, reportedly went to Capitol Hill Sunday to view the four-page memo.

Did Wray see something so onerous, so ominous that his deputy had to go forthwith?

If so, what was it? Did the Obama administration use disingenuous, partisan pretense – such as the sham Russian dossier that the Hillary Clinton campaign and Democratic National Committee paid for to discredit her Republican rival – to spy on a major-party presidential campaign?

If so, that’s immeasurably more grave and grievous than a two-bit burglary. It would easily be the most monumental abuse of power by a presidential administration in U.S. history.

Democrats have sought to squelch the memo. How sad. One would think they would join their fellow members of Congress, as both parties did during Watergate, to get to the bottom of a potential runaway White House – and, in this case, FBI and Department of Justice.

McCabe’s ouster may also have something to do with an impending inspector general report on the scandal. “Agents and lawyers expect the report by the Justice Department’s inspector general, Michael E. Horowitz, to be highly critical of some FBI actions in 2016,” the New York Times reported ever so delicately.

Also ominously, Fox News media watchdog Howard Kurtz reports that McCabe assured Trump adviser Reince Preibus in private last year that media reports of repeated Trump campaign contacts with Russia were hogwash. But when asked to, McCabe and FBI director James Comey refused to say so publicly. Then, strangely, it was somehow leaked to CNN and others that the White House had “pressured” the FBI to debunk the Russia claims – making it look like it was all the White House’s doing when, in truth, McCabe was the one who brought it up.

Did McCabe cynically bait the White House into a public relations trap?

This much we know: The Obama DOJ and FBI planned to exonerate Clinton of her national security offenses in the email scandal before the “investigation” was even over – and some of the same characters who did that helped launch the probe against Trump.

What else did they do? It’s imperative for the state of the Union that we find out.

 

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Sun, 02/18/2018 - 00:03

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