A statement issued by Devin Nunes Wednesday gives the clearest indication of what the FISA abuse memo will show. Some say it’s much ado about Carter Page, but the memo promises to show FISA abuse.
What we can expect to read is that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein approved surveillance of Carter Page. It was based on a Fusion GPS Russian dossier put together by a former British intelligence officer. The warrant was filled with unverified claims and paid for by the DNC and Hillary Clinton.
Spying and investigation that resulted were used to fuel a whisper campaign against Donald Trump. It’s an abuse of power.
The counter is that Rosenstein just took over and merely followed the procedures already set up. They will also say there were other reasons the Carter Page surveillance was approved.
THE ACCUSATION AGAINST PAGE
Page had been looked at by the FBI once before for an association with Russians and that could be a reason for the spying.
However, Page was never accused of wrongdoing and denied any working association. Russians allegedly didn’t consider him an asset because they said he’s an “idiot”.
If Republicans are staking their case on Carter Page, this memo might be a disappointment according to some critics on the left and right. If true, it’s also a wonder then why all the fuss about its release. There has to be more.
While Page was in no way a Russian agent, his past connections to Russians did put him on the FBI radar. In July 2016, Page traveled to Russia and was accused of meeting with two Russians tied to Putin. He denies that.
At the same time, he had little more than a peripheral involvement in the Trump campaign. He left the campaign in August or September. The FBI didn’t start spying on him until mid-October.
The allegation against Page is that Russians offered him millions to get the sanctions lifted. Since he wasn’t on anyone’s staff, it’s hard to imagine how he was supposed to do that.
Carter Page is an unlikely Russian agent.
The most important point in all this is that an unverified dossier put together by Steele and paid for by Hillary’ campaign and the DNC was in part used to obtain the warrant.
The GOP and Devin Nunes are staking their reputations on this memo and possibly Carter Page. “TPM’s Josh Marshall tweeted, “A Pickett’s Charge on behalf of Carter Page. Helluva hill to die on.”
Still the Republicans working on the issue promise more.
.@Jim_Jordan on FISA memo: “Tomorrow when this memo comes out, the American people I think will see very clearly what the FBI told the court to get that secret warrant and what they didn’t tell the court.” #Tucker pic.twitter.com/Qa1w7iIkyq
— Fox News (@FoxNews) February 2, 2018
NUNES ON THE FIRING LINE
The left-wing media and anti-Trumpers are out in force calling Nunes a coward, a stooge, traitor and liar. Katy Tur compared Devin Nunes to fugitive Edward Snowden.
MSNBC host Katy Tur compares House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes to wanted fugitive Edward Snowden. pic.twitter.com/XjQNIn0gsQ
— Ryan Saavedra 🇺🇸 (@RealSaavedra) February 2, 2018
It’s not Devin Nunes’ memo and it’s non-partisan. The treatment of Chairman Nunes is very unfair.
Another reason to #ReleaseTheMemo: A lot of just really bad, inaccurate info being disseminated in meantime. (1) This isn’t the “Nunes memo”. He didn’t draft it & it’s not his memo. (2) This is strictly about FISA abuse & misconduct. (3) Its content is actually 100% non-partisan
— Lee Zeldin (@RepLeeZeldin) February 1, 2018