Report: FBI leaked ‘unverified’ Russian Trump smear, still blocking Russian intel on Lynch

by WorldTribune Staff, July 2, 2018

The FBI continues to withhold information alleging Obama administration Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s interfered in the Hillary Clinton email investigation while the agency had no problem leaking the unverified dossier alleging Trump-Russia collusion during the 2016 presidential campaign, a report said.

In his book, ‘A Higher Loyalty’, former FBI Director James Comey describes a September 2015 meeting with Loretta Lynch in which the then-attorney general asked him to describe the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails as a ‘matter.’ / AP

That information on Lynch “consists of unverified accounts intercepted from putative Russian sources in which the head of the Democratic National Committee allegedly implicates the Hillary Clinton campaign and Lynch in a secret deal to fix the Clinton email investigation,” Paul Sperry wrote for RealClearInvestigations.

“It is remarkable how this Justice Department is protecting the corruption of the Obama Justice Department,” said Tom Fitton, president of Washington-based watchdog Judicial Watch, which is suing for the material.

“True or false, the material is consequential because it appears to have influenced former FBI Director James Comey’s decision to break with bureau protocols because he didn’t trust Lynch,” Sperry wrote.

In his book “A Higher Loyalty”, Comey said he took over the Clinton email probe, announcing Clinton should not be indicted, because of a “development still unknown to the American public” that “cast serious doubt” on Lynch’s credibility.

Comey was “clearly” writing about the intercepted material on Lynch, Sperry said.

“If the material documents an authentic exchange between Lynch and a Clinton aide, it would appear to be strong evidence that the Obama administration put partisan political considerations ahead of its duty to enforce the law,” Sperry wrote.

“If the material is a fabrication, it may constitute the most fruitful effort by the Russians to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election. For if Comey had not gone around Lynch and given his July 2016 press conference clearing Clinton, he almost certainly would not have publicly announced the reopening for the case just prior to the election – an event Clinton and her allies blame for her surprising loss to Trump.”

Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz censored the Lynch material from his report on the FBI’s investigation of Clinton because of its “top secret” nature.

“The contents of the secret intelligence document – which purport to show that Lynch informed the Clinton campaign she’d make sure the FBI didn’t push too hard – were included in the inspector general’s original draft. But in the official IG report issued June 14, the information was tucked into a classified appendix to the report and entirely blanked out,” Sperry wrote.

Congressional sources told RealClearInvestigations the material is classified “TS/SCI,” which stands for Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information.

“Such security precautions were not taken with the Steele dossier, which alleges corruption within the Trump campaign,” Sperry noted. “Although the FBI and CIA used it as both an investigative and intelligence resource, its contents were readily shared with Congress and widely leaked to the media.”

In March 2016, according to a letter Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley sent Lynch, the FBI received hacked documents from U.S. intelligence agencies that had access to stolen emails stored on Russian networks. One of the intercepted documents revealed an alleged email from then-DNC Chairwoman Wasserman Schultz to an operative working for billionaire Democratic fundraiser George Soros. It claimed Lynch had assured the Clinton campaign that investigators and prosecutors would go easy on Clinton regarding her use of a private email server while serving as secretary of state. Lynch allegedly made the promise directly to Clinton political director Amanda Renteria, Sperry’s report said.

“The FBI apparently took the document seriously but never interviewed anyone named in it until Clinton’s case was closed by Comey in July 2016,” Sperry noted. “The next month, the FBI quizzed Lynch informally about the allegations. Comey reportedly also confronted the attorney general with the sensitive document and was told to leave her office after getting a frosty reception. No other parties mentioned in the document have been interviewed by the FBI.”

In September 2015, Comey said Lynch called him into her office and asked him to minimize the Clinton email probe by calling it “a matter” instead of an “investigation,” which aligned with Clinton campaign talking points. Then, just days before FBI agents interviewed Clinton in July 2016, Lynch privately met with former President Bill Clinton on her government plane while it was parked on an airport tarmac in Phoenix. In a text message that has since been brought to light, the lead investigators on the case, Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, made clear at the time their understanding that Lynch knew that “no charges will be brought” against Clinton.

Meanwhile, Goodlatte revealed during Strzok’s closed session interview with the House Judiciary and Oversight committees last week that Strzok refused to answer multiple questions, including whether he communicated with the author of the Trump dossier or with Fusion GPS, the firm paid by Hillary Clinton’s campaign to produce the dossier.

“We went through a lot of questions about a lot of things for which we got answers, but we were also stymied time and time and time again because the FBI counsel instructed him not to answer because it was, as she called it, an ongoing investigation,” Goodlatte said. “Now we have an ongoing investigation here as well.”

Strzok “was expected to answer questions regarding his involvement in both of these investigations. Not from this standpoint of the substance of the investigation but from the standpoint of what his role was in a contemporaneous time with some of the most unbelievably, outrageously biased, vulgar texts that he was exchanging at the same time that he was being introduced into this investigation,” Goodlatte said.

Goodlatte continued: “So questions regarding has he ever communicated with (Christopher) Steele, or Glenn Simpson, who is a journalist, or other matters like this to find out what his role was in the start of that investigation is critical to our investigation. And we need the answers to those questions. And we are now being blocked again from the FBI.”

Goodlatte said that some of Strzok’s testimony was “not believable” when it came to the “hateful nature” of his anti-Trump text messages.

“His explanations for … those questions about that hateful attitude are not believable,” Goodlatte told Fox News.

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