Sharing Classified Information

On Thursday The Daily Caller posted an article about something the Intelligence Community Inspector General (ICIG) found related to Hillary Clinton’s server that the FBI chose not to explore.

The article reports:

The Intelligence Community Inspector General (ICIG) found an “anomaly on Hillary Clinton’s emails going through their private server, and when they had done the forensic analysis, they found that her emails, every single one except four, over 30,000, were going to an address that was not on the distribution list,” Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas said during a hearing with FBI official Peter Strzok.

“It was going to an unauthorized source that was a foreign entity unrelated to Russia,” he added.

Gohmert said the ICIG investigator, Frank Rucker, presented the findings to Strzok, but that the FBI official did not do anything with the information.

Strzok acknowledged meeting with Rucker, but said he did not recall the “specific content.”

“The forensic examination was done by the ICIG and they can document that,” Gohmert said, “but you were given that information and you did nothing with it.”

The article further reports:

In late 2017, ICIG Chuck McCullough — who was appointed by former President Barack Obama —  took the unusual step of coming forward publicly to say that he perceived pushback after he began raising the alarm about issues with Clinton’s servers to then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.

He said he found it “maddening” that Democrats, including Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, were underselling the amount of classified information on the server.

McCullough said he “expected to be embraced and protected,” but was instead “chided” by someone on Capitol Hill for failing to consider the “political consequences” of his investigative findings, Fox News reported.

The ICIG has not publicly disclosed the findings Gohmert described in the meeting between Rucker and Strzok, but the congressman said the watchdog can document them.

It is time to retire the upper echelon of both the FBI and the DOJ. They either don’t know what they are doing or are so politically biased they can’t see past their noses. It is time for them to go before we turn into a republic where the government bureaucracy spies on anyone who disagrees with it and protects anyone who does.

There Are Reasons Congress Needs To See The Original, Unedited Documents

Fox News posted an article today about some questions that arose during the House Judiciary and Oversight committee hearings yesterday. Congressmen are questioning Inspector General Michael Horowitz about his recent report on the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s emails.

The article reports:

The House Judiciary and Oversight committees were questioning Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz over his bombshell report into FBI and DOJ misconduct during the Hillary Clinton email probe.

“The other thing that I would ask you to look into, there is growing evidence that 302s were edited and changed,” Meadows told Horowitz. “Those 302s, it is suggested that they were changed to either prosecute or not prosecute individuals. And that is very troubling.”

So-called “302s” are reports on witness interviews compiled by federal investigators. Horowitz said later he has additional information suggesting that the witness reports were changed after-the-fact in both the Clinton and Russia probes — a particularly alarming possibility given the IG report’s findings of bias in those investigations.

Horowitz suggested that the IG is reviewing information concerning modified 302s, saying his office intended to “follow up” on the matter.

In an article posted July 6, 2016, Townhall.com reminds us:

Director Comey added that Clinton and her senior aides had only been guilty of “extreme carelessness” in how they handled classified information, not “gross negligence.”

This is the law in question:

18 U.S.C. § 793 – U.S. Code – Unannotated Title 18. Crimes and Criminal Procedure § 793. Gathering, transmitting or losing defense information

(f)  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.

(The underline is mine).

When the report on Hillary Clinton’s email was changed, it was changed to avoid the legal term “gross negligence.” This was done to prevent Hillary Cllinton from being charged with a crime. That is the reason the investigators need to see original documents. That is the only way any of us will actually be able to find and end the corruption that has been revealed in the FBI and the Department of Justice.

Avoiding The Chain Of Command To Commit Mischief

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article about some of the ways the investigation of the Clinton email avoided the normal processes of the FBI.

The most telling part of the article is the following chart showing how the chain of command was purposely avoided:

The article quotes the Inspector General’s Report:

Lisa Page, who was Special Counsel to McCabe, became involved in the Midyear investigation after McCabe became the Deputy Director in February 2016. Page told the OIG that part of her function was to serve as a liaison between the Midyear team and McCabe.

Page acknowledged that her role upset senior FBI officials, but told the OIG that McCabe relied on her to ensure that he had the information he needed to make decisions, without it being filtered through multiple layers of management.

Several witnesses told the OIG that Page circumvented the official chain of command, and that Strzok communicated important Midyear case information to her, and thus to McCabe, without Priestap’s or Steinbach’s knowledge. McCabe said that he was aware of complaints about Page, and that he valued her ability to “spot issues” and bring them to his attention when others did not.

The article notes why McCabe’s role is significant:

McCabe has been the subject of concerns about political bias in the FBI’s handling of the case because of his family’s ties to the Clintons. Around the time of the investigation, McCabe’s wife received $700,000 from Terry McAuliffe, a close friend of the Clintons who ran Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign. The money was for McCabe’s wife to run for state senate, an unusual amount of money for that office.

Hopefully the Senate testimony expected in the near future will lead to some indictments and jail time for those involved in this corruption. If not, I see very little hope for the concept of equal justice under the law. It truly is time to drain the swamp. It just keeps smelling worse.

 

Do Felonies Even Matter Anymore?

There is a lot of information slowly dribbling out of the Inspector General’s (IG) Report on the Clinton email investigation. One of the disturbing things is the seeming disregard by the Mid-Year-Exam (MYE) team (the team that was investigating Hillary Clinton’s private server) for basic protocols. The information regarding the use of personal email accounts is found on page 424 of the IG Report.

The Conservative Treehouse is reporting today:

One of the interesting aspects of the IG report is the documented use of personal email by participants within the FBI “small group” Mid-Year-Exam (MYE) team. [pg 424]

One of those documented examples involves FBI Agent Peter Strzok downloading the content of the sealed Anthony Weiner Indictment, October 29, 2016, to his personal email address. Unauthorized extraction of a ‘sealed SDNY indictment‘, and transmission to a non-secure system, is a felony.

No  wonder no one wanted to indict Hillary Clinton–they were all doing the same thing!

The article includes further information from the IG Report:

[…]  During our review, we identified several instances where Strzok used his personal email account for government business.  […]  Most troubling, on October 29, 2016, Strzok forwarded from his FBI account to his personal email account an email about the proposed search warrant the Midyear team was seeking on the Weiner laptop.

This email included a draft of the search warrant affidavit, which contained information from the Weiner investigation that appears to have been under seal at the time in the Southern District of New York and information obtained pursuant to a grand jury subpoena issued in the Eastern District of Virginia in the Midyear investigation.

The footnotes here are interesting:

fn #217 reads: ” The OIG previously notified the respective U.S. Attorney’s Offices about Strzok’s actions.”

fn #218 reads: “We requested access to Strzok’s personal email account. Strzok agreed to produce copies of work-related emails in his personal account but declined to produce copies of his personal emails. Strzok subsequently told the OIG that he had reviewed the emails residing in his personal mailboxes and found no work-related communications. We determined that we lacked legal authority to obtain the contents of Strzok’s personal email account from his email provider, which requires an Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) search warrant to produce email contents. Strzok’s email provider’s policy applies to opened emails and emails stored for more than 180 days, which ECPA otherwise permits the government to obtain using a subpoena and prior notice to the subscriber. See 18 U.S.C. § 2703(a), (b)(1)(B)(i); COMPUTER CRIME AND INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY SECTION, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, SEARCHING AND SEIZING COMPUTERS AND OBTAINING ELECTRONIC EVIDENCE IN CRIMINAL INVESTIGATIONS at 129-30 (2009). In addition, although we learned that a non-FBI family member had access to Strzok’s personal email account in 2017, Strzok told the OIG that no one else had access to his personal email account during the period in question (i.e., late October 2016).”

The article concludes:

Knowing the nature of all FBI investigative benefits-of-doubt previously afforded throughout 2015 and 2016; do you think the FBI DC team didn’t immediately notify Team Clinton directly or through some facilitating channel?

Perhaps the answer to that question outlines why Peter Strzok suddenly found a need to download the sealed SDNY Weiner indictment and transfer it to his personal email?

Curioser and curiouser…

As more and more people begin to analyze the IG Report, we will likely find more very odd actions taken by the FBI in recent years.

How In The World Do We Fix This?

I am one disappointed granny right now. At one point in my working career I held a security clearance. I am married to someone who at various points in his career held a security clearance. The rules were explained to us. We were expected to follow them. Excuses for not following the rules were not acceptable. So why isn’t Hillary Clinton at least charged with one of the crimes she is guilty of? Could anyone else destroy subpoenaed evidence and still be walking around? Did anyone in the Obama administration have any respect for classified documents and government archives?

Here is one excerpt from the Inspector General’s (IG) Report (from page xii):

As we also describe in Chapter Twelve, we learned during the course of our review that Comey, Strzok, and Page used their personal email accounts to conduct FBI business.

We identified numerous instances in which Comey used a personal email account to conduct unclassified FBI business. We found that, given the absence of exigent circumstances and the frequency with which the use of personal email occurred, Comey’s use of a personal email account for unclassified FBI business to be inconsistent with Department policy.

We found that Strzok used his personal email accounts for official government business on several occasions, including forwarding an email from his FBI account to his personal email account about the proposed search warrant the Midyear team was seeking on the Weiner laptop. This email included a draft of the search warrant affidavit, which contained information from the Weiner investigation that appears to have been under seal at the time in the Southern District of New York and information obtained pursuant to a grand jury subpoena issued in the Eastern District of Virginia in the Midyear investigation. We refer to the FBI the issue of whether Strzok’s use of personal email accounts violated FBI and Department policies.

The law requires the use of government email accounts in order for records to be archived. It seems as if a number of people in the Obama administration chose not to comply with that law.

The IG Report also sheds some light on the leaking from the FBI:

We identified numerous FBI employees, at all levels of the organization and with no official reason to be in contact with the media, who were nevertheless in frequent contact with reporters. Attached to this report as Attachments E and F are two link charts that reflect the volume of communications that we identified between FBI employees and media representatives in April/May and October 2016. We have profound concerns about the volume and extent of unauthorized media contacts by FBI personnel that we have uncovered during our review.

In addition, we identified instances where FBI employees improperly received benefits from reporters, including tickets to sporting events, golfing outings, drinks and meals, and admittance to nonpublic social events. We will separately report on those investigations as they are concluded, consistent with the Inspector General Act, other applicable federal statutes, and OIG policy.

The harm caused by leaks, fear of potential leaks, and a culture of unauthorized media contacts is illustrated in Chapters Ten and Eleven of our report, where we detail the fact that these issues influenced FBI officials who were advising Comey on consequential investigative decisions in October 2016. The FBI updated its media policy in November 2017, restating its strict guidelines concerning media contacts, and identifying who is required to obtain authority before engaging members of the media, and when and where to report media contact. We do not believe the problem is with the FBI’s policy, which we found to be clear and unambiguous. Rather, we concluded that these leaks highlight the need to change what appears to be a cultural attitude among many in the organization.

It is obvious from the text messages in the IG Report that the political culture of the FBI was very biased toward Hillary Clinton and against Donald Trump. Does anyone believe that anything was leaked to the press that would have hurt Hillary Clinton’s campaign and helped the Trump campaign?

The disclosures in the IG Report are a disgrace, and yet the report does not really go far enough.

On Page xi, the IG Report states:

We were deeply troubled by text messages exchanged between Strzok and Page that potentially indicated or created the appearance that investigative decisions were impacted by bias or improper considerations. Most of the text messages raising such questions pertained to the Russia investigation, which was not a part of this review. Nonetheless, when one senior FBI official, Strzok, who was helping to lead the Russia investigation at the time, conveys in a text message to another senior FBI official, Page, “No. No he won’t. We’ll stop it” in response to her question “[Trump’s] not ever going to become president, right? Right?!”, it is not only indicative of a biased state of mind but, even more seriously, implies a willingness to take official action to impact the presidential candidate’s electoral prospects. This is antithetical to the core values of the FBI and the Department of Justice.

So what are you going to do about it? In an interview last night Devin Nunes pointed out that the IG Report was the first time he had seen the above text message. Why was this message not included with documents requested by the House Committee?

As I said, I am one discouraged granny. I want to believe that all Americans receive equal justice under the law, but looking at the IG Report and the people who are not currently facing jail time, I really wonder.

Some Things To Consider As We Await The Inspector General’s Report

Real Clear Politics posted an article today by Victor Davis Hansen that reminds us of the recent history of Inspectors General. The article is titled, “The Silencing of the Inspectors General.”

The article reminds us:

For nearly eight years, the Obama administration sought to cover up serial wrongdoing by waging a veritable war against the watchdog inspectors general of various federal agencies.

In 2014, 47 of the nation’s 73 inspectors general signed a letter alleging that Obama had stonewalled their “ability to conduct our work thoroughly, independently, and in a timely manner.”

The frustrated nonpartisan auditors cited systematic Obama administration refusals to turn over incriminating documents that were central to their investigations.

The administration had purportedly tried to sidetrack an IG investigation into possible misconduct by then-Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson. In addition, the Obama administration reportedly thwarted IG investigations of Amtrak, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Troubled Asset Relief Program and the Office of Management and Budget.

Despite the campaign against these independent federal auditors, a number of inspectors general still managed to issue damning indictments of unethical behavior.

In 2012, Horowitz recommended that 14 Justice Department and ATF officials be disciplined for their conduct in the “Fast and Furious” gun-walking scandal.

A 2013 IG audit found that the IRS had targeted conservative groups for special scrutiny prior to the 2012 Obama re-election effort.

The article cites the 2014 audit that revealed that the CIA had hacked Senate Intelligence Committee’s computers. In 2016, it was revealed that Hillary Clinton had never sought approval for her private email server. Obviously the Inspectors General were not successful in holding people in government accountable for their actions in these various scandals. The Inspectors General do not have the power the criminally prosecute, but they can refer people for criminal prosecution. Obviously, there are a number of cases where this needs to be done.

The article concludes:

Soon, various inspector general reports may appear concerning FISA court abuse and improper behavior at the Department of Justice, FBI, CIA and National Security Council during the 2016 campaign cycle. The investigators are, for the most part, Obama appointees, not Trump appointees.

At some point, the idea of toothless inspectors general needs to be revisited. Something is terribly wrong when dozens of IGs found wrongdoing, only to object that their efforts were being thwarted by an Obama administration that had appointed most of them — and claimed to be scandal-free.

Finding government abuse and doing nothing about it is worse than not finding any at all.

There Are Definitely A Lot Of Alligators In The Swamp

Yesterday Sara Carter posted an article on her website about the long-awaited (and we are still waiting) Inspector General’s report of the Hillary Clinton email server investigation.

The article reports:

The Department of Justice and the FBI are deliberately attempting to slow roll and redact significant portions of DOJ Inspector General, Michael Horowitz’s report on the bureau’s handling of the Hillary Clinton investigation, according to numerous congressional officials and investigators.

The 400-page report, which was completed several weeks ago and addresses Clinton’s use of her private server for government business, is currently being reviewed by the DOJ and FBI. According to sources, individuals mentioned in the reports are also allowed to review the document. It is expected to be “long and thorough” and will criticize the handling of the investigation by former FBI Director James Comey, who has spent the better part of the past several months promoting his book A Higher Loyalty.

Hillary Clinton is said to have stated in an email to Donna Brazile, “If that f***ing bastard wins, we’re all going to hang from nooses!!!!” I think we are beginning to see what she was talking about. The swamp is fighting the release of information related to what went on during the 2016 election campaign. I honestly don’t know if there are enough honest people left in our government to be able to expose the use of the Justice Department and FBI for political purposes that obviously occurred.

The article concludes:

In a turn of events, Democrats later changed their position on Comey after President Trump fired him at the request of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who stated that he failed in leading the investigation into Clinton.

“The director was wrong to usurp the Attorney General’s authority on July 5, 2016, and announce his conclusion that the case should be closed without prosecution,” Rosenstein wrote in his May 9, 2017 letter.

The letter continued:

It is not the function of the Director to make such an announcement. At most, the Director should have said the FBI had completed its investigation and presented its findings to federal prosecutors. The Director now defends his decision by asserting that he believed Attorney General Loretta Lynch had a conflict. However, the FBI Director is never empowered to supplant federal prosecutors and assume command of the Justice Department. There is a well-established process for other officials to step in when a conflict requires the recusal of the Attorney General. On July 5, however, the Director announced his own conclusions about the nation’s most sensitive criminal investigation, without the authorization of duly appointed Justice Department leaders.

Now, however, it is Rod Rosenstein who is overseeing Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into alleged collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, as obstruction for firing Comey.

Get out the popcorn, there is going to be a show.

The Dangers Of The Mueller Investigation

Yesterday Mark Penn posted an article at The Hill stating that it is time to end Robert Mueller’s investigation.

The article reminds us:

At this point, there is little doubt that the highest echelons of the FBI and the Justice Department broke their own rules to end the Hillary Clinton “matter,” but we can expect the inspector general to document what was done or, more pointedly, not done. It is hard to see how a yearlong investigation of this won’t come down hard on former FBI Director James Comey and perhaps even former Attorney General Loretta Lynch, who definitely wasn’t playing mahjong in a secret “no aides allowed” meeting with former President Clinton on a Phoenix airport tarmac.

With this report on the way and congressional investigators beginning to zero in on the lack of hard, verified evidence for starting the Trump probe, current and former intelligence and Justice Department officials are dumping everything they can think of to save their reputations.

The article states:

This process must now be stopped, preferably long before a vote in the Senate. Rather than a fair, limited and impartial investigation, the Mueller investigation became a partisan, open-ended inquisition that, by its precedent, is a threat to all those who ever want to participate in a national campaign or an administration again.

The tactics in this investigation are designed to make people think twice before they participate in a Republican campaign. Michael Flynn and Michael Caputo have both been essentially bankrupted because of their connection with the Trump administration and the Trump campaign. (articles here and here)

The article concludes:

The president’s lawyers need to extend their new aggressiveness from words to action, filing complaints with the Justice Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility on the failure of Mueller and Rosenstein to recuse themselves and going into court to question the tactics of the special counsel, from selective prosecutions on unrelated matters, illegally seizing Government Services Administration emails, covering up the phone texts of FBI officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, and operating without a scope approved by the attorney general. (The regulations call for the attorney general to recuse himself from the investigation but appear to still leave him responsible for the scope.)

The final stopper may be the president himself, offering two hours of testimony, perhaps even televised live from the White House. The last time America became obsessed with Russian influence in America was the McCarthy hearings in the 1950s. Those ended only when Sen. Joseph McCarthy (R-Wis.) attacked an associate of the U.S. Army counsel, Joseph Welch, and Welch famously responded: “Sir, have you no decency?” In this case, virtually every associate and family member of the president has been subject to smears conveniently leaked to the press.

Stopping Mueller isn’t about one president or one party. It’s about all presidents and all parties. It’s about cleaning out and reforming the deep state so that our intelligence operations are never used against opposing campaigns without the firmest of evidence. It’s about letting people work for campaigns and administrations without needing legal defense funds. It’s about relying on our elections to decide our differences.

In 2016 (and beyond) the leadership of the FBI and Department of Justice were much more of a danger to our Republic than the Russians were.

More Fallout From The Inspector General’s Report

Yesterday The Washington Times posted an article about information included in the Inspector General‘s report.

The article reports:

Tucked inside the inspector general’s report on former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe was the story of an August 2016 phone call from a high-ranking Justice Department official who Mr. McCabethought was trying to shut down the FBI’s investigation into the Clinton Foundation while Hillary Clintonwas running for president.

The official was “very pissed off” at the FBI, the report says, and demanded to know why the FBI was still pursuing the Clinton Foundation when the Justice Department considered the case dormant.

Former FBI officials said the fact that a call was made is even more stunning than its content.

 James Wedick, who conducted corruption investigations at the bureau, said he never fielded a call from the Justice Department about any of his cases during 35 years there. He said it suggested interference.

“It is bizarre — and that word can’t be used enough — to have the Justice Department call the FBI’s deputy director and try to influence the outcome of an active corruption investigation,” he said. “They can have some input, but they shouldn’t be operationally in control like it appears they were from this call.”

Although the inspector general’s report did not identify the caller, former FBI and Justice Departmentofficials said it was Matthew Axelrod, who was the principal associate deputy attorney general — the title the IG report did use.

The article continues with some very curious events surrounding the investigation into the Clinton Foundation. During the time of the investigation, McCabe’s wife was running for office in Virginia and received a $700,000 donation from an organization linked to Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a close friend of the Clintons.

The article concludes:

Those familiar with Justice Department operations said they don’t believe the principal associate deputy attorney general would have made the McCabe call without consulting with his supervisor, which would have been Ms. Yates.

“In my experience these calls are rarely made in a vacuum,” said Bradley Schlozman, who worked as counsel to the PADAG during the Bush administration. “The notion that the principle deputy would have made such a decision and issued a directive without the knowledge and consent of the deputy attorney general is highly unlikely.”

Hans von Spakovsky, a former Justice Department official who is now a legal fellow at the conservative Heritage Foundation, said the proper chain of command for the Justice Department to follow up on an investigation would involve the head of the Criminal Division, not the PADAG, calling the FBI.

“There is no way I would have ever called the FBI on my own unless I raised concerns with my boss or my boss told me to do so,” he said. “I have a hard time believing this guy did this without consulting with Sally Yates unless he was a complete lone ranger and off the reservation.”

The inspector general is examining the way the FBI and Justice Department handled investigations into Mrs. Clinton during the election.

The report on Mr. McCabe was a separate matter, stemming from questions about a media leak he made to try to protect his reputation, the inspector general said.

There is another Inspector General’s report due out shortly. It is my hope that the corruption that is attached to the Clintons and possibly others high up in our government will be revealed and dealt with.

The Link To The Report

This is the link to the Department of Justice Inspector General‘s Report titled, “A Report of Investigation of Certain Allegations Relating to Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.” I am posting the link with no commentary–I believe readers are quite capable of drawing their own conclusions after reading the report themselves.

Getting Closer To The Truth

Yesterday The Conservative Treehouse posted an article about the ongoing struggle to get documents requested from the Department of Justice (DOJ) to the House Judiciary Committee.

The article reports:

Tomorrow Attorney General Jeff Sessions will announce the assignment of U.S. Attorney John Lausch to facilitate the production of documents from the DOJ (Horowitz/Huber) to the House Judiciary Committee, and Chairman Bob Goodlatte.

Mr. Lausch is a Trump appointed U.S. Attorney from outside Washington DC.  John Lausch currently heads the Northern District of Illinois which includes Chicago, and this specific U.S. Attorney has extensive experience in complex cases of conspiracy and political corruption; a key skill-set given the issues within the Horowitz/Huber investigation of potential politicization of the FBI and DOJ offices.

So what does this mean? This is the next step toward the release of the Inspector General‘s (IG) report and an effort to make sure the report that comes out is free of political meddling by the FBI and DOJ.

The article explains some of the process involved in releasing the IG report:

There’s a phase in the OIG report process where statements of fact go through an exhaustive draft vetting process within agency. The “source vetting” or “reference-audit” phase is part of the target -and internal review audit- prior to final draft & ultimately publication.

The raw investigative information, used as the foundation for the report, has to be vetted, re-checked, verified and reviewed for placement and footnotes in the draft report, before ANY of that source information is released.

FBI Director Christopher Wray previously assigned 54 staff to go through the IG source draft information (investigative documents) to validate baseline facts prior to release to congress. This process also scans for classified information.

These FBI staff are vetting the underlying evidence that’s noted in Horowitz’s draft notification document. Remember, many of these elements are also potentially criminal actions individually; and quite likely, in the aggregate, also the broad outlines of a criminal conspiracy amid all of the participants.

The activities illustrated by the already released emails indicate some criminal actions. There was a group of people working within the government to unseat a duly-elected President. That is not legal activity and needs to be dealt with by the appropriate authorities.

The article describes the activities under investigation:

However, given the reality that politicization of the FBI and DOJ underpins the origination of the investigation that generated the underlying evidence, in order to ensure any internal FBI conflicts do not arise amid document selection, John Lausch will be involved.

U.S. Attorney Lausch review will ensure the FBI does not hide, or marginalize any OIG investigative findings.

You can call it a soft-coup, or you can call it politicization of the DOJ and FBI, but the end result is the same – the intentional effort to manipulate, influence, and ultimately subvert an election for the presidency of the United States.

This needs to be dealt with severely so that it never happens again.

Getting Rid Of The Deep State Is A Slow Methodical Process

I am sure that I am not the only person who gets discouraged and impatient about the seeming lack of speed in dealing with the corruption that seems to run rampant in Washington. However, it seems like things are happening outside the public eye that should give us all hope that the mess in the Justice Department, FBI, and other places will be cleaned up. One of the major problems is leaks to the media, which can seriously hamper an investigation. Unfortunately we have seen a lot of leaks, generally from people with a political agenda.

Yesterday The Conservative Treehouse posted an article about the investigation into Washington corruption. The article included some things that should cause the average America to be mildly optimistic.

The article reports:

Today chairman Bob Goodlatte sends a formal subpoena to the DOJ (Inspector General Michael Horowitz) for documents regarding the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s private email server, potential abuses of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, and the FBI’s Office of Professional Responsibility recommendation to fire former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.

The article notes the response:

You can read the Goodlatte Subpoenas – HERE – along with the letter that accompanies his demand.   However, more important is the response from the DOJ as communicated by Fox News journalist Chad Pergram (emphasis mine):

So exactly what is going on here?  The article explains:

Oh, what’s that? Yes, the DOJ has to review the demand for evidence because release of those documents might conflict with ongoing Grand Jury information (evidence). Yes, that means a Grand Jury is impaneled, exactly as we expected.

Yes, that also means there are “law enforcement actions” currently ongoing as a result of the prosecutor assigned to reviewing the evidence discovered by Inspector General Horowitz.

Congress keeps asking for another Special Counsel. The author of the article at The Conservative Treehouse opines that he believes that Congress has not been informed that there is a Grand Jury investigating the corruption at the DOJ and FBI.

The article further reports:

Within this specific investigation there is a triple role. ¹A DOJ Inspector General conducting an internal investigation; ² Appropriate congressional oversight; and ³ the collection of evidence that might also be used in criminal indictments.

Within the IG collection of evidence there are two competing issues: #1) Evidence of misconduct and political bias (shared openly with congress and oversight); and #2) evidence of illegal activity (retained from congress to preserve integrity of evidence for later used in criminal proceedings); this is where the “outside DC prosecutor” comes in.

The article reminds us where this is leading and of the uproar we can expect from the media when it comes together. The article also encourages us to be patient:

You and I might be frustrated with the pace of the activity for a myriad of righteous reasons.  However, we must also remind ourselves of the scale and scope of the corruption here that is inherent within the BIG PICTURE.  All of this was done on purpose.  None of this was accidental.

The prosecutor could, likely would, be having to outline the biggest political conspiracy in the history of politics.  It is entirely possible officials within the CIA, NSA, DOJ, FBI, State Department, ODNI, and national security apparatus along with the Obama White House, Clinton campaign officials, politicians, career bureaucrats and possibly judges are all entwined and involved.

Add into this likelihood the complicit ideological media who will go absolutely bananas about any single member of their team being indicted; and a better than average chance the media will follow instructions from their leadership and send tens-of-thousands of low-info sycophants into the streets in protest, and well… you see the picture.

The left only know one narrative: “Jeff Sessions is doing Trump’s evil bidding.” That’s it. That’s the drumbeat. 24/7/365 That’s the narrative pushed over and over.

Just look at the media reaction to Andrew McCabe’s simple firing, which Trump had nothing to do with, and think about what their response would be to indictments?

Get out the popcorn.

The Inspector General’s Report And Real Collusion

Kevin McCullough posted an article at Townhall today about the investigation into Russian collusion and the upcoming Inspector General‘s report. Anyone who is following the Russian collusion story on their own rather than listening to the mainstream media, is aware that there has been some serious wrongdoing in the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Department of Justice (DOJ). The corruption goes back a long time. I first became aware of the corruption in the DOJ when I watched how the voter intimidation case involving the New Black Panthers in Philadelphia was handled. There was a video that showed voter intimidation, and the Justice Department dropped the charges against them (article here). The leaks coming from the FBI that undermine the presidency have been numerous, and no one seems to be held responsible. Congress is no better–one Congressman said that the House Intelligence Committee leaks like a sieve. So where do we go from here.

The firing of Andrew McCabe is the first step, but there is much more to come.

The article at Townhall reports:

Few remember, though my radio show discussed at length, the reports that surfaced in October of 2016. In reaction to the bizarre July 5th announcement by then FBI director James Comey, FBI officials revealed that members of the DOJ and FBI investigative teams that had worked the Hillary email case were “angered & disgusted” that the co-opted DOJ and FBI leadership ignored the very real analysis of evidence and decided against bringing criminal indictment against Hillary Clinton for the handling of top secret information. More than 100 FBI agents that worked the case, and more than 6 DOJ attorneys expressed their disgust, according to a source within the group. 

It was later revealed that Comey had been prepared to exonerate Clinton in February of that year when he would yet not interview her until months later. She was also granted an interview, instead of being asked to testify under oath.

The article goes on to list various misdeeds of people in the FBI regarding the handling and leaking of information to damage the President.

The article concludes:

There was collusion in the election of 2016. It involved Russians, a British ex-spy, law firms, FBI agents, DOJ attorneys, an FBI director that prejudged evidence, an Attorney General that had an unethical meeting with the spouse of a target, FISA warrants obtained on faulty information that stemmed from political sources, a Deputy Director whose wife received monetary support in an election, an FBI director who lied to Congress, an FBI Deputy Director who lied to the Justice Department’s Inspector General, loads of classified materials that were mishandled and criminally passed to those without clearances, and partisan hacks spearheading inquiries aiming for political outcomes. The scope of this collusion is overwhelming, the attempts are a damning indictment of political operatives that have lost all integrity, and sadly an administration, a major political party, and agents of a deep state that attempted in a wide sweeping number of ways to undo an election that they lost.

Former high-ranking FBI officials (like Chris Swetzer who appeared with Harris Faulkner’s FoxNews broadcast on Friday) believe that the Inspector General’s coming report will be explosive.

For the sake of justice, above all else, I hope it brings clarity to a story our modern media landscape is highly invested in keeping as convoluted as possible.

The Inspector General’s report is due out in a matter of weeks. Although the Inspector General does not have the right to prosecute crimes or to interview witnesses outside of the government. That is why many Republicans are asking for an additional Special Prosecutor to cover areas outside the areas covered by the Inspector General.

It is becoming obvious that some of the upper levels of the FBI and DOJ have become politicized. Hopefully the firing of Andrew McCabe is the beginning of solving that problem.

Hanged On Hayman’s Gallows

In the book of Ester in the Bible, there is a character called Haman. Haman is an ambitious character who loves status, money, and power. He is honored by the king and expects all citizens of the kingdom to bow down before him. Mordecai is a Jewish man who refuses to bow down to Haman. As a result of this perceived affront, Haman plans to kill all of Mordecai’s people (the Jews) and hang Mordecai. Ester intervenes, the Jews are saved, we have the Jewish holiday of Purim, and Haman is hanged on the gallows he built for Mordecai. The current situation with the Russian investigation, corruption at the highest levels of the FBI, and massive leaks to the press to undermine President Trump is beginning to look a lot like the book of Ester.

Based on the emails we have all seen, I suspect the ‘Russia’ story began officially in the office of Andrew McCabe. Hillary blamed the Russians the night she lost the election, but I have no idea if she knew what was being planned at the FBI if Donald Trump won. So some senior officers at the FBI set out to unseat a duly-elected President. Wow. It’s amazing that they have not been charged with treason, but the story isn’t over yet either.

The plan unfolds with numerous leaks to the press, use of personal connections to a judge on the FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978) court, withholding information from the FISA court, and lying to Congress and the Inspector General. Remember, the plan is to remove President Trump from office before he can accomplish anything. So where are we now?

Yesterday Paul Mirengoff posted an article at Power Line about the firing of Andrew McCabe as Deputy Director of the FBI. Andrew McCabe was fired yesterday. Paul Mirengoff is a lawyer, and the articles he posts at Power Line are very clear and very logically thought out. His article on the firing of Andrew McCabe is an example of that clarity and logic. The article reminds us of a few important points in this story that may get overlooked by the mainstream media.

The article reports:

McCabe promptly issued an angry statement. He claimed, among other things, that his dismissal was part of the Trump’s administration’s “ongoing war on the FBI and the efforts of the Special Counsel investigation” and was the result of pressure from President Trump.

It seems likely that McCabe will seek legal redress. However, he may end of fighting on two legal fronts — criminal and civil. A prosecution for making false statements might well be in McCabe’s future.

As to the firing, it was recommended by the FBI office that handles discipline. The recommendation was based on findings by the DOJ’s inspector general investigation. The IG found that McCabe authorized the disclosure of sensitive information to the media about a Clinton-related case and then misled investigators about having done so.

If these findings are valid, they warrant firing. Unless McCabe can point to high level DOJ employees who were found to have engaged in similar misconduct but were not fired, I doubt he has much of a case (assuming, again, that the findings of misconduct are well-supported). That, at least, is my impression on first blush.

…But if the discharge decision has a strong factual basis, if (as is the case) it was recommended to Sessions through normal DOJ channels, and if it’s consistent with past practice, then the decision seems just and proper, whatever Trump has tweeted. In these circumstances, it ought to be upheld.

This is going to get ugly, but it is the beginning of the next phase of draining the swamp.

Part Of The Swamp Currently Being Ignored

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted a story about Hina Alvi, wife of Imran Awan. Imran Awan and Hina Alvi were information technology staffers who worked for Representative Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and other Democrat congressmen.

In case you have forgotten:

  1. Imran Awan was arrested on charges of bank fraud, but that is only a small part of the story.
  2. Mr. Awan and a number of members of his family were employed by multiple Congressmen. When Mr. Awan reached the salary cap for his job, he would hire another family member. This continued, evidently with little regard to the computer skills of the hired family member.
  3. Mr. Awan at one point set up an alias account that allowed him to access Congressional servers after he was denied access. At one point after he was denied access, a significant data download occurred under his alias account. Mr. Awan claimed that the data download was his elementary school child’s homework, but the download involved thousands of pages. Most elementary school homework does not involve thousands of pages. It was also noted that the size of the data breach was such that it could not have been done over the internet—it had to be done using a thumb drive or similar piece of equipment.
  4. It is quite possible that the leakage of information regarding the Democratic National Committee came from Mr. Awan. At the time Mr. Awan was employed by Representative Wasserman-Schultz, she was chairman of Democratic National Committee.

Hina Alvi was stopped at the airport on her way to Pakistan with a substantial amount of money. The FBI let her go.

The article reports:

For nearly a year since, the case has lingered despite the House Office of Inspector General (OIG) determining that the family of Pakistanis made “unauthorized access” to Congress’s data shortly before the election.

Following revelations about the FBI’s actions in the investigation into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s email server and Department of Justice officials’ handling of the Trump dossier, attention has turned to the agencies’ apparently lax attitude toward the congressional cyber breach case as perhaps the most jarring failure to enforce laws in cases that overlap politics.

The OIG alleged Imran Awan and his family members logged into servers of congressmen for whom they did not work, logged in using members’ personal usernames, covered their tracks, and continued to access data after they’d been fired.

Though the findings place the case squarely into the category of political cyber-crimes that have otherwise been high-profile priorities, the lead FBI agent assigned to the Awan case was a first-year agent, and not from one of the FBI’s big-guns divisions. The charges brought by prosecutors are so minor that Awan’s own lawyer speculated they could be a “placeholder” for future charges.

Server logs of government computers backed up the OIG’s findings. Yet six months after the initial charges, no additional counts have been brought, raising the question of whether the DOJ is seriously investigating the potential national security breach.

The article concludes:

Hosko (Ron Hosko, the FBI’s former assistant director) said six months in, DOJ has all the tools it needs and cannot blame the House, and inaction can only indicate a lack of desire to pursue the case.

“I would hope the Capitol Police are being forthcoming with the U.S. attorney, not just telling them a part of what’s gone on here,” Hosko said, alluding to the House’s characterization of the incident as a “theft” case. “But with these circumstances, [DOJ] can’t put their head in the sand. You can’t just say, ‘Well, someone on the Hill said it’s Speech and Debate.’ There’s certainly a way around it. This is [ Attorney General Jeff] Sessions, and there’s a new mindset in DOJ.”

(Michael Marando is the prosecutor. Since the case began, President Donald Trump appointed a new U.S. attorney, Jessie Liu.)

“I don’t see it as [members] having the opportunity to press charges — the government is the victim,” Hosko said.

If prosecutors don’t act, Hosko said, higher-level officials could consider moving the case. “It could be the Eastern District of Virginia has jurisdiction as well,” he said.

Their next court date is March 8.

There are some familiar names in this case:

Ron Hosko, the FBI’s former assistant director, said the agent on the case is “getting marginalized on the thing, he doesn’t have the bigger picture.” He said the facts in the case plainly call for the resources of both the FBI’s counterintelligence division and the public corruption unit. Peter Strzok, who sought to close down the investigation into Clinton’s emails before the intelligence community IG found classified materials, and who repeatedly voiced his support for Democrats, was deputy assistant director of the FBI’s counterintelligence division.

It is becoming very obvious that the corruption at the top of the FBI has been there for a while and has been working against the interests of the American people. It is long past time to clean house.

Notice that we haven’t heard anything about this scandal from the mainstream media for a while.

Complex Scandals Generally Don’t Make Mainstream Media Headlines–Aside From The Politics, They Are Too Hard To Follow

The Conservative Treehouse has been an excellent source to follow the corruption that was rampant in the Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation during the Obama Administration. The mainstream media has largely ignored this story partially for political reasons and partially because it is very complex and hard to follow. The mainstream media is simply hoping that the average American voter will ignore the story rather than sort through it. Hopefully they are wrong–many of the actions taken by the FBI and DOJ under the Obama Administration were illegal and should have jail terms attached to them. Whether or not they will remains to be seen.

These are some highlights from The Conservative Treehouse:

Proving, once again, this is a well thought-out strategy, Chuck Grassley’s newest partly declassified version of the Graham-Grassley memo highlights the DOJ didn’t care about Bruce Ohr meeting with Christopher Steele until Inspector General Michael Horowitz found out.

Page #5 of the Grassley Memo (pg. 7 pdf), highlights the FBI interviewed DOJ Deputy Attorney Bruce Ohr on November 22nd, and December 12th, 2016 [FD-302 Interview Notes], yet didn’t take any action about their discoveries until Inspector General Michael Horowitz found out and revealed the interviews on December 7th, 2017.

The article at The Conservative Treehouse includes screen shots and inserts of memos and letters backing up the claims made in the article.

More highlights:

The Devin Nunes HPSCI memo revealed that Fusion-GPS employee Nellie Ohr, was funneling Clinton Opposition research to her husband Bruce Ohr for use by the DOJ in assembling the ‘Clinton-Steele dossier’; as justification to acquire a FISA “Title 1” surveillance warrant; for retroactive surveillance authority against Carter Page and the Trump Campaign.

…Obviously the ‘small group’ within the DOJ and FBI didn’t have any issue with the activity of Bruce and Nellie Ohr during 2016 until IG Horowitz found out and exposed it in 2017.

After a few feeble attempts at brush back pitches… with the release of the lesser redacted memo, Senator Chuck Grassley took a 3-1 pitch and rocked a solid double off the wall, putting him on Second Base and Devin Nunes confidently standing on Third.

With no-one out, and first base open, the Democrats are stressed.

Adam Schiff calls for a pitching change as House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte steps up to the plate.

However, they can’t pitch around Goodlatte because clean-up hitter Horowitz is on deck. Schiff needs to bring the infield in close and hope for a double-play. They’re down to their last pitcher and he doesn’t look good.

In the next few months we are going to find out if the principle of equal justice under the law still applies in America.

Please follow the link at the beginning of this post to read the entire article. It is chilling that this was going on right under the noses of the oversight committee.

This Might Be The Reason Government Investigations Take So Long

It’s hard to get the job done when the person you are investigating won’t talk to you! The following video posted at YouTube is of State Department Inspector General Steve Linick testifying before the House Oversight Committee on July 7th, 2016, in which he revealed Hillary Clinton refused an interview request related to her email investigation.

This is part of the testimony as posted at The Gateway Pundit today:

Chaffetz: Were you able to interview Hillary Clinton?

Linick: we were not.

Chaffetz: Why not?

Linick: Well, we asked to interview secretary Clinton. We interviewed all of the secretaries. We looked at five Secretaries of State going back to Madeleine Albright and her, through counsel, she declined to meet with us.

Chaffetz: Did she indicate a reason why she would refuse to meet with the inspector general?

Linick: Her counsel informed our staff that she had — that all of the information about the e-mail was on the FAQ she published by her campaign.

The article at The Gateway Pundit further reports:

Howard Krongard, the State Department Inspector General from April 2005 to January 2008, told Fox News last May that Clinton did not follow standard practices in respect to private email usage.

“Certainly to my knowledge at least, Secretary Rice did not have a personal server. I certainly never either sent an email to one or received an email from one,” Krongard told Fox News

“I would have been stunned had I been asked to send an email to her at a personal server, private address. I would have declined to do so on security grounds and if she had sent one to me, I probably would have started an investigation,” added Krongard.

From what I have seen, I suspect that the emails are the least of Hillary Clinton’s worries about the Inspector General’s report. It is very obvious that laws were broken in Ms. Clinton‘s handling of classified information. It is also very obvious that an ordinary citizen would be in jail for similar crimes. I don’t necessarily wish Ms. Clinton jail time, but it would be nice to see her admit that she broke the law. If her email account was used to funnel money to the Clinton Foundation in return for political favors, she should be heavily fined and forced to return the money.

The Inspector General’s report is due out in January. It should be very interesting.

Behind The Scenes In The Inspector General Investigation Of The FBI and DOJ

Yesterday The Conservative Treehouse posted an article about the Congressional attempts to get information from Deputy FBI Director Andrew “Andy” McCabe and his role in the 2016 “Trump Project”.

Here are some highlights from the article:

♦It is increasingly clear the entire purpose of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe was not to investigate some nefarious and innocuous Russian election interference; but rather with a Trump victory the same people who weaponized the FBI and DOJ to conduct the “Trump Project” needed to generate a shield or firewall to protect them from sunlight. The Mueller probe is that shield.

…♦Secondly, the same FBI and DOJ officials, along with career FBI and DOJ lawyers and administrators, who are at risk from exposure within the plot, do not want to answer questions in public hearings. They are using closed sessions under the auspices of everything therein being “classified”. This venue and manner of testimony blocks congressional representatives from talking about the content publicly.

Everything is being structured to avoid public scrutiny. In essence these career co-conspirators are using the familiar DC system to protect themselves from ramifications of their plot reaching the public.

♦Having said that, it certainly appears we have one person on the side of justice who predicted this was going to happen. By all external appearances DOJ Office of Inspector General Michael Horowitz has moved proactively to set up as much transparency as possible upon his years-long investigation into the politicization of the FBI and DOJ.

The article goes on to list some of the things the Inspector General has released to the press in order to increase transparency in the FBI and DOJ:

IG Stimulated Releases of Information:

♦Release #1 was the FBI Agent Strzok and Attorney Lisa Page story; and the repercussions from discovering their politically motivated bias in the 2015/2016 Clinton email investigation and 2016/2017 Russian Election investigation.

♦Release #2 outlined the depth of FBI Agent Strzok and FBI Attorney Page’s specific history in the 2016 investigation into Hillary Clinton to include the changing of the wording [“grossly negligent” to “extremely careless”] of the probe outcome delivered by FBI Director James Comey.

♦Release #3 was the information about DOJ Deputy Bruce Ohr being in contact with Fusion GPS at the same time as the FISA application was submitted and granted by the FISA court; which authorized surveillance and wiretapping of candidate Donald Trump; that release also attached Bruce Ohr and Agent Strzok directly to the Steele Dossier.

♦Release #4 was information that Deputy Bruce Ohr’s wife, Nellie Ohr, was an actual contract employee of Fusion GPS, and was hired by F-GPS specifically to work on opposition research against candidate Donald Trump. Both Bruce Ohr and Nellie Ohr are attached to the origin of the Christopher Steele Russian Dossier.

♦Release #5 was the specific communication between FBI Agent Strzok and FBI Attorney Page. The 10,000 text messages that included evidence of them both meeting with Asst. FBI Director Andrew McCabe to discuss the “insurance policy” against candidate Donald Trump in August of 2016.

The Inspector General’s report is due out in January. If the media chooses to report on it, I suspect it will be very interesting reading for all Americans. I also expect that it may put an abrupt end to the idea that President Trump colluded with the Russians.

Where The Social Security Money Goes

We have heard all sorts of horror stories that Social Security will go bankrupt if the benefits are not cut. We have heard stories that the younger people paying in will never see a penny of their money. We have heard stories of benefits being limited for those Americans who actually saved for retirement. We have heard very few stories of how the Social Security Administration spends the money it has.

Yesterday The Washington Free Beacon posted a story about how some of the money taken in by the Social Security Administration was spent.

The article reports:

The Social Security Administration billed taxpayers $32 million for work conferences, according to a new audit.

The inspector general for the agency reported that just over 300 conferences cost taxpayers roughly $100,000 each in travel, meals, and lodging expenses during a three-year period.

The audit found that the agency mostly complied with federal reporting requirements to disclose conferences that cost $20,000 or more. The inspector general did find two instances where those conferences were not reported, because initial cost estimates fell below the $20,000 threshold.

Another reason to drain the swamp. How much of the money spent could have been used to shore up the program or provide Cost of Living Allowances for senior citizens?

 

Don’t Get Lost In The False Narrative

As I sit here writing this post, I am listening to the news. The news is telling me that a number of Democrats will not attend the inauguration of President Trump because they feel that he is an illegitimate President. Hopefully most Americans realize how ridiculous this charge is. However, there is a full-blown effort by the media and the political left to undermine Donald Trump before he is even sworn in as President.

Andrew McCarthy posted an article at National Review yesterday detailing one aspect of the attack on soon-to-be President Trump. The article deals with the strategy behind the Justice Department Inspector General’s review of some aspects of the Justice Department’s handing of the Hillary Clinton email scandal. Mr. McCarthy explains how the parameters of this investigation will make sure the investigation determines exactly what the political left wants the investigation to determine. It is important to note that the investigation will not look into the meeting between Bill Clinton and Loretta Lynch on the tarmac in Arizona during the Justice Department investigation of Hillary Clinton’s private server. They will not look into immunity granted to witnesses and evidence destroyed during the original investigation. They will not look at ways in which Mrs. Clinton‘s private server compromised national security. So what is going on here?

The article explains:

The aim is obvious: If Comey’s statements were against protocol, then they will be portrayed as violations that caused Clinton to lose — the argument will be that Trump’s victory was as razor thin as it gets, Clinton decisively won the popular vote, so surely Comey’s impropriety is what swung the few thousand votes Clinton would have needed in key states to win in the Electoral College. Therefore, the narrative goes: Trump’s victory, and thus his presidency, is illegitimate.

…The Democrats erase your first argument by reducing the whole election down to the e-mails investigation, such that Mrs. Clinton’s many other flaws as a candidate do not matter. The Democrats erase your second argument by making sure the IG investigation focuses on James Comey, not on Hillary Clinton’s crimes and the Justice Department’s outrageous machinations to make sure she was not prosecuted for those crimes.
There you have it. The public’s perception of Trump’s legitimacy may hinge on the public’s understanding of the Justice Department inspector-general’s probe. The Democrats fully grasp this and are lining things up so that they’ll win before Republicans even realize the game is on.

I hope most Americans will see through this dog and pony show. It is really sad that the political left is doing everything it can to damage the Presidency of Donald Trump even before he is sworn in. If Donald Trump is such a horrible person with such bad ideas, why not just sit back and wait for him to fail? It is disheartening to hear politicians on the left repeating charges that have no proof behind them as if they were fact. Unfortunately I think this is going to get worse. The only cure for the lying media is for Americans to stop listening to the mainstream media and their lies. Maybe at that point, the mainstream media will realize that it is in their best interests (and the interests of America) to report the truth.

One Example Of Why ObamaCare Needs To Be Repealed Immediately

The following excerpts are part of a Department of Health and Human Services Report from the Office of the Inspector General. The report states, “Colorado Did Not Correctly Expend Establishment Grant Funds For Establishing A Health Insurance Marketplace.” The report can be found on the Internet here.

The mission of the Office of Inspector General (OIG), as mandated by Public Law 95-452, as amended, is to protect the integrity of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) programs, as well as the health and welfare of beneficiaries served by those programs. This statutory mission is carried out through a nationwide network of audits, investigations, and inspections conducted by the following operating components:

Office of Audit Services

Office of Evaluation and Inspections

Office of Investigations

Office of Counsel to the Inspector General

The report explains why the agency did the review–the review was part of a series of reviews of establishment grants for State marketplaces across the Nation. You can read the details if you choose, but the details are not what is important here–what is important is that the Federal and State governments never work as well as the free market.

This is the list of what the review found:

1. The Colorado marketplace did not expend $9,678,635 of Federal establishment grant funds in accordance with Federal requirements. Specifically, the Colorado marketplace:did not adequately document $4,398,333 in costs that it charged to the establishment grants;

2. charged the establishment grants $4,504,799 for unallowable hardware and software operational support and maintenance contract costs whose periods of benefit occurred after December 31, 2014;

3. improperly transferred costs totaling $312,449 from one establishment grant to another without demonstrating that these cost transfers were performed to correct bookkeeping or clerical errors;

4. did not efficiently and effectively administer establishment grant funds totaling $463,054 consisting of improperly awarded executive and employee bonuses, overpayments to subgrantees, unallowable promotional giveaway items, excessive and unreasonable tips, vendor rebates that were received but not credited to the establishment grants, and unallowable social activities;

5. drew down establishment grant funds that it did not immediately use;

6. entered into contracts with consultants and other contractors that did not conform to Federal and State requirements and the Colorado marketplace’s own policies on contract administration, including approval procedures and required contract information; and

7. engaged in a number of procedures and practices that, contrary to Federal requirements and cost principles and, in some cases, to the Colorado marketplace’s own  policies, (1) required the use of personal credit cards to purchase equipment, supplies, and services for the marketplace, (2) permitted self-approval of purchases on behalf of the previous executive staff, (3) permitted incomplete and inadequate disclosure of possible conflicts of interest, (4) did not properly document inventory of equipment, and (5) allowed the use of establishment grant funds to purchase equipment for a previous Chief Executive Officer (CEO) who kept it for personal use when the CEO left the organization.

These findings were caused by a lack of adequate stewardship of Federal funds. Specifically, the Colorado marketplace had not developed, finalized, and implemented policies and procedures to ensure that it expended and accounted for establishment grant funds in accordance with Federal, State, and Colorado marketplace requirements.

This is a chart showing the bonuses given:

Ed Morrissey at Hot Air posted an article about this report today.

The article concludes:

Later in the report, the IG explains that this was spent on a holiday party, with “cake, punch, holiday cards, and decorations.” Why the Colorado exchange felt it necessary to charge the federal government for those expenses will be one of the more interesting explanations we’ll hear … if we ever do hear it. At any rate, such expenses are explicitly prohibited from federal grants, as the IG points out in the report.

The whole report is damning for the arrogance of the bureaucracy when it came to spending federal grant money, especially on a flop like ObamaCare. One has to wonder just how many other states have used their federal grant money in such a cavalier manner, and for little purpose in the end.

It might be a good idea to note at this time what the planned future of ObamaCare actually was. Had Hillary Clinton been elected as President, the Democrats in Congress would have acknowledged that ObamaCare had failed and suggested a single-payer (read that ‘government run’) healthcare program similar to what Canada and the U.K. have to replace ObamaCare. When Donald Trump was elected, things got complicated for the Democrats. As I write this, they are fighting to preserve ObamaCare long enough so that it can fail and be replaced by single-payer healthcare. Hopefully the Republicans will not let that happen and will repeal ObamaCare quickly.

Let’s get the government out of healthcare.

 

 

 

 

Politicians Don’t Like Being Held Accountable

Generally speaking, politicians don’t like being held accountable. They don’t like being held to any standard of transparency either. This has been particularly true in the relationship between the Obama Administration and Judicial Watch. Judicial Watch is an equal opportunity government watchdog organization. The have investigated the Clinton Administration, the Bush Administration, and the Obama Administration.

Needless to say, they were more appreciated by Americans who wanted to hold their government accountable than they were by the administrations they were holding accountable. The Obama Administration, however, has reached a new low in its dealings with Judicial Watch.

On Thursday, The Washington Times reported that an Inspector General‘s report revealed the following:

Political operatives within the Obama administration wrongly punished conservative legal group Judicial Watch, stripping it of “media” status and trying to force it to pay higher fees for its open records requests, the General Services Administration inspector general said in a letter released Thursday.

The GSA botched several high-profile open records requests, delaying them for months while political appointees got involved, Inspector General Carol F. Ochoa said. The findings were released while the administration was facing charges of slow-walking open records requests for Hillary Clinton’s emails, as well as other requests.

In the case of Judicial Watch, the order to strip it of media status came from political operatives with long ties to Democratic causes — and even from the White House.

The inspector general said the decision came at the behest of Gregory Mecher, a former Democratic campaign fundraiser who at the time was liaison to the White House. He is married to Jen Psaki, a longtime spokeswoman with the Obama administration and its election campaigns.

 Ms. Ochoa said stripping Judicial Watch of media status violated several agency policies and things got worse when the GSA denied an appeal by the group.

The same person who ruled on the initial request also ruled on the appeal, “contrary to GSA procedures,” the inspector general said.

Judicial Watch ended up suing over the request, the agency finally agreed to waive all fees and even ended up paying Judicial Watch $750 as part of the settlement.

This is disgusting. We have entered a period of unbelievable corruption in Washington that reaches all the way to the top. We have had stories this year of archives of press conferences being altered after the fact to make the administration look better, now we have press credentials pulled on people simply doing a service to America.

Please follow the link and read the entire article. It is a basic course of the relationships among the elites in Washington. It truly is time to throw them all out!

Time For New Management

Yesterday The Washington Examiner posted a story yesterday that illustrates the poor management of the Veteran’s Administration.

The story reports:

The Department of Veterans Affairs’ Office of Inspector General (OIG) on Wednesday confirmed that more than one-third of the people thought to be seeking eligibility for VA benefits are deceased, and said many of them have been dead for more than four years.

The OIG report confirms the worst fears of members of Congress, whosaid in July that they would investigate unsubstantiated claims that thousands of veterans died before they ever became eligible for VA benefits.

Scott Davis, a VA employee and whistleblower, has dismissed the findings of the OIG. He claims that the independent investigator has no way of knowing how many veterans died seeking care. That may be, but if the number is one veteran, that is one too many.

The article states:

“We can’t say what’s what because of flaws in the enrollment system, and the flaws exist basically because the people responsible for fixing it haven’t,” he (Scott Davis) said.

Davis said the main official responsible for the VA’s Health Eligibility Center, Stephanie Mardon, should be fired for keeping such poor records, which even the OIG said is hurting efforts to get care to veterans. “Overstated pending enrollment records create unnecessary difficulty and confusion in identifying and assisting veterans with the most urgent need for health care enrollment,” it said.

But Davis also said the OIG report gives the VA, and the Obama administration, the tools it needs to start fixing the problem.

In July of 2014, Robert A. McDonald became Secretary of Veterans Affairs. It seems to me that there needs to be a way of mapping whatever progress he is making in fixing the problems the Veterans Administration has had in recent years. If things have not changed by July 2016, it is time to consider either replacing Secretary McDonald or disbanding the Veterans Administration and allowing veterans to seek medical care outside of the Veterans Administration at the same cost.

This May Be One Of Many Reasons ObamaCare Is So Expensive

On Tuesday, The Washington Free Beacon posted an article about an Inspector General audit of the Department of Health and Human Services. The purpose of the audit was to determine if the ObamaCare healthcare sign-up sites were monitoring the people who were signing up to see if they were eligible for ObamaCare.

The article reports:

The IG found that the internal controls did not always correctly verify Social Security numbers, citizenship status, annual household income, and family size information to determine eligibility.

One applicant understated her income by $7,000. According to the IG, the marketplace should have compared this income data to available electronic data sources and realized that the applicant’s income was more than 10 percent below the income listed on these data sources. Then, the marketplace should have asked the applicant for additional evidence of income.

Instead, this applicant was not only verified, but was approved to receive the advance premium tax credit.

Another example of weak internal controls was found in efforts to verify citizenship status. The marketplace did not always verify this information through the Social Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security, as was required.

The IG found that not only were there problems with internal controls, but once discrepancies were found, they were not handled properly.

…This report comes on the heels of a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report that found Healthcare.gov approved coverage for fake accounts. GAO performed undercover tests and fabricated personal data of fake applicants for coverage under Obamacare. In 11 of 12 of these fake applications, the online marketplace approved coverage and granted each account $30,000 in premium tax credits.

Sounds like a typical government program to me.

 

This Might Be Part Of The Problem

Hot Air posted an article today about Social Security Disability payments.

The article reports:

Social Security overpaid nearly half the people receiving disability benefits over the past decade, according to a government watchdog, raising questions about the management of the cash-strapped program.

In all, Social Security overpaid beneficiaries by nearly $17 billion, according to a 10-year study by the agency’s inspector general.

Many payments went to people who earned too much money to qualify for benefits, or to those no longer disabled. Payments also went to people who had died or were in prison.

Social Security was able to recoup about $8.1 billion, but it often took years to get the money back, the study said.

“Every dollar that goes to overpayments doesn’t help someone in need,” said Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa. “Given the present financial situation of the Social Security Disability Insurance trust fund, the program cannot sustain billions of dollars lost to waste.”

It is time to look into the management of Social Security. This sort of mistake would not be accepted in the private sector; there is no reason it should be accepted in government.

The article concludes:

Here’s an idea. One of the easier changes they could start with is to invest in more investigative resources using their massive government employee payroll and cut out the remaining waste and fraud. While doing their investigations, they could create some sort of code for those with obviously permanent disabilities and stop wasting time chasing them every couple of years. Between those two adjustments they could likely find more legitimate fraud and save money in the long run. We can save the battle over changes to the program until the wolves are truly at the door I suppose.