Author Topic: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey  (Read 4018 times)

DonaldD

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #50 on: May 19, 2017, 10:08:33 PM »
And then, of course, the President said this (according to the NYT): "I just fired the head of the FBI. He was crazy, a real nut job... I faced great pressure because of Russia. That's taken off."

Maybe he really is that stupid...

Pete at Home

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #51 on: May 19, 2017, 11:23:13 PM »
That, or he's the straw man that won by mistake, now assigned to destroy the GOP.

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #52 on: June 08, 2017, 12:43:10 PM »
Can anyone watching the live testimony explain to me WTF that last line of questioning was about?  I believe it was S. McCain.  Trying to suggest it's unfair / partisan that Clinton / her campaign is not ALSO under investigation regarding Russia's tampering.

Am I just too partisan?  It made him seem like a, very uncharacteristic of him, crazy person, to me at least.
(maybe it wasn't McCain?)  Listening not watching so much.

Fenring

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #53 on: June 08, 2017, 12:45:53 PM »
Am I just too partisan?  It made him seem like a, very uncharacteristic of him, crazy person, to me at least.
(maybe it wasn't McCain?)  Listening not watching so much.

I'm not watching it, but since I think McCain is a crazy person I find no contradiction here.

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #54 on: June 08, 2017, 01:15:31 PM »
I typically find him one of the more moderating influences in the party...

Seriati

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #55 on: June 08, 2017, 01:29:08 PM »
Might try to read the transcripts.  Find it interesting that he sent his opening statement in early before he went under oath and apparently didn't read it under oath.  Not sure if he attested to it.  Wouldn't be surprised given his admission  of leaks of his memos, which seems highly questionable to me, if he was not a major source behind other leaks.  He's a personal friend of the special counsel, be very interested to see if the special counsel investigates him or gives him some kind of pass.

Wayward Son

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #56 on: June 08, 2017, 02:21:26 PM »
FiveThirtyEight did a live commentary of the testimony, and one of the commentators had an interesting explanation:

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One way to make sense of McCain’s line of questioning and bringing up of Clinton is to think about it again through the political sound-bite lens. This was the basic partisan logic of the election — many Republican voters had some reservations about Trump but had much stronger negative feelings toward Clinton. As a political cue, it makes perfect sense to mention her.

And, Seriati, you seem to have glommed onto the Republican strategy for this testimony:

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I wouldn’t be surprised if we see the “Comey was the leaker” thing used to try to undermine his credibility. (Although all the lavish praise for him as a public servant may make that argument more difficult.)

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #57 on: June 08, 2017, 02:21:47 PM »
Various parts of the written statement were posed to him for verification while he was sworn in and he did so.  Not sure if that meets a criteria you are eluding to. 

The "like feeding seagulls" excuse for not handing over the info to the press himself seemed very lame.  On the other hand, the whole testimony as well as his behavior during the Clinton email investigation serves to give the impression that his first reflex is C.Y.A. mode.

He seemed careful to point out that nothing he turned over to the press was of a classified nature.  While it's easy to view it as sabotaging the executive / president, (if you are inclined to reject him doing it to protect the independence of the FBI against an inappropriate acting president) labeling it "a leak" gets into a gray area. 

He doesn't strike me as someone would would leak anything classified, or, if he was that type, one willing to put his ass on the line to do so.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2017, 02:24:40 PM by D.W. »

Fenring

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #58 on: June 08, 2017, 02:30:28 PM »
I typically find him one of the more moderating influences in the party...

Maybe it's a question of tone. He doesn't rave like a crazy person, but he champions positions (especially in foreign policy) that I believe only a crazy person would endorse. In terms of partisan shouting I can see how he would come off as one of the less circus-like people out there.

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #59 on: June 08, 2017, 02:36:29 PM »
I typically find him one of the more moderating influences in the party...

Maybe it's a question of tone. He doesn't rave like a crazy person, but he champions positions (especially in foreign policy) that I believe only a crazy person would endorse. In terms of partisan shouting I can see how he would come off as one of the less circus-like people out there.
To be clear, I don't find his political positions agreeable.  But I get the impression he honestly holds those opinions and isn't just playing the partisan game.  He seems sincere I guess is what I'm getting.  Not a hypocrite etc. 

Seriati

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #60 on: June 08, 2017, 02:37:30 PM »
FiveThirtyEight did a live commentary of the testimony, and one of the commentators had an interesting explanation:

Like I said, I may read the transcript when I have time, I don't need the "help" of analysts to form a conclusion about commentary.

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One way to make sense of McCain’s line of questioning and bringing up of Clinton is to think about it again through the political sound-bite lens. This was the basic partisan logic of the election — many Republican voters had some reservations about Trump but had much stronger negative feelings toward Clinton. As a political cue, it makes perfect sense to mention her.

Lol. Let's distract from a legitimate credibility point - ie why did you treat a Democrat differently from a Republican on a similar circumstance by claiming only a partisan would ask that? 

McCain is no friend of Trumps.   

It's pretty clear from the snippets that Comey's practice of recording his contemporaneous thoughts didn't come up when he was ordered by the DOJ not to refer to an investigation as an investigation.  His rationale for rushing out to clear Clinton doesn't make much sense either, to paraphrase, he seems to be saying, just got word that the DOJ may have been "influenced" to make this go away better run out an make it go away faster.

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And, Seriati, you seem to have glommed onto the Republican strategy for this testimony:

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I wouldn’t be surprised if we see the “Comey was the leaker” thing used to try to undermine his credibility. (Although all the lavish praise for him as a public servant may make that argument more difficult.)

Comey is a leaker.  Whether he leaked more is another question.  Against a back drop of an FBI that did not manage to find any leaker until after Comey was fired, I think it's a very interesting question.  Comey's statements on the leaks have tended to be very specific 'I did not authorize a leak,' 'I did not myself leak."  What if he just nodded and winked?  Or negged it when evidence was put forward about them?  Or "concluded" that evidence didn't deserve a search warrant?  Or deliberately misassigned resources?

What if he had a good idea about who was leaking and did nothing about it?

Fenring

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #61 on: June 08, 2017, 02:42:22 PM »
To be clear, I don't find his political positions agreeable.  But I get the impression he honestly holds those opinions and isn't just playing the partisan game.  He seems sincere I guess is what I'm getting.  Not a hypocrite etc.

Just to dip into a bit of hyperbole, imagine the Dr. Strangelove scenario where a hard-edged guy with honestly held opinions and isn't just playing the partisan game is pushing for hawkish foreign policy. On tone and sincerity you might evaluate such a person as "sane sounding" or even "level headed" until you realize that foreign policy amounts to a push towards mutual nuclear annihilation. If you ask me such a person is the least sane of them all. At least the raving maniac has some sense that there's something abnormal going on. The 'sane maniac' is the one who thinks everything is ok when it's not.

That aside I think it's hard to assess conviction for sincerity. He might have consistent conviction and so doesn't come off as shifting with the political winds. But consistency to what principles and objectives?

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #62 on: June 08, 2017, 03:10:26 PM »
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Lol. Let's distract from a legitimate credibility point - ie why did you treat a Democrat differently from a Republican on a similar circumstance by claiming only a partisan would ask that? 
WHAT similar circumstance?  Am I missing something here? 

The confusion on my part about the line of questions was that McCain didn't seem to be drawing parallels between the two entirely different investigations and how he handled them.  That would potentially be a legitimate criticism.

He seemed (to me at least) to be suggesting that Commey had proclaimed Clinton and her campaign clear of the Russia investigation, and he had a problem with that not seeming fair...

Let me know if you read / hear different when you get around to it.  I kinda hope to hear a good rational because it sounded like his aids needed to go get his medication and or a tinfoil hat to me.

I think Serati that you need to clarify what you mean by a leak.  An illegal act of releasing classified info, or just information others may have expected to be private?  Ya know what, NM that last part.  The more I think on it, non-classified info can still be considered a leak, often for political reasons.  Technically he did "leak" even if I agree with his motivations.  I don't think this was a prosecutable leak though.

« Last Edit: June 08, 2017, 03:13:28 PM by D.W. »

Pete at Home

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #63 on: June 08, 2017, 03:26:28 PM »
Since Coney has announced that the Clinton investigation was closed, it was not just his prerogative but his duty to report that it has reopened. That is no leak, he is the head of the FBI, and calling his press conference a "leak" is like me calling your newborn daughter "vaginal discharge."

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #64 on: June 08, 2017, 03:29:03 PM »
I expect the leak was that Comey freely admitted to handing some of his notes to a friend, so that friend would pass them on to the press for the express intent of triggering a special investigator.

But thanks for that colorful comparison Pete... 

Pete at Home

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #65 on: June 08, 2017, 04:03:59 PM »
I expect the leak was that Comey freely admitted to handing some of his notes to a friend, so that friend would pass them on to the press for the express intent of triggering a special investigator.

OK, THAT would be a leak.  I thought you were referring to Comey's announcement that the investigation of HRC was resuming as a "leak," hence my discharge comparison.

"Me" calling "your" daughter x was typo, BTW, and horrifying one.  To my knowledge you'd said nothing about having a daughter; otherwise that remark would be causa beli.  Apologies for that very unfortunate typo.

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #66 on: June 08, 2017, 04:10:01 PM »
Wasn't even sure if you were referring to me.  I have no kids, and even if I did wouldn't be inclined to take offense at that.  Other than on the grounds of it being kinda gross...


Seriati

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #68 on: June 08, 2017, 05:00:36 PM »
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Lol. Let's distract from a legitimate credibility point - ie why did you treat a Democrat differently from a Republican on a similar circumstance by claiming only a partisan would ask that? 
WHAT similar circumstance?  Am I missing something here?

The argument seemed to be that there is a parallel on the obstruction front between Trump's expressing a hope he could drop the charges (by the way you should read Dershowitz on this, he flat out states that Trump could have ordered him to drop the investigation) and the directions from the DOJ on the Clinton email scandal (ie don't call it an investigation).  Why did Comey feel he had to record one conversation but not the other?  It makes less sense when he goes on to state the DOJ directive "confused" him and then that he stopped getting direction from the DOJ apparently because he thought it might have been subjected to political influence.  I don't really see a non-partisan rationale for that difference.

I note as well, Comey's record keeping seems to have begun before he had a reasonable reason to do it (in fact, it read like his first "private" conversation with Trump was where Comey claims he was trying to let the President know that Comey didn't intend to blackmail him - think about how that conversation would look to an outsider listening in - Wowsa).  I find his claim that he "didn't trust Trump" a bit self serving, looks more to me like he was trying to run a set up job.

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The confusion on my part about the line of questions was that McCain didn't seem to be drawing parallels between the two entirely different investigations and how he handled them.  That would potentially be a legitimate criticism.

Haven't read McCain's actual words, was reacting to Wayward's criticism of what appears to be a legitimate appearance of partisan favoritism.

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He seemed (to me at least) to be suggesting that Commey had proclaimed Clinton and her campaign clear of the Russia investigation, and he had a problem with that not seeming fair..

Well, he did ignore the actual law to do it, and he seems to have admitted that he rushed to do it without DOJ approval because apparently, the DOJ looked like it was being improperly influenced to drop it.  Only in a left wing press does that not raise eyebrows.

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I think Serati that you need to clarify what you mean by a leak.  An illegal act of releasing classified info, or just information others may have expected to be private?

Curious why you think Comey should the be the one to decide the classification level of a conversation he had with the President.  Comey literally said, he released an "unclassified" memo he wrote.  Why is it unclassified?  Because he chose to not classify it.  That decision is self serving and may not be correct.  The memo may have been entitled to classification, to executive discretion, or just to professional ethics as he prepared it in his role as head of the FBI and its a government record related to an investigation.  I can honestly say, I've never once deemed such a "memo to flies" as a personal record rather than a record of an employer.  Did he comply with any of the government regulations on who and how government records can be released to the media?  Guaranty they apply to government employees post termination with respect to government records.

As to why it's a leak?  He literally shared the information with the media rather than with any of his superiors, he hasn't apparently filed it - as he is required by law to do - and he gave to the press, indirectly and maybe directly.  What else would it be?

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Ya know what, NM that last part.  The more I think on it, non-classified info can still be considered a leak, often for political reasons.  Technically he did "leak" even if I agree with his motivations.  I don't think this was a prosecutable leak though.

Not sure whether its prosecutable or not.  I'd really like to understand if he misappropriated these government records - they are literally not his property - and whether he really was the correct person to determine the classification level.

Seriati

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #69 on: June 08, 2017, 05:04:59 PM »
I meant to add by the way, if Dersh is correct and Trump could have just ordered him to drop the investigation (which is literally something other Presidents have done), then we have an interesting puzzle:

If Comey took it as an order, then if it's a legal order, he actually refused to implement a lawful order of the President.

If Comey took it as an order, but an illegal one, then his testimony is that he did not follow the law on how to handle an obstruction of justice claim, once again taking onto himself authority that properly belongs at the DOJ.

If Comey didn't take it as an order, then he perjured himself to Congress.

Am I missing a way to interpret this?

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #70 on: June 08, 2017, 05:17:13 PM »
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I find his claim that he "didn't trust Trump" a bit self serving, looks more to me like he was trying to run a set up job.
I think anyone who watches even a modest amount of TV in the past decade and paid any attention during the campaign would have concerns about the man. 

Then being pulled aside alone with him would set off radars if you honestly believed that this act alone puts at risk the appearance of independence of the FBI.  (Something Comey seems to take very seriously, whatever you say about his seeming tone-deafness regarding how his statements play in the political landscape,)

Also, just to clarify, "recording" is "note taking" and done AFTER that first meeting.  So there is every possibility that Trump could have had a discussion with him that unruffled Comey's feathers and put him at ease, negating the need to keep notes.  That obviously didn't happen.

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Well, he did ignore the actual law to do it, and he seems to have admitted that he rushed to do it without DOJ approval because apparently, the DOJ looked like it was being improperly influenced to drop it.
To do WHAT?  Which investigation was dropped or stated publicly it was dropped.  Did I miss where Clinton's campaign was suspected of colluding with the Russians or being directly blackmailed by them?  (as opposed to being targeted by them as a smear which would not indicate the need for investigating the Clinton campaign) 

There seemed to be a conflation of two different things going on.  Even McCain seems to concede he did not get his point across well.  (an understatement judging by my own and a lot of other rather amusing twitter reactions to his line of questioning.)

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Curious why you think Comey should the be the one to decide the classification level of a conversation he had with the President.
It's based on my layman's understanding of how classification works...

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As to why it's a leak?  He literally shared the information with the media rather than with any of his superiors, he hasn't apparently filed it - as he is required by law to do - and he gave to the press, indirectly and maybe directly.  What else would it be?
A quibble.  He HAS "filed it" as in turned it over to the investigator.  Timing may be important here towards your point though.

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I'd really like to understand if he misappropriated these government records - they are literally not his property - and whether he really was the correct person to determine the classification level.
Another interesting point.  Are they "government records"?  This is just his notes, written down after (though immediately after according to him) of his meeting and his thoughts on that.  They are not "official" meeting minutes rattled out by a government stenographer... But that's the whole point of a private conversation.

I'm with you on it being inappropriate to just air private conversations one has with the President, but when it's relevant to such a serious matter?  I get his decision.  That said, I don't think Trump was entirely wrong calling the guy a show-boater. 

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #71 on: June 08, 2017, 05:20:57 PM »
Am I missing a way to interpret this?
All excellent points.  Another massive fumble of judgement by Comey IMO. 
The other way to interpret it is this:
This was a man attempting to give direction, knowing full well how catastrophic it would be, if it were to be revealed he "ordered it".  If Trump could influence Comey into "choosing" to drop it, on his own prerogative, that would be splendid.

This is a man use to people doing what he wants them to for no other reason than it is self evident they should, because he's rich/powerful/Donald Trump!  (opinion)

Wayward Son

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #72 on: June 08, 2017, 05:56:29 PM »
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If Comey took it as an order, then if it's a legal order, he actually refused to implement a lawful order of the President.

If Comey took it as an order, but an illegal one, then his testimony is that he did not follow the law on how to handle an obstruction of justice claim, once again taking onto himself authority that properly belongs at the DOJ.

If Comey didn't take it as an order, then he perjured himself to Congress.

Am I missing a way to interpret this?

That all depends if it was an order or not an order.  And that's easy to determine.

If everyone on this board agrees it was an order, then it's an order.

If we all agree it wasn't an order, then it wasn't an order.

Of course, if we don't all agree, then it could have been either.  Or maybe one of those "suggestions" that supervisors sometime make which are actually orders, but they will deny if you ask them.  ;)  ;)

So it would be an order, without really being an order. 

Unless, of course, you don't obey the order, then you're fired.

But for some other reason.

You understand, right? :)

Trump could have been asking for advice on whether there was a way to legally cool the investigation.  Or he could have been making a "strong suggestion."  There is no way to know.

So it isn't as simple as did he take it as an order or not.  Because it sounds both like an order, a suggestion, and a question.  Only time would tell which way Trump meant it.

But I don't think we can hold Comey responsible for knowing which when we don't know ourselves.

Pete at Home

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #73 on: June 08, 2017, 06:02:57 PM »
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Curious why you think Comey should the be the one to decide the classification level of a conversation he had with the President.  Comey literally said, he released an "unclassified" memo he wrote.  Why is it unclassified? 

Because no one classified it.  If the sender or recipient had classified it, then it would have been classified.

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Because he chose to not classify it.  That decision is self serving and may not be correct.  The memo may have been entitled to classification, to executive discretion, or just to professional ethics as he prepared it in his role as head of the FBI and its a government record related to an investigation.  I can honestly say, I've never once deemed such a "memo to flies" as a personal record rather than a record of an employer.  Did he comply with any of the government regulations on who and how government records can be released to the media?

If he violated regs, then that's for his critics to show.

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #74 on: June 08, 2017, 06:03:35 PM »
I think it's going to boil down to Comey knowing he was in a gray area.  Rather than trying to get out of that area, by either educating or offending Trump, he decided to engage in Cover Your Ass tactics. 

Was this because he didn't like the guy and wanted to see him dig his own grave?
Was this because he thought it may protect him from lies by Trump? 
If as "protection" was it for himself, or the FBI / America? 

Why didn't he try to straighten this out earlier, either with the president or his staff? 
The man is a contradiction.  Prepared, maybe brave for not being pressured by those in power... yet at the same time a *censored*.  And Trump tried to handle him like one...

Seriati

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #75 on: June 08, 2017, 06:12:50 PM »
To do WHAT?  Which investigation was dropped or stated publicly it was dropped.

Are you really confused?  The parallel is to the roughly equivalent level of obstruction in the email server investigation.

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Did I miss where Clinton's campaign was suspected of colluding with the Russians or being directly blackmailed by them?  (as opposed to being targeted by them as a smear which would not indicate the need for investigating the Clinton campaign)

Apparently you did.  The evidence for the Clinton campaign, including speaking fees, historical contacts with Russian spies and donations to the Clinton charities (and apparent quid pro quos on Uranium) is at least as damning as the circumstantial stuff that's actually been presented by about the Trump campaign.

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There seemed to be a conflation of two different things going on.  Even McCain seems to concede he did not get his point across well.  (an understatement judging by my own and a lot of other rather amusing twitter reactions to his line of questioning.)

Obstruction is obstruction, doesn't matter if one underlying investigation is about emails and another about Russians. 

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Curious why you think Comey should the be the one to decide the classification level of a conversation he had with the President.
It's based on my layman's understanding of how classification works...

And would an FBI agent be entitled to classify his own conversations with Comey?  And decide, on his own that he can release them to the media?

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As to why it's a leak?  He literally shared the information with the media rather than with any of his superiors, he hasn't apparently filed it - as he is required by law to do - and he gave to the press, indirectly and maybe directly.  What else would it be?
A quibble.  He HAS "filed it" as in turned it over to the investigator.  Timing may be important here towards your point though.

No, it's more than a quibble.  If he'd filed as required by law, it would be in the national archive and Congress would already have it.  The only way he could have not filed it open to other government officials would have been to add a classification to it.  On what basis is he denying an unclassified government record to Congress and the Archives?  If it was unclassified now, it was unclassified when written and should have been filed and available to the President.  What he did is actually a barely ethical lawyers trick, particularly in this case where he either had the final authority to act or failed to report the matter properly to those who did (the memo to files is used when by a junior staff member to record a disagreement on an issue where they were overruled by a senior person).

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I'd really like to understand if he misappropriated these government records - they are literally not his property - and whether he really was the correct person to determine the classification level.
Another interesting point.  Are they "government records"?  This is just his notes, written down after (though immediately after according to him) of his meeting and his thoughts on that.  They are not "official" meeting minutes rattled out by a government stenographer... But that's the whole point of a private conversation.

There is really no question they are government records.  He's not entitled to record government communications and take them home.  This almost he exact thing that got that General convicted - improperly sharing his own notes.

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I'm with you on it being inappropriate to just air private conversations one has with the President, but when it's relevant to such a serious matter?  I get his decision.  That said, I don't think Trump was entirely wrong calling the guy a show-boater.

At this point, I think he's a snake.  I see no evidence that he was properly executing his job. Whether he likes it or not the President is the head of the executive branch.

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #76 on: June 08, 2017, 06:21:46 PM »
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Are you really confused?  The parallel is to the roughly equivalent level of obstruction in the email server investigation.
Which is fine, if that’s what was being compared.  Seriously, watch / listen to it if you get a chance.  I’m not sure a transcript will catch the, “Huh?  I don’t get it.”, context.
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Apparently you did.  The evidence for the Clinton campaign, including speaking fees, historical contacts with Russian spies and donations to the Clinton charities (and apparent quid pro quos on Uranium) is at least as damning as the circumstantial stuff that's actually been presented by about the Trump campaign.
Good points, but they aren’t related to the SAME investigation.  Or are they in your opinion?
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Obstruction is obstruction, doesn't matter if one underlying investigation is about emails and another about Russians. 
Agreed.  And maybe that was what he (McCain) was TRYING to convey.  He pretty much tanked that.
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And would an FBI agent be entitled to classify his own conversations with Comey?  And decide, on his own that he can release them to the media?
I don’t know if they are entitled to or not.  If they DID, then they couldn’t then decide to, no.  :P
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If he'd filed as required by law, it would be in the national archive and Congress would already have it.
By that standard, he did not.  He handed it over to the investigation.  He was asked today if he could retrieve, if it still exists, any written notes he handed off to his friend (that released it to the press).  We’ll see if that goes anywhere...
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At this point, I think he's a snake.
No argument from me.  He may be an idealist snake, but a snake none the less.  I think those who see him as some sort of hero for coming forward are just being partisan.  He MAY be a hero to those in the FBI struggling for independence against executive pressure, but I don’t know if the damage he’s done in the process is worth striking those blows.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2017, 06:24:22 PM by D.W. »

Seriati

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #77 on: June 08, 2017, 06:58:53 PM »
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Apparently you did.  The evidence for the Clinton campaign, including speaking fees, historical contacts with Russian spies and donations to the Clinton charities (and apparent quid pro quos on Uranium) is at least as damning as the circumstantial stuff that's actually been presented by about the Trump campaign.
Good points, but they aren’t related to the SAME investigation.  Or are they in your opinion?

What constitutes an "investigation" to you?  It's an arbitrary thing.  Is each piece of Russian propaganda the root of a separate "investigation" or is it the campaign by Russia to manipulate the US?  If its the latter, yes it should be part of the same "investigation" if the former it should be the subject of its own "investigation."

Once again, cause people seem to forget, there is absolutely no law against the Russians trying to "manipulate" our opinions, votes or even elections through propaganda, opinion pieces or even just flat out stating what they want.  There are laws against hacking (which occurred, but no proof of who did it has actually been released), there are laws against foreign contributions to political campaigns (which Bill Clinton violated in the past, and to my knowledge no one's been accused of in this case), and against pay to play (which the massive donations to the Clinton foundation from countries that were looking for favorable results from the Clinton state department and/or administration would seem to clearly violate). 

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Obstruction is obstruction, doesn't matter if one underlying investigation is about emails and another about Russians. 
Agreed.  And maybe that was what he (McCain) was TRYING to convey.  He pretty much tanked that.

Lol, no surprise to me that McCain would tank it.  Still was reacting to Waywards claim that this is some kind of illegitimate attempt to distract than whether McCain successfully made a point.

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And would an FBI agent be entitled to classify his own conversations with Comey?  And decide, on his own that he can release them to the media?
I don’t know if they are entitled to or not.  If they DID, then they couldn’t then decide to, no.  :P

Okay, the answer is no.  They are not entitled to set the classification level themselves, if they have authority to view classified material then they are charged with recognizing it and treating it as such.

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #78 on: June 08, 2017, 07:59:32 PM »
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Lol, no surprise to me that McCain would tank it.  Still was reacting to Waywards claim that this is some kind of illegitimate attempt to distract than whether McCain successfully made a point.
It was THAT bad Seriati.  Waywards' "claim" is almost more generous to the man.

godsblackestcrow

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #79 on: June 08, 2017, 11:53:51 PM »
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There are laws against hacking (which occurred, but no proof of who did it has actually been released)
The proof is presumably classified, Ser. The fact that you don't have the clearance to see the evidence doesn't actually mean that you are providing a valid reason for your implication that the intelligence community reports regarding who committed the hack (Russia did it) are unreliable.

Or is there substance behind your suggestive words, Ser? Do you have credible evidence that all of the agencies in our Intelligence Community are conspiring to lie to us about who it was who hacked your political opposition?

Are you just calling our national intelligence community a bunch of liars and traitors to demonstrate your partisan political bias, or do you actually have some substance of reasoning to add to your innuendo?

Seriati

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #80 on: June 09, 2017, 12:11:20 AM »
Gbc, there's nothing but innuendo and trust in one group of officials versus another that anyone outside of the insiders has at this point.  What I see right now is a whole lot of out of power politicians who keep saying they see smoke and always claiming you just missed it when you turn to look for it.

godsblackestcrow

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #81 on: June 09, 2017, 12:17:37 AM »
The CIA told us the hack was committed by Russia.

You keep implying that the CIA was lying.

What is the reasoning behind YOUR innuendo, Seriati?

Pete at Home

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #82 on: June 09, 2017, 01:04:52 AM »
The CIA told us the hack was committed by Russia.

You keep implying that the CIA was lying.

What is the reasoning behind YOUR innuendo, Seriati?

there was a god that had a crow and jingo was its name-o
J-I-NGO
J-I-NGO
j-I-NGO
and jingo was its name    oh!        :P

Where's the reasoning behind your assumption that (a) the CIA actually said what the press said it said, and (b) that the CIA knows what it's talking about, and (c) that the CIA is telling the truth?
« Last Edit: June 09, 2017, 01:07:31 AM by Pete at Home »

godsblackestcrow

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #83 on: June 09, 2017, 02:40:33 AM »
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Where's the reasoning behind your assumption that (a) the CIA actually said what the press said it said
Nobody is denying that the CIA said what the press reported they said. Nobody. There aren't any leaks from officials with clearance to see such reports that claim that what the press is reporting is in error. Even that proven liar Donald Trump isn't lying about what the CIA reports say--he's just been been denigrating their assessment.
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(b) that the CIA knows what it's talking about,
It's kind of their job. I don't assume that they're omniscient, but I do accept that they're the ones who are charged with the task of protecting Americans and American institutions from espionage.

I certainly believe they know more about what they're talking about on this issue than you or I do...
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that the CIA is telling the truth?
Did you miss the point of my question?

Nobody has proffered even slightly credible evidence that the CIA is lying about this issue.

There's just a big smear of vague Orange lies, innuendo and propaganda--starting with our Liar-in-Chief, and filtering through biased, know-nothing partisans.

Here's the reality about the record here: the intelligence reports all say it was Russia. This warrants such a claim. If you have a reason for claiming that these particular intelligence report are error/mendacity, then go to: then the burden of providing evidence and reasoning for such an unwarranted assertion is on YOU, bub.

You want to see the evidence? Get a clearance, and take an oath to protect America, then dedicate your life to that duty. Until then, y'all should stop spreading paranoid rumors that warrantlessly traduce the individuals who are dedicating their lives to keeping you and your loved ones safe at night...

Or at least put up some coherent reasoning for why anyone should believe that the CIA is lying about this specific issue.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2017, 02:50:01 AM by godsblackestcrow »

godsblackestcrow

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #84 on: June 09, 2017, 02:45:23 AM »
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there is absolutely no law against the Russians trying to "manipulate" our opinions, votes or even elections through propaganda,
Banner days for American Patriotism.

Go team Putin-puppets!
« Last Edit: June 09, 2017, 02:57:06 AM by godsblackestcrow »

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #85 on: June 09, 2017, 09:21:26 AM »
Careful with this one.  I don't think we want the world court trying to prosecute foreign manipulation of politics...  ;)

Seriati

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #86 on: June 09, 2017, 09:32:52 AM »
The CIA told us the hack was committed by Russia.

I have no doubt the Russians engaged in hacking.  However, it was made clear that so did other persons some of who were initially claimed to be US and some foreign.  It's well known and not illegal that the Russians and most other countries in the world have opinions about our elections and seek to influence them, or did you miss the anti-Trump European press?

The question is, what hacking is it that you are referring to?  The media deliberately conflates disparate events in order to feed a misleading narrative.  Are you talking about the DNC server hack?  Evidence exists the DNC server was subject to leaks as well as hacks, and the US government admitted it never had access to the servers themselves.  So it would be very interesting if you think you can accept a conclusion about who did that hacking.

Are you talking about the Podesta "hack"?  By all accounts he fell prey to a simplistic phishing scam that literally anyone could have produced.  All parties have admitted that Russian signatures of a hack can be spoofed, including by the US government.  Was it a Russian- I tend to think yes - directly working for government - much more doubtful. 

Or are you talking about other hacks, where again the Russians don't seem to have been the only ones trying to do so, just the only ones we want to talk about.

Deliberately conflating "hacks" that had no impact on the election into a conversation to play on the outrage some feel for the damage that was truly caused by Podesta falling for a phishing scam and the DNC records maybe being leaked mabye being hacked, is dubious.

Certainly claiming that proof of the general means the specific has been proven is false logic.  Particularly so when the specific claims are far more dubious.

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You keep implying that the CIA was lying.

Did I?  The CIA is paid to form conclusions.  They may believe them, maybe even in good faith.

Were they wrong when they thought Iraq had WMD?  Were they acting honorably when they  engaged in targeted assasinations and rendition?  Does it bother you that the government illegally surveils the American people and it took Snowden's leaks to break through the lies?  I'm not seeing why anyone should take them at their word when they don't establish the facts.

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What is the reasoning behind YOUR innuendo, Seriati?

If a party asserts a claim that requires three axioms to be true and can't establish any of the axioms, it's not innuendo to state they haven't proven a claim.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2017, 09:41:17 AM by Seriati »

Seriati

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #87 on: June 09, 2017, 09:38:40 AM »
Nobody is denying that the CIA said what the press reported they said. Nobody. There aren't any leaks from officials with clearance to see such reports that claim that what the press is reporting is in error.

You should have paid more attention to Comey.  He specifically stated that those in the know don't challenge the false narratives, expressed some frustration on that point.  Hence, highly disputable if you can rely on a lack of a refutation as proof of anything.


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Nobody has proffered even slightly credible evidence that the CIA is lying about this issue.

No one really knows if the CIA believes itself.  Meanwhile plenty of people have put forward credible explanations of why the CIA could be wrong or overstating its case based on the actual evidence that they would have available to them.  If the CIA has a smoking gun they certainly haven't revealed it.

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There's just a big smear of vague Orange lies, innuendo and propaganda--starting with our Liar-in-Chief, and filtering through biased, know-nothing partisans.

As opposed to the big smear of vague leaker lies, innuendo and propaganda--starting with career bureaucrats who hate the President more than they love the country, filtering through biased, deliberately misleading partisan media sources?

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #88 on: June 09, 2017, 09:44:52 AM »
It makes you wonder what operational or investigative details they are protecting by not declassifying things as fast as bureaucratically possible in order to show the American people what they have. 

It's obvious to everyone how caustic it is to our way of life to keep this hidden and let speculation and paranoia and mistrust simmer.  How nobody's done the math and thought, "We are doing far more harm to the country than will ever happen if this info gets out.", is beyond me. 

Well, I suppose a few people, with a few edge pieces of the puzzle have tried.  Sorta...

Seriati

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #89 on: June 09, 2017, 09:58:47 AM »
D.W. that's a reasonable point, but I think you are forgetting the partisan divide here. I mean look at Comey's testimony about whether he was investigating Trump.  The President asked his subordinate to make the lack of investigation pubic, would seem to be within the President's authority as the head of the executive branch, would it not?  If Obama had ordered the head of the FBI to confirm publicly that someone wasn't under investigation don't you think he would have done it?  So why didn't it happen?  Why did an indirect subordinate of the President feel entitled to disregard the President's direction, without so much as raising the issue to his own direct superior?

Do you really think that the executive branch is actually carrying out the President's will?

EDIT - Sorry the point of that was disclosure and non-disclosure is being weighed as which party or even person it benefits rather than the good of the country.  I mean Comey certainly leaked things to his own benefit quickly enough.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2017, 10:06:56 AM by Seriati »

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #90 on: June 09, 2017, 10:15:20 AM »
D.W. that's a reasonable point, but I think you are forgetting the partisan divide here. I mean look at Comey's testimony about whether he was investigating Trump.  The President asked his subordinate to make the lack of investigation pubic, would seem to be within the President's authority as the head of the executive branch, would it not?  If Obama had ordered the head of the FBI to confirm publicly that someone wasn't under investigation don't you think he would have done it?  So why didn't it happen?  Why did an indirect subordinate of the President feel entitled to disregard the President's direction, without so much as raising the issue to his own direct superior?

Do you really think that the executive branch is actually carrying out the President's will?

EDIT - Sorry the point of that was disclosure and non-disclosure is being weighed as which party or even person it benefits rather than the good of the country.  I mean Comey certainly leaked things to his own benefit quickly enough.

I had a different take-away from this.  My understanding was that order was never given.  When the request was made, Comey pointed out it may be a bad idea.  Doing so would then demand he publicly state if that should ever change.  (Trump being personally under investigation).  He even went into how it was very likely, if not inevitable per one of his team, that this would indeed happen.

Now, maybe I'm wrong and Trump did order Comey to do so and he refused.  But it seems far more plausible to me that Trump was privately talked down, while publicly railing against Comey and the FBI and "leaking" ;) that he was reassured multiple times that HE was not under investigation.  Thus allowing him maximum spin potential with minimal exposure. 

Too jaded an assessment?  Giving him too much credit? 

Crunch

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #91 on: June 09, 2017, 10:21:35 AM »
In the end, we learned 5 things from Comey's testimony:

  • Trump was not under FBI investigation
  • Comey was leaking documents to the media (there is a potential criminal case here)
  • The obstruction of justice case against Trump is blown
  • The NYT published fake news
  • Loretta Lynch did, in fact, manipulate the Clinton investigation

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #92 on: June 09, 2017, 10:23:15 AM »
Can you expand on #3?
The rest, while some may argue nuance, seems to line up with my take-away.

Ohh and we should add this.
6.  There's something much more interesting going on that can't be discussed in open session.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2017, 10:27:48 AM by D.W. »

Fenring

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #93 on: June 09, 2017, 10:45:15 AM »
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There are laws against hacking (which occurred, but no proof of who did it has actually been released)
The proof is presumably classified, Ser. The fact that you don't have the clearance to see the evidence doesn't actually mean that you are providing a valid reason for your implication that the intelligence community reports regarding who committed the hack (Russia did it) are unreliable.

No. The FBI insists in never laid eyes on the DNC server in particular despite wanting to. The DNC wouldn't let them and instead would only permit their privately hired firm, CrowdStrike, to inspect that physical machines. Any direct statements about what did/didn't happen comes from them and a few other private companies, and yet I've never heard a claim that any of the other companies had direct access. They, in turn, may only have been extrapolating from what CrowdStrike reported. Aside from the fact that I implicitly don't trust CrowdStrike, we have it on record that they were utterly incompetent in their assessment of the Ukraine weapons fiasco. I don't see why anyone would consider what they have to say worthy of trust or respect aside from the fact that it supports certain narratives. The FBI themselves expressed at best lukewarm or neutral sentiments about CrowdStrike's conclusions, and absolutely wouldn't stand by them. As others have mentioned, the Podesta phishing incident is completely separate and can't even realistically be called a 'hack' even though it was obviously malicious.

As far as the CIA goes, how would they even know what it was? They had no direct access, presumably have no HUMINT that fed them this information, and it's not even in their wheelhouse to be speaking of matters to do with data encryption and spoofing. They're likely just blowing smoke that supports their own agendas at worst, and at best making an educated guess, which is ok but not reliable.

By the way, if it's 'so obvious' that there was a foreign hack on a major political party, where was the court order for the FBI to confiscate the DNC servers? If there was any veracity to the claim the DNC would have no say in whether the FBI or NSA got to inspect the servers or not. It would be a legitimate matter of national security, and no small matter. The bluster and talk has been issued as if it was this important, but law enforcement didn't react at all in the manner it would if a foreign government was attempting a political coup.

What's clear to me is that we're not privy to most of the real details behind the scenes in this one, as I think D.W. has also suggested. I agree with him that Comey is a snake.

NobleHunter

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #94 on: June 09, 2017, 10:51:23 AM »
No. The FBI insists in never laid eyes on the DNC server in particular despite wanting to. The DNC wouldn't let them and instead would only permit their privately hired firm, CrowdStrike, to inspect that physical machines. Any direct statements about what did/didn't happen comes from them and a few other private companies, and yet I've never heard a claim that any of the other companies had direct access. They, in turn, may only have been extrapolating from what CrowdStrike reported. Aside from the fact that I implicitly don't trust CrowdStrike, we have it on record that they were utterly incompetent in their assessment of the Ukraine weapons fiasco. I don't see why anyone would consider what they have to say worthy of trust or respect aside from the fact that it supports certain narratives. The FBI themselves expressed at best lukewarm or neutral sentiments about CrowdStrike's conclusions, and absolutely wouldn't stand by them. As others have mentioned, the Podesta phishing incident is completely separate and can't even realistically be called a 'hack' even though it was obviously malicious.

As far as the CIA goes, how would they even know what it was? They had no direct access, presumably have no HUMINT that fed them this information, and it's not even in their wheelhouse to be speaking of matters to do with data encryption and spoofing. They're likely just blowing smoke that supports their own agendas at worst, and at best making an educated guess, which is ok but not reliable.

By the way, if it's 'so obvious' that there was a foreign hack on a major political party, where was the court order for the FBI to confiscate the DNC servers? If there was any veracity to the claim the DNC would have no say in whether the FBI or NSA got to inspect the servers or not. It would be a legitimate matter of national security, and no small matter. The bluster and talk has been issued as if it was this important, but law enforcement didn't react at all in the manner it would if a foreign government was attempting a political coup.

What's clear to me is that we're not privy to most of the real details behind the scenes in this one, as I think D.W. has also suggested. I agree with him that Comey is a snake.
HumInt would be exactly the sort of intel to provide certainty and be sufficiently sensitive to not breathe a word about it. It'd make a reasonable explanation as to why Comey was so emphatic regarding Russian interference despite the poor quality of evidence that has been made public.

Fenring

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #95 on: June 09, 2017, 11:01:50 AM »
HumInt would be exactly the sort of intel to provide certainty and be sufficiently sensitive to not breathe a word about it. It'd make a reasonable explanation as to why Comey was so emphatic regarding Russian interference despite the poor quality of evidence that has been made public.

Is it within the realm of possibility? Yes. Do I actually believe this is the case? No. If the CIA had direct and certain evidence of Russian hacking of a U.S. election the reaction would have been entirely different. And by the way I have little faith in their having an agent in precisely the right place to be able to finger Russia for it. Even if 'Russia' did such a thing it was likely a subcontract, so...what, the CIA has an agent in that particular hacking company? From what we've seen in the last 10-15 years I think HumInt is one of the weaker points of foreign intelligence work, and certainly I think it's a stretch to assume this is how the CIA made its own particular statement and yet somehow that fact remained in the background while the political witch-hunt was taking the foreground.

As an aside, I see little to no possibility the CIA would disclose sensitive information about their HumInt operations to Comey or anyone else in the FBI. Those groups do not work together and share information as partners.

NobleHunter

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #96 on: June 09, 2017, 01:02:16 PM »
How would the reaction be different? Sanctions were applied and fairly strong language was used.

The info might have been shared with the FBI by the White House rather than laterally from the CIA.

Seriati

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #97 on: June 12, 2017, 07:57:40 PM »
So I just saw a write up by Gregg Jarrett on Fox News about an issue that I've been noodling for a couple days now.  How on earth can Mueller continue as the Special Counsel when he has a blatant conflict of interest inherent in his personal relationship with Comey?

I mean if Sessions had to recuse himself because he once met with the Russian ambassador, how can Mueller continue when an apparent star witness, Comey, is his former protege?

At a minimum, he has to divest his investigation of anything related to Comey to someone else.

D.W.

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #98 on: June 13, 2017, 05:31:51 PM »
So where do you guys come down on declining to answer a question because the president MAY decide to invoke executive privilege regarding said question?

At least, that's the impression I got from Session's non-answer answers. 
This seemed (as a Trump political opponent) as sending your soldier in to answer only questions you want to while stonewalling the ones you don't want to answer.  That said I sympathize with not wanting to air private conversations with the president without his permission. 

In short, I think their legal team fumbled bad in their strategy for not answering specific questions.  I don't see how this helped at all, from an executive position.  Well, mostly unhelpful.  I suppose it swats down (or at least directly contradicts under threat of perjury) some of the more fanciful smoking gun type theories floating around out there.

TheDrake

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Re: Trump Fires FBI Directer Comey
« Reply #99 on: June 13, 2017, 05:40:42 PM »
So where do you guys come down on declining to answer a question because the president MAY decide to invoke executive privilege regarding said question?

At least, that's the impression I got from Session's non-answer answers. 

Something vaguely similar worked for Reagan and Oliver North...