At the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, a custom pavilion was built to house Reagan’s Air Force One plane. It’s a massive space that also displays a presidential helicopter and a collection of vehicles.
When Donald Trump eventually builds his presidential library, he’ll need a pavilion twice that size to hold the “Trump was Right” exhibit.
He might need two of them.
Special Counsel John Durham has released his “Report on Matters Related to Intelligence Activities and Investigations Arising Out of the 2016 Presidential Campaigns,” and it confirms that Trump was right when he called the investigation into alleged collusion between his campaign and Russia “a hoax.”
There never was any actual evidence, none at all, to support that allegation or the opening of an FBI investigation. None. Nothing. Zero.
In fact, there was evidence to the contrary, and the FBI ignored it. “It is the Office’s assessment that the FBI discounted or willfully ignored material information that did not support the narrative of a collusive relationship between Trump and Russia,” the report states.
Trump was framed and the country was torn apart by vicious, false allegations of treasonous conduct by the duly elected president of the United States. Who was responsible?
Hillary Clinton did this, aided and abetted by a number of people in the government.
How high did it go? All the way to the top. In late July 2016, U.S. intelligence agencies learned that Russian intelligence had picked up information alleging that Hillary Clinton had approved a proposal from one of her campaign advisors to vilify Trump by tying him to Vladimir Putin and the Russians’ hacking of the Democratic National Committee, in order to distract from the investigation into her use of a private email server as Secretary of State.
According to his own notes, then-CIA Director John Brennan briefed President Barack Obama with that information on July 28, and on August 3 Brennan met with Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, FBI Director James Comey and other senior administration officials, including Attorney General Loretta Lynch, who participated remotely, to brief them on intelligence related to Russian interference and on the “Clinton Plan” intelligence.
So they all knew. The Durham report says the FBI “failed to act on what should have been — when combined with other incontrovertible facts — a clear warning sign that the FBI might then be the target of an effort to manipulate or influence the law enforcement process for political purposes during the 2016 presidential election.”
Exculpatory evidence, tending to establish innocence, was ignored, while Clinton-funded materials —the Steele Dossier, full of salacious and unverified claims, and false accusations that Trump shared a computer server with Alfa Bank in Russia—were treated as credible. Material from the Steele Dossier was even presented to the FISA court to back up a request for a warrant to spy on a Trump campaign advisor. The court was not told of its political origin.
“Put another way,” the Durham report states, “this [Clinton plan] intelligence — taken at face value — was arguably highly relevant and exculpatory because it could be read in fuller context, and in combination with other facts, to suggest that materials such as the Steele Dossier reports and the Alfa Bank allegations…were part of a political effort to smear a political opponent and to use the resources of the federal government’s law enforcement and intelligence agencies in support of a political objective.”
That’s exactly what happened. And while it was going on, they all knew. It was a hoax. Trump was right.
This corrupt manipulation of the FBI and other government agencies for political purposes did not end with the Russia hoax and still continues today. Consider how our elections have been affected.
As voters went to the polls in 2018, the special counsel investigation into the baseless Trump-Russia allegations was dragging on. How many voters were influenced by the belief that Donald Trump had engaged in treasonous conduct with Russia? The Mueller report was finally released in April 2019, finding no conspiracy or collusion.
As voters went to the polls in 2020, the FBI was in possession of the Hunter Biden laptop, in full knowledge that it was authentic, and keeping silent while the Biden team rounded up misleading statements from former U.S. intelligence officials asserting that the laptop looked like Russian disinformation. Revelations from the Twitter files show government involvement in the suppression and censorship of the New York Post’s truthful reporting that the laptop contained email evidence that Biden was lying to the American people when he said repeatedly that he had no conversations with his son about his business dealings.
As voters went to the polls in 2022, they had recently seen images of a massive FBI raid on Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in August, an unprecedented use of government force at the residence of a former president, suggesting some gravely serious violation of law and national security which has yet to be identified. But it wasn’t until February 2023 that Biden’s lawyers acknowledged that on November 2, before the election, they had found classified documents from Biden’s time as vice president in his office closet at the Penn Biden Center in Washington, D.C.
There were no police vehicles, no flashing red and blue lights, no news cameras for that discovery, or for subsequent discoveries at Biden’s Delaware home of illegally held classified documents from his time as VP and U.S. senator.
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Now the 2024 election is approaching, and the U.S. Department of Justice is investigating both Trump and Biden over possession of documents. Durham called out the FBI and DOJ for “disparate treatment of candidates Clinton and Trump.” Watch closely to see if that happens here.
The abuses of power in the FBI are not limited to presidential candidates. On Wednesday, the House Judiciary subcommittee investigating the weaponization of government heard from three FBI whistleblowers whose lives and reputations have been devastated by improper retaliation. One had brought forth concerns about the tactics used against protesters arrested in connection with January 6th.
There must be accountability. This cannot continue.
Write Susan@SusanShelley.com and follow her on Twitter @Susan_Shelley