While the news media was fixated on yet another mass shooting yesterday (“If it bleeds it leads“), a more significant act of terrorism was occurring just miles away in the House Judiciary Committee, where Trumpkins in the ironically named House GOP Freedom Caucus (they are actually authoritarians who want an autocracy), were collaborating with the Trump legal defense team to defame the Department of Justice and the FBI, and aiding and abetting Trump’s conspiracy to obstruct justice in the Russia investigation.
These authoritarian Trumpkins are requesting to see the prosecutor’s evidence in an active ongoing criminal investigation of the president and his associates, information they are not entitled to receive in the oversight function, so they can then turn that evidence over to Trump’s legal team and to selectively leak it to the GOPropagandists at FAUX News aka “Trump TV,” as they have already done with information the DOJ has previously inappropriately turned over to the committee under unprecedented threats from these authoritarian Trumpkins.
If the DOJ appropriately and lawfully refuses to turn over prosecutorial evidence in response to this improper subpoena, these authoritarian Trumpkins have set in motion a scenario in which Rod Rosenstein can be removed as Deputy AG, to allow Trump to appoint a loyalist stooge as Deputy AG, who will then terminate the Special Counsel’s Russia investigation.
The timing of this slow-motion “Saturday night massacre” all to closely aligns with Trump’s summit with Vladimir Putin on July 16. These authoritarian Trumpkins give all the appearances of being fellow travelers of Putin along with their “Dear Leader.” Is America only weeks away from the accession of America’s first dictator in a Trump über alles banana republic?
I sincerely hope that the Special Counsel will charge these members of Congress as accessories in aiding and abetting a conspiracy to obstruct justice. More importantly, the voters in their districts must finally put country before party, and hold these lawless Trumpkins accountable for their crimes by kicking their corrupt asses out of office.
The New York Times reports, House G.O.P. Breaks Into Open Warfare With Rosenstein, Demanding Files:
On Thursday, the ever-intensifying skirmishes between Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein and conservative House Republicans broke into an ugly public fight.
On the House floor, Republicans voted 226-183 in lock step to give the Justice Department seven days to produce sensitive documents related to the Russia inquiry and the F.B.I.’s investigation of Hillary Clinton’s private email use. Though nonbinding, the measure was intended to put Mr. Rosenstein on notice that House lawmakers were willing to take punitive action — potentially including impeachment — if their demands were not met.
Arizona Delegation: Yea: Biggs, Gosar, Lesko, McSally, Schweikert; Nay: Gallego, Grijalva, O’Halleran, Sinema.
In the House Judiciary Committee, conservative Republicans hauled Mr. Rosenstein and the F.B.I. director, Christopher A. Wray, before television cameras to accuse them of hiding information from Congress to protect their own interests. In Mr. Rosenstein’s case, some Republicans charged outright misconduct related to the investigation into Russian election interference.
The two leaders, both appointed by President Trump, defended the special counsel investigation and their response to congressional investigators, even as they said they had been deeply troubled by the findings of a Justice Department inspector general’s report released this month on the F.B.I.’s handling of the Clinton email case.
“There are mechanisms to resolve this without threatening to hold people in contempt,” Mr. Rosenstein said, urging lawmakers to work with him rather than threaten him. “We are not in contempt of this Congress. We are not going to be.”
Democrats accused Republicans of concocting a political distraction to further bloody the reputation of the Justice Department as it investigates President Trump and his campaign’s ties to Russia. Representative Jerrold Nadler of New York, the top Judiciary Committee Democrat, called the floor vote “clearly a pretext for a move against Mr. Rosenstein that the majority already has planned.”
Representative Luis V. Gutiérrez, Democrat of Illinois, drove the point home to Mr. Rosenstein: “They want to impeach you; they want to indict you; they want to get rid of you. Mr. Rosenstein, good luck. We’re in the minority.”
If this happens, patriotic loyal Americans need to take to the streets en masse to protest against this blatant obstruction of justice by the entirety of the House GOP and the Trump administration. Their contempt for the rule of law will not be allowed to stand. America will not go quietly into that dark night of Trumpism, the new American fascism.
Speaker Paul D. Ryan has expressed confidence that the department is showing a good-faith effort to meet Republican demands, and at least one committee chairman, Representative Robert W. Goodlatte of the Judiciary Committee, said Thursday’s measure was not really necessary.
“For over eight months, they have had the opportunity to choose transparency. But they’ve instead chosen to withhold information and impede any effort of Congress to conduct oversight,” said Representative Mark Meadows of North Carolina, a sponsor of Thursday’s House resolution who raised the possibility of impeachment this week. “If Rod Rosenstein and the Department of Justice have nothing to hide, they certainly haven’t acted like it.”
Thursday’s hearing had been called to allow the law enforcement officials to field questions about the 500-page report from the department’s inspector general, Michael E. Horowitz.
* * *
In the hearing room, Republicans advanced a wide range of topics, including now-familiar and largely unsubstantiated charges against Mr. Rosenstein and the special counsel investigation that he oversees. One by one, the deputy attorney general sought to dispose of them.
Contrary to Mr. Trump’s repeated assertions — including in a Thursday morning tweet — Mr. Rosenstein said he was “not aware of any disqualifying conflict of interest” involving Mr. Mueller.
Representative John Ratcliffe, Republican of Texas, asked if Mr. Mueller had properly addressed the potential taint of political bias brought to the case by Mr. Strzok. Mr. Rosenstein said he was confident Mr. Mueller had taken “appropriate steps” to do so and would continue to.
Representative Jim Jordan, Republican of Ohio, pressed Mr. Rosenstein about news media reports saying that he had threatened members of the House Intelligence Committee staff with a subpoena during a heated dispute this year. Mr. Rosenstein disputed that, too, daring his accusers to contradict his denial under oath.
He also batted back Republican criticism of his role in approving the secret surveillance of a former Trump campaign aide.
“If the inspector general finds that I did something wrong, then I’ll respect that judgment, but I think it’s highly, highly unlikely,” Mr. Rosenstein said.
Representative Trey “Benghazi!” Gowdy, a South Carolina Republican who has been publicly supportive of the Mueller inquiry, told Mr. Rosenstein, “If you have evidence of wrongdoing by any member of the Trump campaign, present it to the damn grand jury. If you have evidence that this president acted inappropriately, present it to the American people. There’s an old saying that justice delayed is justice denied”…
Said the partisan hack who spent two and one-half years pursuing wild conspiracy theories about Benghazi, not to develop a factual record but to smear Secretary of State Hillary Clinton while she was running for the presidency. “One of the longest, costliest and most bitterly partisan congressional investigations in history, the House Select Committee on Benghazi issued its final report, finding no new evidence of culpability or wrongdoing by Hillary Clinton in the 2012 attacks in Libya that left four Americans dead.” House Benghazi Report Finds No New Evidence of Wrongdoing by Hillary Clinton.
This partisan hack has zero credibility to question Robert Mueller’s investigation, which in a short period of time has produced several guilty pleas and numerous criminal indictments. Rep. Gowdy wants the investigation shut down because Robert Mueller is closing in on Donald Trump and his associates. In short, Gowdy is defending criminal behavior.
Mr. Rosenstein pushed back [against Gowdy], saying that Mr. Mueller was moving “as expeditiously as possible” to conclude his work and that the investigation had not actually gone on that long, given its mandate.
In a tense back-and-forth with Mr. Jordan, Mr. Rosenstein said, “Your use of this to attack me personally is deeply wrong.”
At one point, Mr. Rosenstein assured lawmakers, “I’m not a Democrat, and I’m not angry” — a reference to Mr. Trump’s frequent complaint that the Russia investigation is being led by “13 angry Democrats.”
Mr. Wray also made clear that he was not pleased to be locked in a fight with Republicans: “When I was minding my own business in private practice in Atlanta, I didn’t think I was going to be spending the first 10 months of my job staring down the barrel of a contempt citation for conduct that occurred long before I even thought about being F.B.I. director.”
The Judiciary Committee, which had strayed from the spotlight for the last year or so, has ramped up its own investigation of the F.B.I.’s handling of the Clinton case and certain aspects of the Russia investigation in recent weeks.
On Wednesday, GOP lawmakers from the Judiciary Committee [pursued their favorite conspiracy theory] interviewing Peter Strzok for nearly 11 hours about his messages with Lisa Page and his role in both cases. Mr. Strzok said the messages had been taken out of context and did not affect his work, and Democrats on Wednesday night called for the interview transcript to be released to the public.
“As today’s transcript will make crystal clear, House Republicans are desperately trying to find something — anything — to undermine Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation of the Trump campaign,” Mr. Nadler and Representative Elijah E. Cummings, the top Democrat on the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, said in a joint statement Wednesday night. “Unfortunately for them, they were entirely unsuccessful.”
On Thursday, The Democratic leadership in Congress sent a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein that they should remain steadfast and not give in to Republicans’ demands regarding improper requests for prosecutorial information about the Russia investigation. The letter was signed by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi; Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer; Rep. Adam Schiff, ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee; and Sen. Mark Warner, vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee.
The body of the letter lays out the threat of what is actually occurring in Congress as Trumpkin collaborators aid and abet Trump’s conspiracy to obstruct justice:
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein confirmed this departure from FBI procedures and protocols in criminal investigations under threats from authoritarian Trumpkins in his testimony. The FBI “is making unprecedented disclosures” to Congress, including “granting access to hundreds of thousands of pages of investigative information, and thousands of pages of classified documents,” he told lawmakers Thursday. Rosenstein Says Justice Department Providing Congress Documents.
Rosenstein said that “Trump administration officials are meeting and talking with committee staff every day and working overtime with teams of FBI employees to accommodate requests and produce relevant information.”
This should not be occurring. The DOJ and FBI are being corrupted by intense interference in ongoing criminal investigations from Trumpkin collaborators in Congress. These collaborators are aiding and abetting Trump’s attempt to defame and to undermine the DOJ and FBI, and the rule of law.
The GOP resolution adopted on a party-line vote calls for full compliance by July 6 — two days after America’s Independence Day. Trump’s summit with Vladimir Putin is on July 16. During that ten day period, a slow-motion “Saturday night massacre” may very well occur. It is time for heightened vigilance.
“Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty; power is ever stealing from the many to the few.” – Wendell Phillips, Speaking to members of the Massachusetts Anti-Slavery Society on January 28, 1852.