Schiff Tales (Updated)

The Intelligence leak about Trump that was turned into an “urgent concern” by the ICIG is starting to smell like a political hit coordinated by the man leading the impeachment charge, Adam Schiff.

This is Adam Schiff from Sept. 19, 2019 claiming that he and his staff had no interaction with the “whistle blower:”

Fast forward to today when this stunning news broke in the NYT, “Schiff Got Early Account of Accusations as Whistle-Blower’s Concerns Grew.”  It turns out that perhaps the most dishonest man in Congress, Adam “I have evidence of Trump’s Collusion With Russia” Schiff, has been dishonest with America yet again.  Consequently, the NYT was doing damage control today, letting us know that in contradiction to Schiff’s prior assertions, his staff actually met with the leaker — and reported it at the time to Schiff — then set the leaker up with an attorney to file a whistle blower complaint.

The C.I.A. officer approached a House Intelligence Committee aide with his concerns about Mr. Trump only after he had had a colleague first convey them to the C.I.A.’s top lawyer. Concerned about how that initial avenue for airing his allegations through the C.I.A. was unfolding, the officer then approached the House aide. In both cases, the original accusation was vague.

The House staff member, following the committee’s procedures, suggested the officer find a lawyer to advise him and meet with an inspector general, with whom he could file a whistle-blower complaint. The aide shared some of what the officer conveyed to Mr. Schiff. The aide did not share the whistle-blower’s identity with Mr. Schiff, an official said. . . .

[(Update:)  Fred Fleitz, former CIA analyst and former NSA official who edited POTUS transcripts of their calls with foreign leaders, states:

This is a much bigger scandal that people realize. . . .  Schiff talked about the Ukraine issue throughout the month of August. The contents of the complaint leaked before it was presented to Congress. There is zero chance in mind mine that Schiff’s HPSCI lawyers were not working hand and glove with the WB and his lawyers.  And here’s the kicker under @HouseIntelComm rules, any classified info brought to the committee from outside sources MUST BE SHARED WITH BOTH SIDES. Schiff broke committee rules by not telling committee GOP members about this.  his is a very serious violation of @HouseIntelComm rules. Why did Schiff do this, especially when he was using this information to score political points throughout the month of August? The reason is clear: it was part of the latest Dem ploy to take down [President Trump] . . .]

The first questions to ask are, why this and why now?  Because, looking at this from the progressive side, this is horrible for the optics of impeachment.  As Tom Bevan, co-founder of Real Clear Politics, opined this afternoon on Fox:

President Trump may consider reported contact between the Ukraine whistleblower and Rep. Adam Schiff’s, D-Calif., House Intelligence Committee as free reign to disparage the impeachment inquiry, according to Tom Bevan.

Schiff also appears to have not been completely forthright about said contact with the whistleblower in the past, the Real Clear Politics co-founder claimed Wednesday on “Special Report.”

“This is a gift to Trump,” he said.

“As everybody’s racing to try and frame the narrative, this is a gift to Donald Trump in the sense that he can now muddy the waters and say ‘look, this was a setup — this was a fraud — this is a hoax’.”

It seems clear that Schiff’s lies about knowing nothing about this complaint were about to be exposed, and this NYT exclusive was an attempt to minimize the damage.  But given Schiff’s prior dishonesty, this gives more than reasonable justification to investigate just how this irregular “urgent concern” whistle blower complaint came about and how it was irregularly handled by the IC IG, Michael Atkinson.  [(Update:)  As Prof. Jacobson at Legal Insurrection writes:

Given that impeachment is an inherently political process, the public is entitled to know all the facts as to how this “whistleblower complaint” was manufactured, including the role of Adam Schiff and Democrat House Intelligence Committee staff.] 

[(Update:)  It appears that Schiff and Pelosi have a way to get around further exposure of their malfeasance as they try to manufacture a coup.  Under Pelosi-Schiff rules for this “impeachment inquiry,” Republicans are not going to be allowed to question the witnesses.  In other words, this is a push not to find evidence, but to create a completely one-sided narrative.  It makes a mockery of due process and the customs and practices of prior impeachment in the House.  It is Schiff and Pelosi turning this nation into something that would embarrass the dictator of a banana republic.  If the House Republicans have any sense, they will physically shut down the House and demand that any process going forward be fair.  They need to become such squeaky wheels that even the Democrats with Bylines have to cover it.]

It’s clear what the left wanted.  The goal was to have this whistle blower complaint come to Congress through official channels with an official finding of “urgent concern.”  It is reasonable to suspect that this whole process was manipulated.

Forget for the moment about the fact that the entire complaint was based on hearsay and bald accusations.  The single most important issue is that the centerpiece of this whole complaint — the fulcrum upon which it rested — was the July 25 conversation between Trump and the President of the Ukraine.  The IG IC, in making a finding that this complaint stated a matter of “urgent concern,” never reviewed the memorialization of that conversation.  Fair enough if he had requested it and been denied.  But HE DID NOT request to see the memorialization.  This from the IG IC’s cover letter:

As part of its preliminary review, the ICIG did not request access to records of the President’s July 25,2019, call with the Ukrainian President [emphasis added] Based on the sensitivity of the alleged urgent concern, I directed ICIG personnel to conduct a preliminary review of the Complainant’s information. Based on the information obtained from the ICIG’s preliminary review·, I decided that access to records of the telephone call was not necessary to make my determination [emphasis added] that the complaint relating to the urgent concern “appears credible.” In addition, given the time consumed by the preliminary review, together with lengthy negotiations that I anticipated over access to and use of records of the telephone call, [emphasis added] particularly for purposes of communicating a disclosure to the congressional intelligence committees, I concluded that it would be highly unlikely for the ICIG to obtain those records within the limited remaining time [emphasis added] allowed by the statute. I also understood from the ICIG’s preliminary review that the National Security Council had already implemented special handling procedures to preserve all records of the telephone calL       

Folks, that is pure bullshit.  The whole centerpiece of the complaint was the memorialization of the actual conversation.  Without it, there was no complaint.  None.  For anyone charged with investigating a complaint to accept hearsay information and NOT EVEN REQUEST to see the actual evidence is simply beyond any possible reasonable explanation — it really is the equivalent of the FBI trying to sell us that it acted reasonably when it accepted a draft report from Crowdstrike as actual evidence that Russia hacked the DNC computers in July, 2016.  And the explanation the IC IG gives is worthless.  His was a complete abdication of due diligence.  The only possible explanation that I can see for such an atrocious dereliction of duty was to get this complaint into Schiff’s hands based on the desired narrative, not the facts as determined by an investigation of the type by which the IC IG was charged with conducting by law.

I would not be surprised at all to find communications between Michael Atkinson and Schiff’s staff — or Schiff himself — about the processing of this complaint prior to August 26, 2019 when the IG IC submitted this “urgent concern” finding to the acting DNI, Joseph Maguire.  And given that Schiff lied about his involvement in the start of this whistle blower complaint, there is more than ample justification to fully investigate that.  For if that was the case and Schiff was conspiring with the IC IG — and clearly this was meant to undergird an impeachment of the duly elected President — then this was an act of sedition under 18 U.S. Code § 2384.  Put all these bastards in jail and throw away the key.

Then, a close second, is the question of how the IC IG entertained a complaint based wholly on hearsay evidence when the memorialization of the call was on file  Even for a simple criminal complaint, a person would have to either swear to facts based on personal, first hand knowledge, or police could investigate a tip.  No arrest could ever be made on hearsay evidence alone, regardless of from how many sources.  And we’re going to upend the government and impeach a duly elected president based on a scenario that would not allow for a probable cause warrant to arrest or search for shoplifting?  This stinks to high heaven of a political hit.  And that is before even getting to the fact that it appears the IC IG’s acceptance of hearsay complaints was based on a recent change to their internal procedure, something yet to be explained.  Likewise, recent changes to the Congressional Research Service need to be explained as well:

Sean Davis wrote Friday about a secret update to the intelligence community inspector general’s “Disclosure of Urgent Concern” complaint intake form. It revamped the procedure to allow hearsay complaints, while prior versions of the form had included an admonishment that the IC IG could not find a complaint credible without “reliable, first-hand information.” While it appears the IC IG has the statutory right to promulgate new procedures, the rationale for the change and the curious nature of the timing has still not been shared.

Compelling new evidence now shows that the purportedly nonpartisan Congressional Research Service (CRS) may have been weaponized to mislead members of Congress and the American people — all in the name of advancing the impeachment process against President Trump. It appears that misleading guidance about precisely how expansive the Intelligence Community Whistleblower Protection Act (ICWPA) is was incorporated into the report just as the current whistleblower controversy began to pick up steam.

The NYT revelation of today was no doubt the first of many to come.  Oh, and by the way:

[Update:  Twitter has taken down the picture in the above twitter post, showing Joe and Hunter Biden golfing with a Bursima executive.  Here is that picture.

Biden needs to explain what is going on, since he claimed to have no idea that Hunter was cashing in everywhere his father went.  Joe needs to stop trying to strong arm networks into silencing this news.  Where does he think he is, Ukraine?

[Update:  The truth is, it is probably already too late for Biden.  The antics of he and son Hunter are making it into the MSM.  Biden’s days are numbered as a presidential candidate.

Stay tuned and stock up on the popcorn.  The cold civil war looks to be fighting on the battlefield at Gettysburg at the moment.