AND CONTACTS WITH ITS AUTHOR
by Sharon Rondeau
(Aug. 10, 2018) — On Friday evening, House Freedom Caucus founder Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC11) tweeted that the once-fourth-ranking official at the U.S. Justice Department, Bruce Ohr, will testify to “Congress” on August 28 about “why he had 60+ contacts with dossier author, Chris Steele, as far back as January 2016,” according to Meadows.
An article published Tuesday by John Solomon of The Hill reported that Ohr and Steele met after the 2016 presidential election, although the number of times was not stated specifically. Ohr was reportedly conveying parts of the dossier, assembled by Steele from unknown sources at the behest of Fusion GPS, to the FBI purportedly to demonstrate that Donald Trump and/or his campaign aides had maintained communications with Kremlin operatives to win the election over Hillary Clinton.
In 2016 Ohr’s wife Nellie was employed by Fusion GPS, which was paid through law firm Perkins Coie on behalf of the DNC to gather opposition research on Trump for the Clinton campaign.
Steele, a British citizen and former MI6 agent, reportedly was determined to see that Trump did not become U.S. president. Steele was paid by the FBI to serve as a confidential human source (CHS) prior to the assembling of the dossier but was later found to have violated his agreement with the agency after he leaked information to the media.
Beginning in October 2016, the dossier was repeatedly submitted as evidence to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) to gain a surveillance warrant on former Trump foreign policy adviser Carter Page despite its unverified and politically-garnered content of which the court was not advised. Documentation released by the Justice Department last month shows that the surveillance continued through June 2017, one month after former FBI director Robert Mueller was brought in by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to serve as Special Counsel for the “collusion” investigation.
It is not yet clear if Ohr will testify to the entire Congress or a number of congressional committees on the 28th. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte is reportedly issuing subpoenas to individuals associated with the use of the dossier against Trump which could include Ohr.
Meadows is a member of the Judiciary Committee. The House Oversight & Government Reform Committee, chaired by Trey Gowdy, has also been actively investigating the origins of the Trump-Russia dossier, along with the House Intelligence Committee.
House Intel Committee Chairman Devin Nunes told Sean Hannity earlier this week that Ohr would become a central figure in the ongoig investigation into alleged Trump-Russia “collusion.” Some have opined that the Democrats engaged in “collusion” with the Kremlin and not the Trump campaign.
Nunes said in April that the electronic communication (EC) Rosenstein permitted him to view revealed no intelligence which would have justified the opening of the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into the Trump operation.
Sharon Rondeau has operated The Post & Email since April 2010, focusing on the Obama birth certificate investigation and other government corruption news. She has reported prolifically on constitutional violations within Tennessee’s prison and judicial systems.