by Sharon Rondeau
(Aug. 16, 2018) — On Thursday night’s “Hannity,” investigative reporter Sara A. Carter told host Sean Hannity that DOJ official Bruce Ohr “holds the key” as to why and how a probe of the Trump campaign was launched alleging “collusion” with Russia in 2016.
In recent days it has been revealed that Ohr was secretly meeting and corresponding with Russia “dossier” author Christopher Steele both before and after the 2016 election.
The documentation released by the DOJ to members of Congress also shows that Steele was apprehensive about being exposed in light of then-FBI Director James Comey’s testimony to members of Congress in March 2017 about the circumstances surrounding the Trump-Russia “collusion” allegations and why they were pursued.
During testimony last month, now-fired FBI counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok revealed for the first time that Ohr provided parts of the dossier to the FBI. With Strzok leading the charge, the agency launched a counterintelligence probe into the Trump campaign on July 31, 2016, if not earlier.
The fourth-highest-ranking DOJ official, Ohr was not authorized to participate in a counterintelligence investigation.
At 9:27 p.m. EDT, Fox News’s Catherine Herridge reported that the newly-available documentation shows that Ohr was “deeply-connected” to the Trump-Russia probe. “The focus is on Ohr’s handling of the dossier,” Herridge quoted Judiciary Committee member Jim Jordan, referring to Ohr’s expected testimony to congressional investigators on August 28.
The dossier’s contents have never been verified but were reportedly circulated to mainstream media outlets prior to the 2016 election. Steele, a previous FBI source, was not authorized to speak to the media about his work and reportedly denied having done so in a court proceeding in his home country of the UK.
Nevertheless, the FBI discontinued using Steele, after which he continued to meet with Ohr. Steele was known to have expressed an animus toward the prospect of Trump’s becoming U.S. president.
The 35-page dossier was used four times to obtain a surveillance warrant on Trump foreign-policy adviser Carter Page, who was never charged with a crime.
Meanwhile, Special Counsel Robert Mueller continues the Trump-Russia probe even as Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani has called for its conclusion within the next several weeks in advance of the midterm elections.
Carter added that Ohr’s texts and handwritten notes demonstrate his “deep ties” to Steele and the dossier, whose sources remain unnamed other than Steele.
Hannity’s subsequent guest, Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, said that the corruption unfolding in connection with the dossier, its origins and Mueller’s investigation is that of a “third-world country.”
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.