DID ROSENSTEIN SIGN A FISA APPLICATION KNOWING IT CONTAINED UNVETTED INFORMATION?
by Sharon Rondeau
(Dec. 5, 2018) — On Wednesday night’s “Hannity,” a column released earlier in the day by The Hill’s John Solomon was featured in which Solomon wrote that emails a number of House Republicans have said they wish to review which “show the FBI was aware — before it secured the now-infamous warrant — that there were intelligence community concerns about the reliability of the main evidence used to support it: the Christopher Steele dossier.”
Solomon was Hannity’s first guest following his “opening monologue,” which was shorter than usual.
The FBI and DOJ submitted the Steele-compiled dossier to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) to make the case for obtaining surveillance warrants for a year on former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, which inevitably captured Page’s communications with fellow campaign aides and untold others.
The FISA applications did not indicate to the court that the dossier was a product of political opposition activity.
Steele, a former MI6 agent, was commissioned by Fusion GPS to gather opposition research on Trump; Fusion was in turn commissioned by the DNC and Hillary Clinton campaign.
Prior to the 2016 campaign, Steele had served as an FBI informant. The agency reportedly fired Steele after discovering that he had improper contacts with the media about his work on the dossier.
“If the FBI knew of his media contacts and the concerns about the reliability of his dossier before seeking the warrant, it would constitute a serious breach of FISA regulations and the trust that the FISA court places in the FBI,” Solomon wrote in his column, titled, “FBI email chain may provide most damning evidence of FISA abuses yet.”
At 9:11 p.m., Solomon said he has been told that former FBI Director James Comey’s emails are among those now sought by the House Intelligence Committee constituting convincing evidence that the FBI was aware of the “unverified” status of the dossier. Solomon cited the committee’s chairman, Devin Nunes, as having “amended” his request to the DOJ and FBI for evidence the committee, and others, have yet to see relative to their investigations into the FBI’s launching of an investigation into the Trump campaign for alleged “collusion” with Russia.
At 9:16 p.m., Hannity asked Solomon why President Trump has not released the documents in question, which Trump had said he would have declassified in September but then changed his mind several days later. Solomon responded that he believes Trump will eventually release them after sufficient deliberation is performed by the appropriate government officials.
“’If these documents are released, the American public will have clear and convincing evidence to see the FISA warrant that escalated the Russia probe just before Election Day was flawed and the judges [were] misled,’ one knowledgeable source told me,” Solomon wrote. “Congressional investigators also have growing evidence that some evidence inserted into the fourth and final application for the FISA — a document signed by current Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein — was suspect.”
Republicans on the House Judiciary and Oversight & Government Reform Committees have wanted to depose Rosenstein since September 21, when The New York Times published an article claiming that Rosenstein had told a handful of FBI and DOJ officials of a plan he reportedly crafted to remove Trump from office last year. Rosenstein has not yet testified.
On Tuesday night’s “Hannity,” Rep. Jim Jordan, a member of the House Judiciary Committee, reminded the audience that there remain 26 days until the House will be led by the Democrats as an outcome of the 2018 midterm elections. Democrats have said they intend to pursue other issues once they obtain the majority in early January, including subpoenas for Trump’s tax returns and actions he has taken while president with which they disagree.
They might also seek Trump’s impeachment, although it is not clear on what grounds they believe he has committed “high crimes and misdemeanors.”
Comey is expected to testify privately to the House Judiciary and Oversight Committees by week’s end in response to a subpoena.
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.