May 20, 2020

"Republicans have seized on the document as potential evidence that the outgoing president had ordered the FBI to spy on the new administration..."

"... as Trump has alleged. And they have raised questions about the 'unusual' nature of Rice memorializing the conversation in an email to herself, suggesting that in warning Comey to proceed 'by the book,' Obama was implying that top law enforcement officials had done the opposite. Meanwhile, a spokesperson for Rice said it shows the Obama administration handled the Flynn situation appropriately. The email, most of which was already declassified, describes a Jan. 5, 2017, Oval Office meeting that followed up on an intelligence briefing about Russian interference in the 2016 election. Attendees included then-President Barack Obama; Comey; Sally Yates, who was the acting attorney general; Vice President Joe Biden; and Rice, who was Flynn's predecessor in the job. The email, which memorialized the meeting two weeks after it happened, said Obama wanted to be sure 'every aspect of this issue is handled by the Intelligence and law enforcement communities "by the book."' 'The president stressed that he is not asking about, initiating or instructing anything from a law enforcement perspective,' the email continued. 'He reiterated that our law enforcement team needs to proceed as it normally would by the book.'"

From "Trump administration declassifies full Susan Rice email sent on Inauguration Day/The email describes a Jan. 5, 2017, Oval Office meeting about Michael Flynn and Russian interference in the 2016 election" (Politico).

MORE:

“Director Comey affirmed that he is proceeding ‘by the book’ as it relates to law enforcement,” Rice wrote. “From a national security perspective, Comey said he does have some concerns that incoming NSA Flynn is speaking frequently with Russian Ambassador Kislyak. Comey said that could be an issue as it relates to sharing sensitive information. President Obama asked if Comey was saying that the NSC should not pass sensitive information related to Russia to Flynn. Comey replied ‘potentially.’ He added that he has no indication thus far that Flynn has passed classified information to Kislyak, but he noted that ‘the level of communication is unusual.’ The President asked Comey to inform him if anything changes in the next few weeks that should affect how we share classified information with the incoming team. Comey said that he would.”

141 comments:

TreeJoe said...

Wow, what a whitewash article.

"By the Book".....except suggesting that they should withhold information about the investigation itself and Russia intel. Except the outgoing president suggesting withholding on discussions around a major global antagonist.

MikeR said...

"that the outgoing president had ordered the FBI to spy on the new administration" It certainly does not. It shows that the outgoing president allowed them to do that, and was fine with them doing that, and asked them to do it without incriminating him. That's pretty obvious in his words. Just the kind of things that loyal underlings take care of so the boss doesn't need to know about it.

rhhardin said...

Why didn't she say she hadn't robbed the bank.

The reason is that she didn't rob the bank. It doesn't come up.

Wince said...

While I think them "memo to self" was an attempt to spread some cover, I read this as much more in terms of Rice covering her own ass.

In other words, whatever these guys are up to behind the scenes, they assured me and to my knowledge they were acting "by the book".

Rice smelled a rat, and wanted to document "I know nuthing!"

Sebastian said...

As noted in last night's cafe: "the most remarkable thing about the full declassification is that the key paragraph had been classified for so long to begin with. The deep state had its claws in that one."

MayBee said...

Comey said that could be an issue as it relates to sharing sensitive information. President Obama asked if Comey was saying that the NSC should not pass sensitive information related to Russia to Flynn. Comey replied ‘potentially.’ He added that he has no indication thus far that Flynn has passed classified information to Kislyak, but he noted that ‘the level of communication is unusual.’ The President asked Comey to inform him if anything changes in the next few weeks that should affect how we share classified information with the incoming team.

This bolded line is what strikes me (aside from all the weird "by the book"s). Flynn was the incoming national security advisor, and Trump was about to be POTUS. There's no stopping that. So how long did Obama and Comey think they could keep intelligence about Russia from them? How long did they intend to keep intelligence from them? What intelligence? And why?

If they thought the trick was to get rid of Flynn because he is dangerous, you have to tell Trump. But Obama's outgoing administration planned to keep information from the incoming administration. That can't be done by the book. The former POTUS doesn't control the intelligence anymore.

Patrick Henry was right! said...

So, did Comey follow up and further inform President Obama as he promised he would?
If so, when, how and with whom?

tim maguire said...

All this repetition of "by the book" puts me in mind of Wrath of Khan: '...no uncoded messages on an open channel.'

People going by the book don't need to keep bringing up the importance of going by the book.

Automatic_Wing said...

Those darn Republicans, there they go again, "seizing" and "pouncing"!

Wince said...

"In this department, we go by-the-book!"

"'BYE BOOK."

tim maguire said...

Oh yeah, and REPUBLICANS POUNCE!!!!

Darury said...

Are we sure they didn't pounce? I thought we already siezed earlier this week, so we're due for a pounce.

Michael K said...

Well, we know gadfly is satisfied so there must be nothing there, eh?

Flynn is to be excluded from intelligence info because ......? Frequent calls to the Russian ambassador? How many ? We know of one.

There is still no 302 from the FBI interview. Yet Sullivan, the judge, wants to keep prosecuting Flynn based on a missing 302.

Nicholas said...

It's all perfectly understandable when you realise that "the book" that this was to be done by was a book written by Hillary's political mentor, Saul Alinsky.

zipity said...


Nothing, and I mean NOTHING was done "by the book".

Comey himself said he ignored proper protocol and sent two FBI agents over the White House bypassing the White House Counsel, to set a purgrey trap for Flynn. Strzok himself intervened to prop up the sham investigation into Flynn AFTER all the other investigators said there was NOTHING there.

Then there was the egregious unmasking done in the final weeks of the Obama administration, by White House staff who had NO business requesting any unmasking.

They weren't investigators, they were political hacks, spying on the opposition.

Leland said...

Ah yes, "Republicans seized"!

The only thing the Obama Administration has going for them is the large number of Republicans that participated in the cover up. That's not a good sign for those of us being governed.

iowan2 said...

but he noted that ‘the level of communication is unusual'.

The most obvious takeaway is the FBI captured all the executive branch communications for years, at least back to Mueller. How else to measure 'level of communication'. But who else is the FBI creeping on, 'for our safety'(insert Founding Fathers quote here)?
.

Jake said...

It’s a rorschach test.

Wince said...

Another "Republicans seize" story. Maybe the media hopes that if Republicans seize, they might swallow their tongues?

But the science doesn't support that...

Swallowing Tongue: Why It's Impossible
https://www.healthline.com/health/swallowing-tongue

It's impossible for a person to swallow their tongue. While a person loses a lot of muscle control during a seizure, there is tissue in your mouth beneath your tongue that holds it in place. While a person's tongue doesn't move much during a seizure, there is a risk that they might bite their tongue.

Lloyd W. Robertson said...

One simple comment is that a who's who of senior officials went on TV and lied, saying they had evidence of Trump-Russia. Months later, testifying under oath to Congress, they said they never had such evidence. Everyone who saw the Flynn-Kislyak transcript knew there was nothing there. The Steele dossier was always bullshit--cooked up at the instigation of British and U.S. intelligence, not a genuine piece of "information" magically flowing from Russian officials. Co-ordination of speaking points by so many senior officials points to Obama. They would have done it for him if he asked; it seems unlikely there was anyone else, including Hillary, they would have done this for. Biden wouldn't be up to it, and again wouldn't act without Obama's say-so.

Milo Minderbinder said...

Rice’s post hoc memo-to-file would (should) embarrass most 1Ls

Birkel said...

Have we gotten to the pounced part of the MSM script so soon?

wendybar said...

Republicans SEIZE?? How about Progressive Democrats are rotten to the core, and spied on the Trump administration, and set up General Flynn??? Politico sucks.

Danno said...

To Comey, two phone calls with Kislyak was frequent? Sure.

h said...

This is related to an argument I saw about the legitimacy of inspectors general (probably by McCarthy on NRO). In this argument, the President is the sole individual in whom executive branch authority lies; all others act as directed by or with power delegated by the President. The idea that FBI director Comey could make a decision to not inform the President of information, or to not inform the person (Flynn) the President directs, is the essence of the argument that there is a "deep state".

Lucid said...

Republicans seize!

Greg Hlatky said...

Republicans seize!

Republican scandals are all about Republicans.

Democratic scandals are all about the Republican response to the scandal.

I Callahan said...

"Seized"

David Begley said...

Potential evidence? Try actual evidence.

Rice tried to shift blame to Comey. But common sense tells everyone that Comey would not have acted from the very beginning without an order or approval from Barack.

The Fake News can’t handle the truth.

tcrosse said...

Republicans: more pounce to the ounce.

NotWhoIUsedtoBe said...

By the book, hours would seem like days.

Tim said...

Of course it is ass covering. They were caught and knew it after Trump was informed by Adm. Rogers. "A Beautiful Black Sky".

Timotheus said...

Yes, she wrote "by the book". And she wrote it twice. That's how we know it was "by the book" < wink >.

traditionalguy said...

By the book for 2 weeks after 2 years of pretending there was no book is an admission of intent to break the law Until cover up time.. Too little too late to prevent what Hillary said was all of them being hung for High Treason until dead. That’s what the feared book says.

Kai Akker said...

AG Barr has all but said he would not indict Obama in this caper, no matter what.

The rule of law says he should be indicted, assuming the evidence is there. It certainly appears to be.

Is it better for the country to give the immediate past president a pass? Or is it better to go by the book and indict anyone, including Obama, who attempted to subvert an election and stage a non-violent coup?

I lean to the latter. Even through throwing your predecessor in jail is a Third World staple, the attempted coup is so huge a piece of lawbreaking that it demands justice.

But I can also see the case for forebearance of the previous president, though he probably does not deserve it. If Comey, Brennan, Clapper and McCabe (at the least) are prosecuted, it will certainly show others not to use their government positions for corrupt activities. Is that enough?

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

hmmmmm

BarrySanders20 said...

It was a COAMA email. Cover Obama's And My Ass. Written two weeks after the meeting and "sent" to herself. Perfectly normal behavior. Nothing to see here. Obama totally did not order the Code Red. Did you know Trump is taking hydroxychloroquine?

MadisonMan said...

You know what kind of people go by the book? Top Men.

Tom T. said...

Grenell is a national treasure.

Lnelson said...

Obama rose to the top of the most corrupt political machine in America without making waves. What did we expect?

Howard said...

A real smoking gub

MayBee said...

It *is* pretty interesting that the FBI director knows the incoming NSA has been having a lot of conversations with Kislyak.

Sometimes I wonder what the Obama admin people were afraid the Russians would tell the incoming American officials?

Mike Sylwester said...

On December 30, 2016, President Obama expelled 35 Russian diplomats because of alleged meddling in the USA's 2016 election. In fact, there was no meddling and there was no evidence that any of these diplomats had done anything along those lines.

Obama expelled the Russian diplomats in order to poison US-Russian relations for the new President and also set up future accusations that Trump and his campaign staff had colluded with Russians. Obama was setting up a situation in which any efforts by the Trump administration to correct US-Russian relations would be denounced as proof of such collusion.

That was Obmama's strategy to undermine Trump's new Presidency, and the actions against Michael Flynn were the first practical employment of Obama's strategy.

traditionalguy said...

B2 was taunting the Dems. He won’t indict Obama-Biden for This crime of spying without a FISA Order. Why would he when the list of offenses He can chose among include massive theft by fraud against the USA and Thousands of Child Trafficking crimes charged at Military Tribunals. That way Obama-Biden end up penniless and awaiting execution at Gitmo.

Wince said...

Ted Cruz @tedcruz
In Star Trek II (Wrath of Kahn - the best of the series), when Kirk says “by the book” it’s code to mean he’s lying. 🤔🤔

Rice probably felt like she was "redshirt" (not Uhura!) about to be beamed down to the planet while wearing a red Starfleet uniform.

In Star Trek, red-uniformed security officers and engineers who accompany the main characters on landing parties often suffer quick deaths.

Bob Boyd said...

Our law enforcement team needs to proceed as it normally would and throw the book

MayBee said...

What the Russians did to meddle with the election....supposedly...is place some Facebook ads. Possibly they hacked the DNC server and Podesta's emails, but we have to go with Crowdstrike on that, the FBI and CIA don't know anything outside of what they tell them, and that's murky.

While Obama was still President, he claims he told Putin to knock it off. But instead of briefing the Trump campaign and then the Trump incoming admin about this, they thought it best to hide intel about Russia from them.
They then poisoned the well by announcing info about the dossier. Trump spoke at the CIA to much approval, but the story coming out was that Trump had spoken about standing in front of the heroes wall. So we were being primed to think Trump was really against the intel community, but we also know now parts of the intel community were kicking in to smear him.

Finally, we got question after question to Trump about whether he was for America, and "believed" the 17 intelligence agencies that Russia "meddled" with our election, or whether he was for Putin, and didn't believe it. Well, now we know there was reason to doubt the assessment. But after that, every time Trump talked to Putin it was turned into a national cases about Trump being alone with Putin.

So I start to wonder what the Obama people were afraid Putin would say to Trump. What they were afraid to tell the Trump people about Russia. Why it was so important to keep Russia and the incoming administration from speaking?

Rory said...

With all the push-me-pull-you that went on in this plot, it's possible that the sanctions were imposed to inspire communication between Flynn and the Russians.

Sebastian said...

"Republicans have seized on the document"

Dem problem? "Republicans pounce"

wendybar said...

"James Comey already admitted the manner in which he set up the FBI meeting with General Flynn was deliberately not done by the book. So why would anyone believe Susan Rice’s odd, CYA, last-day memo to herself?" - Ari Fleischer

I'm Not Sure said...

"'He reiterated that our law enforcement team needs to proceed as it normally would by the book.'"

If you think you have to tell people to proceed "by the book" in order to be sure it gets done that way, I wonder what people were doing before being told. Kind of reminds me of google's "Don't be evil".

MayBee said...

Rory and Mike Sylwester-

It is Dan Bongino's theory that those expulsions happened when the did because Flynn was in the Dominican Republic, the expulsions would definitely prompt a call between the incoming NSA and the Russian Ambassador, and it would be easy for the Obama admin to spot a Dominican Republic/Kislyak phone call.

John Borell said...

Seizing...pouncing...

Don't worry, the media and the left will take this very, very seriously if a Republican ever does this to a Democrat.

Very seriously. And somberly.

It will be the gravest threat to our democracy (hint: we have a republic). And when Republicans mention double standard, we'll be told everyone has re-evaluated. And realized they were wrong back then.

It's almost like we've seen this playbook before. Oh, we have. See Bill Clinton. And Joe Biden.

To be clear, I personally think this is a shitshow regardless of party affiliation. Kind of like #believeallwomen


Sebastian said...

"Possibly they hacked the DNC server and Podesta's emails, but we have to go with Crowdstrike on that, the FBI and CIA don't know anything outside of what they tell them, and that's murky."

But we now have Crowdstrike testimony attesting that they didn't have proof either.

Anyway, useful speculations here that the sanctions imposed late by Obama were themselves an attempt to poison the waters and bait the incoming team.

Big Mike said...

but we have to go with Crowdstrike on that

FYI, Crowdstrike has admitted that they never actually examined the server. Consequently the assumption that Russians hacked the DNC server is at this point an unsupported hypothesis. What we do know is that Podesta's Email file was downloaded at a rate many times too fast for an Internet connection but consistent with downloading to a thumb drive.

At the time this information came out I was teaching a class on Internet communications at a local business school and I was tempted to turn this into an exam question. However I settled for folding it into one of my lectures.

stevew said...

Use "seized" to indicate that the Republicans are the bad guys in all of this (and everything else).

buwaya said...

Back again to persons. These people would not even have thought of trying this stuff if they didn't think the system would behave as it actually has.

When Trump walked into the White House he was NOT in charge. Its taken him years to get some purchase on the reins of some bits of it, but the system is still fighting bitterly.

As I predicted many months before the election, every mans hand was against him, every institution was lined up with every other, like a wall. This is because the whole situation is collective, not individual (save for the lone Wild Card, Trump).

None of these institutions are acting according to the laws that should be governing them. You have a case of caste warfare in effect, and as in any war the law is irrelevant.

It is futile to chase down individuals. What you need, to win, is to destroy these institutions. I doubt Trump will go there.

Skeptical Voter said...

In my experience the only time a person writes a CYA memo is if there is something to cover. If there truly is "nothing to see here" then the person doesn't write the memo.

Tom said...

So, Comey was pre-hung out to dry. He had assured everyone outside the FBI the Trump-Flynn-Page, etc investigations were “by the book” when it’s clear that’s not how the FBI conducted it’s business.

You know, plausible deniability was invented for Nixon and it didn’t work for him. It shouldn’t work for Obama. We need a full airing of how these investigations began and how they were conducted. At minimum, everyone’s actions need to be out in the sunshine. And, I think a criminal investigation is likely warranted. Maybe Susan Rice will be more transparent with a grand jury.

Ken B said...

Here's a tell: “ most of which was already declassified”. That’s an attempt to minimize, but of course hiding just part of an email is very suspicious! It's more incriminating if you think about it. The Hitler Ribbentrop pact was mostly published too, but there were secret clauses!

buwaya said...

The "intel community" is a fundamental threat to any political order. It is too easy to corrupt such things into all sorts of monsters. If you Americans want to actually work on that necessary chore of institutional destruction, start there.

AlbertAnonymous said...

The frustrating thing about the Barr/Durham probe is that it’s like pulling a sting or peeling an onion. Piece after piece of OMFG info (redacted for years for little to no good reason) but no action against the cult-prits. All foreplay with no satisfying release. Someone (or multiple someones) need to get Fucked.

I’m hoping that the long game WILL finally be satisfying. The drip drip drip sucks because the left and the media (BIRM) keep lying anyway with their Orwellian double-speak (lie in public on TV about evidence of collusion - then admit under oath in private that they had NONE).

We need some real action and soon. Dominoes fall but there has to be the first push. Start already. Issue one indictment. Just one. Then watch the rats start scurrying and turning on each other. At some point it needs to overwhelm the cabal press so they can’t lie about it anymore. They’ll downplay it or spin or whatever, by the basic facts need to come out.

Flynn’s original 302. AYFKM? Turn it over now fuckers.

AZ Bob said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bay Area Guy said...

Biden defense: No, I didn't grab her by the pussy, wink, wink, I grabbed her by the book.

Mark O said...

“Who writes such a memo (Rice) and who speaks those words (Obama, Comey)? If you are actually playing by the book, you don’t need to say you are playing by the book. It’s a consciousness of guilt...”

From https://legalinsurrection.com/2020/05/susan-rices-consciousness-of-guilt/

Inga said...

Nothingburger...again.

Nichevo said...

I noticed that you have made the format more ugly, but, threading? I thought you lived and died by chronological comments, Althouse.

Original Mike said...

It must be crushing Inga that her three year wet dream has come crashing down. Her side is actually the baddies. I alternate days between feeling satisfied and feeling sorry for her. I am I feeling sorry for her today? Let me check the calendar…

Nope.

Lurker21 said...

In cop and spy shows, "We have to do this by the book," often means "We have to bury all evidence so we don't get caught."

buwaya said...

Im not kidding about institutional destruction.
What I mean is the same thing as a corporate Chap 7, of which I have seen a ton. All employees dismissed, empty buildings and equipment sold, no functions carried over, websites down and phone numbers reassigned.

Levi Starks said...

“By the book”..... We discussed a lot of options, hoping of course that this wouldn’t happen, and as much as it grieves me to say it, after exploring all our options, we have no choice but to go by the book.

Bay Area Guy said...

Here's the take-home FACT about the Russian Collusion issue:

During the 2016 campaign, in fact, during the entire year from Jan 1 - December 31, 2016, how many people did Obama's AG arrest or indict for unlawful acts relating to the Presidential campaign?

The answer is.....ZERO.

Must have not been a big deal at the time, wink, wink.

MayBee said...

Big Mike and Sebastian- right! And yet isn't it interesting that Trump's own doubting of the Crowdstrike information as portrayed but the US Intel community has twice been used against him! Once as proof he sided with Putin (in Helsinki). Once as part of his impeachment.

MayBee said...

Inga- I would like to know what you think of one Admin discussing hiding information from the Administration to take over in just a few days.

Bob Smith said...

Now that it’s clear that the spying was pervasive it’s also clear that Obama directed it.. None of Barry’s underlings took a whiz without permission. He sicced the IRS on the Tea Party with a joke at a dinner and more recently he gave that Sullivan guy his marching orders with a “leaked” phone call. At my age I have a tough time finding a s*** to give. For you younger folks think of the opportunities you’ll have to make friends standing in line to buy food.

buwaya said...

Considering that the intel agencies are discrete and concentrated, and entirely government funded, it should be fairly easy to abolish them. As easy as anything in this institutional destruction thing is going to be, which is a list of impossibles.

Much harder will be your universities as their support, funding and connections are diffuse and complex.

rcocean said...

This just in..Nixon was innocent!

Researchers at the Nixon Library have found the following H.R. Haldermann memo:

Memo To: HR Haldermann
From: HR Haldermann
Subject: Watergate
Date: August 1, 1972

Met with Nixon and Dean, today. President said Watergate must be handled "by the book" and there be "No cover-up - period". Dean said there might be some problems with Colson but will monitor the situation. Nixon said OK but repeated he wanted things done "by the book". We then discussed other matters.

There you have it. Nixon - Mr. Innocent.

rcocean said...

Why would Obama need to tell the head of the FBI to obey the law and regulations? Why was the lame duck President talking to the FBI about wiretapping the incoming NSA adviser - two weeks before he left office? Why isn't he informing Trump of EVERYTHING, since Trump's going to be the next President.

Why is he discussing "what to tell the Trump's National security team", when this team will be in CHARGE of national security in two weeks?

Its like LBJ asking Hoover what to tell Nixon about the Vietnam War in Jan 1969. Can we trust Nixon? Crazy.

bgates said...

We should spend more time considering the possibility that everything about the Obama administration was worse than we ever imagined.

Mike (MJB Wolf) said...

I feel moderated right out of the convo here.

Original Mike said...

"Much harder will be your universities as their support, funding and connections are diffuse and complex."

The Wuhan Flu is making a dent in them. It remains to be seen how big a dent.

rcocean said...

MSM take:

1) Obama? Innocent until evidence says he's not. Stop the conspiracy mongering! How unfair to attack Obama without clear cut, substantial evidence. Give us facts.

2) Trump? Guilty until evidence says he's not. Non-stop speculation & conspiracy-mongering. Facts? We don't need no stinking facts. Trump's done something wrong, we just know it.

Original Mike said...

Blogger rhhardin said..."Why didn't she say she hadn't robbed the bank."

Hey, Joe! Remember that bank we didn't rob?…No, the other one.

iowan2 said...

Neal Eggelston, White House Counsel asked Rice to write a memo documenting the Jan 5 meeting.

Just reported on FOX 10:02 CDT.

So exactly how is White House Counsel in on this?

More informed people than I will need to connect this particular dot, to other dots.

wendybar said...

Bob Smith said...
Now that it’s clear that the spying was pervasive it’s also clear that Obama directed it.. None of Barry’s underlings took a whiz without permission. He sicced the IRS on the Tea Party with a joke at a dinner and more recently he gave that Sullivan guy his marching orders with a “leaked” phone call. At my age I have a tough time finding a s*** to give. For you younger folks think of the opportunities you’ll have to make friends standing in line to buy food.
5/20/20, 9:47 AM

I, too, am at that phase in my life. I have no kids, no grandkids, and am sick of fighting the fight for ungrateful youngers who praise Socialism....I don't care anymore. Let it happen, and I will sit back and say "Told you so" before they cart me off to kill me off. You get what you vote for.

iowan2 said...

but he noted that ‘the level of communication is unusual.

Good to know. When Radcliffe takes over for Grennell, President Trump can install him in the newly created, White House office of spying on political campaigns. Congress, and SCOTUS.

Jamie said...

The Rorschach test comment above is probably correct, with regard to the actual email.

But seriously. The Obama administration was very clearly acting as if there was a reasonable expectation that the Trump administration could be prevented from taking over on January 20. How, and why, else even discuss the possibility of withholding information that they'd absolutely have a right to have (in fact, would be the only ones with that right) a couple of weeks later? So the tree of intent had two branches: either the Obama administration believed it was doing the right thing for the nation and that the Trump administration would properly be prevented from taking office on January 20 due to some overwhelmingly convincing evidence of wrongdoing, or the Obama administration believed that it could somehow overturn the 2016 election result on its own. (There's a third possibility - that all of this was just a case of removing the w's from the keyboards - just a bunch of overgrown frat boys pranking their successors. Which, given that Obama was clearly informed about it all, would make him one of the frat boys.)

We know there was no such overwhelmingly convincing evidence that the incoming Trump administration has engaged in criminal activity # there was literally no passivity that the Trump administration could have been prevented on any legal grounds from taking over on January 20. And that's not a Rorschach test.

Jack Klompus said...

"Inga- I would like to know what you think of one Admin discussing hiding information from the Administration to take over in just a few days."

That would require her to possess the ability to think.

Original Mike said...

I agree with Rice on one thing. Let's see the transcript of the call. It had better be good.

iowan2 said...

My comma at 10:09 was directed at the comment, the Rice note to self was a nothing burger. Wrong cut a paste appeared

narciso said...

And then we have this fool



https://mobile.twitter.com/julie_kelly2/status/1263115193514708995

Yancey Ward said...

"Consciousness of guilt" is the phrase the entire unredacted e-mail should bring to ones mind. In other words, there is one and only one explanation for why and when this e-mail was written- Obama and Rice knew what was going on was entirely improper, so they laid it at Comey's doorstep. I think Obama probably was still seething over Comey's ineptitude over the last minute Clinton E-mail investigation in late October, and so sandbagged the tall sack of shit to cover his own ass. It probably amused Obama greatly to do this, as it probably should.

You somewhat lose the context of this by describing it only as an "inauguration day" e-mail- Rice deliberately waited until after Trump was officially the President to write the e-mail to file. She did this so that the e-mail wouldn't be locked away from public view in the Obama' White House's staff electronic records (remember, Rice wasn't a Senate confirmed executive branch officer like Comey)- in short, a "get out of jail free card" is no good if no one can easily access it when it matters most.

David53 said...

He reiterated that our law enforcement team...

Our, meaning the people loyal to him or all the non-partisan law enforcement officials involved?

Original Mike said...

wendybar said…"You get what you vote for."

Except in this case we voted for Trump, yet didn't really get him. That was the point of Obamagate.

W.B. Picklesworth said...

I don't need to read the article because it says everything in the first two words, "Republicans seized..." That means that they have the goods over against Democrats and it's damning.

MikeR said...

Black and brown people. It isn't clear to me that that study isn't using black and brown as a proxy for the real cause, which is poverty. It is a lot harder to socially distance properly if you live in a crowded poor neighborhood and apartment, and have the kind of job that you can't do from a distance.
If that is the true cause, it could be that all the restaurant workers are in the same boat regardless of race.
Truth is that I don't understand your post. The CDC is trying to give guidelines for how to reopen as safely as possible. You don't want them to say anything because of discrimination issues? Personally I'd rather hear what they have to say, so we can try to decide what to do afterward.
What's going to happen now, the liberals and the conservatives switch seats again, with the liberals raging about discrimination against black and brown people and the conservatives raging about political correctness getting in the way? Or the other way round?

Bay Area Guy said...

The recently discovered "handwritten" memo of Susan Rice

Date: 1/5/20
To: Me
From: Me
Re: Meeting with Potus and spies
_________________________________

Oh shit. Still can't fucking believe we lost. Potus is pissed. Why didn't we leak the FISA stuff, before the election? Fuck, we all thought Hillary would win. Fucking pollsters. Brennan is gone, but says that Flynn is a problem. Brennan does not want Flynn rummaging through all our shit. Comey is staying behind, maybe he stays, maybe he gets canned. He'll put the screws on Flynn, early, get him out of there.

Have to see how it plays out, but Potus wants a full court press on the Russian thing to trip up Trump. Too damn little, too late, I say. But it was all done "by the book." Yeah, right, LOL. Hope it doesn't fuck with my gig at Brookings.

Bruce Hayden said...

“ AG Barr has all but said he would not indict Obama in this caper, no matter what.”

“The rule of law says he should be indicted, assuming the evidence is there. It certainly appears to be.”

Maybe, but indicting a former President would be a big problem. Needless to say, it would be horrible precedent, and future Administrations, and esp Dem Administrations, would consider doing so as a matter of course. Banana republic politics at is worst.

But there are significant legal issues too, as a result of a President’s Article II powers. All legal power is delegated from his plenary Executive power, including all discretion, which includes, but isn’t limited to prosecutorial and investigatory discretion. Moreover he has plenary pardon power. Arguably, when Obama said that Crooked Hillary did nothing wrong, any prosecution of her would have been illegal, since he had already utilized his prosecutorial discretion, revoked the discretion of anyone below them, and concurrently essentially pardoned her. Comey’s idiotic statement about no actual intent (when the standard included gross negligence) can be viewed as just trying to put lipstick on a pig, that this was a raw, public, use of Obama’s Article II powers. Did Obama violate the FISA rules that DAG Yates had loosened up so much? Arguably not, since her power to make those rules was his, delegated to her.

If this sounds like Presidents have almost unlimited Executive power, that is because that was how our Constitutional system was designed. Consider the alternative - that the Executive Branch can operate without his power and discretion. What are the limiting principles then? The key here is that a President can be removed through impeachment, must be re-elected every four years, and can serve only two full terms (10 years total). The big players, like Comey and Brennan, in the fake Russian collusion coup attempt, had been working in the Executive Branch far longer. After almost four years now of the Deep State permanent bureaucracy showing their hand, in their open and flagrant attempt to remove their Constitutionally elected boss, I would much rather that power be placed in the hands of an impeachable, term limited, President.

Getting back to my original point - this whole thing means that it would be very hard to successfully prosecute a former President for what would have been crimes if committed by anyone else. For one thing, any conviction, and maybe even the charges, would likely end up in the Supreme Court. I think that the better approach is to go as high as they can, maybe even into the WH, but certainly to the tops of departments and agencies, and put the fear of the almighty into the lower levels of the Executive Branch, and the successors in those high positions. Obama won’t be able to protect them, since he no longer has the Executive power of the government at his command. This will (hopefully) always be the case in the future too for future Presidents. And if the millions in the permanent bureaucracy fear incarceration and penury enough from the next administration, I think that they will be more willing to stand up to the current one.

Breezy said...

I don't recall who said this about the whole fiasco - basically, paraphrasing, something to the effect that ruining the whole "peaceful transfer of power" that the USA is known for has now been broken, and that is from here on Obama's real legacy.

wendybar said...

I voted for Trump, and am proud of it. I will happily vote for him again. He is draining the swamp whether people realize it or not...so I THANK GOD everyday that Hillary lost, so that Obama's corruption finally got exposed. I only wish I could see CNN filming Barry Soetaro being awaken at 4 am, and taken by swat teams into custody like they did to Roger Stone who compared to what the Obama administration did, looks like a Saint.


Just imagine if Hillary actually won. Do you really think we would be better off???

Gk1 said...

This continues a 3 year pattern where each new revealing of redacted documents always make the FBI & Obama administration look worse and shabbier. It never manages to make russian collusion plausible or even worthy of investigating. The Obama administration was spying on a rival campaign and got caught. What will be done about that?

Mike (MJB Wolf) said...

I’m revisiting my comment on commenting, which was only a feeling anyway and not a hypothesis. Early today my phone presented this blog differently. Instead of a normal sans serif font, Blogger presented this site in Times New Roman font and formatted the page in a way I’ve only seen here before when I select the “click for more” link. Further, that same strange format extended to the comments section, which contrary to usual took me to the bottom of the page (like on my laptop) instead of the top as my phone tends to. And the original post was there where I typically find only comments.

Now I realize that both posts I commented on early (between 6-7 PST) in that weird format disappeared. Seems unlikely that was did to moderation. The site is normal again. Althouse let my post go up after a normal delay. Blogger ate my earlier wittier fare. Oh well. Glad the site works again. I regret aspersions my recent moderation-related comment may have cast the hostess’s way.

Dave Begley said...

Marco Rubio made a great comment on this Rice email. The Rhodes Scholar Susan Rice mailed the email AFTER Trump was already President. Hence, it was the Trump's Administration's email and property.

Rice will rat out Comey. Comey will pin it on Barack. Rice and Comey are both going to jail. Brennan will flee to Cuba. Political exile, don't you know.

Original Mike said...

@Mike - the format changed for me too on my iPad. Lasted about 15 minutes or so, then was normal again.

Mary Beth said...

Have Republicans stopped pouncing and started seizing now?

Yancey Ward said...

That was a glitch in the Matrix.

Mr Wibble said...

Maybe, but indicting a former President would be a big problem. Needless to say, it would be horrible precedent, and future Administrations, and esp Dem Administrations, would consider doing so as a matter of course. Banana republic politics at is worst.

Good. If that is the case then far better to get it out in the open and deal with the consequences, which would likely be the breakup of the US, rather than let things slide.

Original Mike said...

I agree with Bruce. Prosecute Comey, Brennan, et al and future underlings with think twice.

Don't prosecute and this will never end.

Amadeus 48 said...

"By the book"

Yeah, and the book was Moby Dick, with the part of the white whale played by General Flynn.

Who played Ahab? Comey? Brennan? Obama? Mueller? Strzok? McCabe? Sullivan? Well, they all fit into the crew of the Pequod somewhere, and the crew went down with the ship. And remember Moby Dick is last seen diving to the depths, with dragging Ahab with him tangled in the harpoon lines.

“All that most maddens and torments, all that stirs up the lees of things; all truth with malice in it; all that cracks the sinews and cakes the brain; all the subtle demonisms of life and thought; all evil, to crazy Ahab, were visibly personified and made practically assailable in Moby Dick.”

Call Sydney Powell Ishmael.

Temujin said...

I know that on the last day of any of my jobs, I always went back to make notes about crucial meetings that took place two weeks prior, and made sure I noted- TO MYSELF no less- that the things we talked about were going to be done By The Book. I made these notes to myself. And I made these notes on my last day- no...my last hour at work.

Just in case anyone was wondering if we did things By The Book. There it would be. "As you can see here, it says they did this all by the book. I guess we can wrap this up."

Susan Rice has been a part of a boatload of bullshit from the Obama Administration. I know they don't teach that at Stanford.

Temujin said...

Note to Mary Beth (the commenter):

Yes, we've started seizing instead of pouncing. The pouncing seemed to be taking it's toll on the knees of a number of people. So THEY sent out a memo telling us to cease pouncing and commence seizing. Did you not get the memo?

Paco Wové said...

It seems to me that, if you suspected an incoming government official of being a potential security problem, the "by the book" thing to to would be to tell the incoming President "hey, we think this guy is a potential security problem".

Jamie said...

You've got your lower-body days and your upper-body days. Core days - those must be when we cling to things?

Bruce Hayden said...

“ Good. If that is the case then far better to get it out in the open and deal with the consequences, which would likely be the breakup of the US, rather than let things slide.”

I am in the front of the line with prosecuting Clapper, Brennan, Comey, McCabe, Strzok, etc. I think that all of them need to be prosecuted, jailed, and stripped of their pensions. If the DNI, CIA Dir, FBI Dir and DD get prosecuted, as well as obvious underlings like Strzok, fewer top officials are going to be tempted to take the law into their hands, and use it for their own partisan reasons, and fewer underlings are going to follow their lead.

But prosecuting Obama and Biden is, I think, likely to end up in the Supreme Court having to decide complex Constitutional issues that maybe will go the wrong way. We know, from former voting patterns, that Obama is likely to automatically garner four votes. They just need one more, and the precedent would seemingly possibly be that Presidents are literally above the law. All that they would need was one wish washy Justice to try to split the baby (yes, I mean CJ Roberts).

Amadeus 48 said...

So now Susan Rice says the "White House Counsel" told her to write that memo. Who was that? I can't remember. One of those identikit Obama legal beagles, no doubt.

If that's the case, that means that everything was done irregularly and without regard to precedent.

You know, for almost 250 years we had the tradition of peaceful transfer of---D'oh! I forgot. The civil war. Those darn Democrats!

Andrew said...

If Al Capone had just kept a diary to memorialize his telling his tax accountant to file his taxes above board and by the books.

Howard said...

The ability to write ass covering memos by high ranking administration officials is a standard job requirement. Some of you people really need to grow up and put on your big-boy pants. Realpolitik.

narciso said...

neil eggleston who was a staff aide in the Clinton era,

Andrew said...

Howard
Assassinations and lynchings are also Realpolitik.

Andrew said...

If Al Capone had just kept a diary to memorialize his telling his tax accountant to file his taxes above board and by the books.

narciso said...

the same person who made up the 'only a video' for the rendition and murder of an American ambassador,

Leland said...

The ability to write ass covering memos by high ranking administration officials is a standard job requirement.

So you are saying there was a cover up? You know, "The cover up, more than the initial wrongdoing, is what is most likely to bring you down." - Madeleine Albright

Yancey Ward said...

"So now Susan Rice says the "White House Counsel" told her to write that memo. Who was that? I can't remember. One of those identikit Obama legal beagles, no doubt."

Then that pretty much seals the case- the lawyers knew what was being done was illegal and improper.

I'm Full of Soup said...

It's not the crime it's the coverup. I heard that somewhere.

Rick said...

MikeR said...
Just the kind of things that loyal underlings take care of so the boss doesn't need to know about it.


Unless you think the Rice memo is a lie Obama did know about it - as did Biden.


MayBee said...
How long did they intend to keep intelligence from them? What intelligence? And why?


Long enough to be impeached, convicted, and out of office?

Danno said...
To Comey, two phone calls with Kislyak was frequent? Sure.


The Dems TDS drove this insanity. The continuously misinterpreted ordinary occurrences as alarming because they convinced themselves only something nefarious could prevent their continued consolidation of political power.

Obama and his administration were comically inept.

Inga said...
Nothingburger...again.


Using law enforcement to investigate your political opponents is nothing reports house organ.

Somehow left wingers have come to believe Pravda had it right and should be emulated.

Howard said...

Bring it on Andrew, you and your army of chicken hawk obese opioid addicted wannabes. Money talks bulshit walks. To the Moon, Alice

Jim at said...

Nothingburger...again.

If the roles were reversed, would you still think it was a nothingburger?

Yeah. That's what I thought.

Hopefully the next Democrat to inhabit the White House will suffer the same fate. In spades.

Amadeus 48 said...

But if your skill set includes writing ass-covering memos, shouldn't you write good ones?

Anyone looking at that Rice memo would immediately think, that is not what happened. I don't know what did happen, but it wasn't that.

A good memo would have presented a thoughtful rendition and analysis of the applicable considerations (no matter how false to the actual discussions) and a conclusion that followed from that analysis. Now, THAT would be a good CYA memo.

Rice might as well have put a big "Bullshit!" stamp on this thing, or drawn a smoking gun on it.

By the way, one time in reviewing discovery document production in a lawsuit, we found a document with a smoking pistol doodle on it. Believe me, we looked at that thing every way we could think of before turning it over to the other side. It was harmless. Sometimes a doodle is just a doodle.

Charlie Eklund said...

I liked the temporary alternate format’s font, anyway. It would be interesting to see how the option to Reply would change the flow of the comments, if such a daring experiment would ever be tried.

Original Mike said...

"I liked the temporary alternate format’s font, anyway."

I didn't. There was empty white space up the wazoo on my iPad.

gadfly said...

From Paul Pillar at Responsible Statecraft:

Seemingly forgotten in the attempt to make Flynn a prop in accusations of misconduct in the previous administration was how the early Trump White House — and specifically Chief of Staff Reince Priebus and White House Counsel Donald McGahn — determined that Flynn’s repeated lying about his conversations with the Russian ambassador, both to the FBI and to Vice President Pence, meant he had to go. Also forgotten is not only that Flynn admitted in court that he was guilty of that lying but that his admission was part of a plea deal in a case in which he could have been hit with additional charges of concealing paid work he had done for the Turkish government. But those desperate to construct a partisan attack will take whatever prop they can get.

Banjo said...

"How about Progressive Democrats are rotten to the core, and spied on the Trump administration, and set up General Flynn??? Politico sucks."

Hasn't it always?

Bunkypotatohead said...

Way back when Trump first interviewed Comey, he asked about his loyalties.
It's as if he already suspected something like this was going on.

StephenFearby said...

Yancey Ward said...
"So now Susan Rice says the "White House Counsel" told her to write that memo. Who was that? I can't remember. One of those identikit Obama legal beagles, no doubt."


'...Erin Pelton, a spokeswoman for Rice, told Fox News on Wednesday that Rice drafted the memo at the advice of Neil Eggleston, who was the White House counsel.

This echoed what Rice's attorney said in a 2018 letter to GOP senators.

“Given the importance and sensitivity of the subject matter, and upon the advice of the White House Counsel’s Office, Ambassador Rice created a permanent record of the discussion,” Rice's attorney, Kathryn Ruemmler, wrote. “Ambassador Rice memorialized the discussion on January 20, because that was the first opportunity she had to do so, given the particularly intense responsibilities of the National Security Advisor during the remaining days of the administration and transition.”

Still, the memo, which was mostly unredacted prior to Tuesday, has raised questions about why Rice would send herself the note in the final hours of Obama's presidency.'

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/white-house-counsel-advised-susan-rice-to-write-memo-on-oval-office-discussion-about-michael-flynn

William50 said...

If Obama really was concerned that everything be "by the book", why didn't he write the email/memo and send it to everyone who attended the meeting? Why did the white house counsel have Rice of all people write it, and to herself?

gadfly said...

Blogger William50 said...
If Obama really was concerned that everything be "by the book", why didn't he write the email/memo and send it to everyone who attended the meeting? Why did the white house counsel have Rice of all people write it, and to herself?

Now that is a conspiracy theory extrordinaire! Where, other than from the fertile mind of 50$Bill, can we find the right answer to such a lame question. A better question would be: What did our Stable Genius hope to accomplish by unclassifying the entirely innoculous Rice email now?

Roy Lofquist said...

Blogger Howard said...
A real smoking gub
5/20/20, 8:06 AM
------
Coffee all over the keyboard!

Drago said...

gadfly: "Now that is a conspiracy theory extrordinaire!"

LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL

gadfly has no idea that Rice's team publicly announced that it was the White House counsel under obama that directed her to write that email.

He/she/xe literally has no idea that happened in the last 18 hours and so he/she/xe calls it a conspiracy theory!

Hey, remember when gadfly called the claims Hillary had paid for the hoax dossier a conspiracy theory?

Good times, good times.

Terry Ott said...

So Kathryn Ruemmler is explaining these events for her client. That Kathryn Ruemmler? Yes indeed. Sidney Powell says about her in The Observer in 2014:

"As we reported previously, not only was Ms. Ruemmler in the middle of the IRS email scandal, the Benghazi cover-up, and the most vigorous “protector” of a president while increasing government secrecy and violating the rights of others, the Post places her squarely in the middle of the cover-up of the Cartagena sex scandal for which the Secret Service and the military took the sole blame for having several prostitutes spend the night before the President arrived. Finally, the Post, which has sung her praises for the White House, challenges Ms. Ruemmler’s role and that of Mr. Obama’s friends and donors.

"A dozen Secret Service Agents and military personnel were fired over “Hookergate.” But a young member of the advance team from the White House itself, Mr. Jonathan Dach, was protected by Ms. Ruemmler’s “investigation.” Just so happens that his father, Leslie Dach, was a significant donor to Mr. Obama’s re-election campaign, and a key figure in Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” wellness campaign.

"Ironically, the younger Mr. Dach, who registered the “guest” in his room in Cartagena, was given a job as in the State Department as a “Policy Advisor” on “Global Women’s Issues.” Obviously, Mr. Dach was just doing research for his new job as an advocate for women when he shared his hotel room with a prostitute while in Colombia for the president on his taxpayer-funded field trip from Yale Law School. While Secret Service Agents were fired, the elder Mr. Dach was also given a plum job by Mr. Obama. Leslie Dach now works for Health and Human Services, helping with Obamacare.”

Okay then Ms Ruemmler, (known as Obama’s fixer), that settles it re: Susan Rice. It’s just fine now. We should have known better than to ask… sorry.

mtrobertslaw said...

Obama may escape being indicted, but will he escape being remembered as "an un-indicted co-conspirator?"

Kirk Parker said...

Bruce @ 12:48pm,

Not good enough--we need to follow the old British Admiralty here hang a few pour encourager les autres.

Except Strzok--we need to bring back blowing from a gun for him.