A heavily redacted document released by the Senate Judiciary Committee Monday reveals that the former British spy who wrote the “dirty dossier” wrote an additional anti-Trump memo based on information collected by a Clinton ally.
This revelation and others are in the unclassified version of the January 4, 2018, criminal referral memorandum written by Republican Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC), which targets dossier author Christopher Steele. The unclassified version states that someone associated with the Clintons joined forces with the Obama administration to dig up dirt on then-candidate Trump.
Grassley, chairman of the Judiciary Committee, said in a speech on the Senate floor on January 24 that he and Senator Graham had identified conflicting statements made by Steele, and that the discrepancies were “significant.”
According to the senators, the evidence suggests that either “Steele lied to the FBI about his contacts with the media (a violation of 18 USC 1001) — or the FBI misrepresented Steele’s statements.”
Grassley said that those discrepancies and contradicting statements are what led him to refer Christopher Steele to federal law-enforcement officials for criminal investigation.
Grassley also accused the FBI of using false classification claims to prevent his office from releasing these damning revelations to the public: “I have already been pushing the Department to review the classified referral memorandum to confirm the memo’s classification markings so that we can release the unclassified portions as soon as possible. But now the Department has deferred to the FBI and the FBI is falsely claiming that three of our unclassified paragraphs each contain the same, or single, classified fact,” Grassley complained.
The version of the referral released this morning has major redactions, making the full content difficult to discern. But what can be understood is damning enough: according to the referral, one of Clinton’s shady associates went through the State Department to feed Steele anti-Trump allegations gleaned from a foreign source.
In a convoluted scheme outlined in the referral, the foreign source gave the information to an unnamed associate of Hillary and Bill Clinton, who then gave the information to an unnamed official in the Obama State Department, who then gave the information to Steele. Steele wrote a report based on the information, but the redacted version of the referral does not say what Steele did with the report after that.
Published accounts in the Guardian and the Washington Post have indicated that Clinton associate Cody Shearer was in contact with Steele about anti-Trump research, and Obama State Department official Jonathan Winer was a connection between Steele and the State Department during the 2016 campaign.
Shearer, also known as “Mr. Fixer” for the Clintons, has worked with Clinton hatchet-man Sidney Blumenthal. Former Clinton adviser Dick Morris — who understands Clintonworld better than most — has an interesting theory about all of this:
What if Shearer — Hillary’s go-to guy when it came to underhanded opposition research — wrote his dossier first, making up lurid tales as he went along, and then handed it to Steele to publish under his own name?
The senators wrote to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher Wray: “It is troubling enough that the Clinton Campaign funded Mr. Steele’s work, but that these Clinton associates were contemporaneously feeding Mr. Steele allegations raises additional concerns about his credibility.”
Also: “[T]here is substantial evidence suggesting that Mr. Steele materially misled the FBI about a key aspect of his dossier efforts, one which bears on his credibility.”
From Catherine Herridge, the unclassified criminal referral sent by Graham and Grassley to the DOJ states Clinton associates were feeding information to Steele. Grassley Seeking full declassification review to have the referral fully released. https://t.co/nWjbKosR0P pic.twitter.com/BiNgxdSENQ
— Nick Short 🇺🇸 (@PoliticalShort) February 5, 2018