The Morning Briefing: Comey Don't Know Nothin' About No Spyin' and Much, Much More
Good Friday morning.
Here is what's on the president's agenda today:
- The president receives his intelligence briefing
- President Trump delivers remarks on United States 5G deployment
- The president meets with the Fraternal Order of Police Executive Board
Comey: what is this "spying" Barr speaks of?
Not the best and the brightest. Fired FBI Director and social media #resistence influencer James Comey is confused about what Attorney General William Barr meant when he said the intelligence community was "spying" on the Trump campaign.
"With respect to Barr's comments, I really don't know what he's talking about when he's talking about spying on the campaign, so I can't really react substantively," Comey said at the Hewlett Foundation's Verify cybersecurity conference.
"When I hear that kind of language used, it's concerning because the FBI and Department of Justice conduct court ordered electronic surveillance, I have never thought of that as spying," he added. "If the attorney general has come to the belief that that should be called spying, wow, that's going to require a whole lot of conversations inside the Department of Justice."
Comey pretends the court actually ordered the spooks to spy or surveil the Trump campaign, leaving out the part where the spooks tricked the court into permitting them to use the massive leviathan of government resources to snoop on a political adversary. The court didn't just call up some folks at the intel agencies and say "I order you to surveil the Trump campaign!" I'm sure in time we will learn more about the spying Comey knows nothing about.
Creepy porn lawyer accused of an assortment of horrific crimes
CNN-MSNBC show pony Michael Avenatti, also known as the creepy porn lawyer, was indicted on 36 federal charges on Thursday. This former media darling appeared on TV 254 times, according to the Media Research Center.
Avenatti appeared most frequently on CNN, which welcomed him an astonishing 121 times. MSNBC also had a high tally, having him on 108 times. He made 24 appearances on broadcast news; 12 on ABC, seven on CBS and five on NBC.
Avenatti appeared on Fox News twice.
He could face a total of 335 years in prison if convicted of all the charges. One of the most despicable claims against Avenatti alleges he stole millions of dollars from of his mentally ill, paraplegic client.
The feds also seized Avenatti's jet yesterday. Boo-hoo.
Obama Admin White House Counsel Greg Craig indicted
A federal grand jury indicted Greg Craig, a former Obama administration White House counsel.
Gregory Craig, the former Obama White House counsel, was charged by a federal grand jury on Thursday with making false statements and concealing material information about his work in private practice lobbying on behalf of the Ukrainian government.
The two-count indictment, filed in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., says that Craig, 74, purposefully and repeatedly misled federal investigators about his need to register as a foreign lobbyist, including in 2017 when interviewed by prosecutors for special counsel Robert Mueller.
Did he get a midnight, no-knock raid with stormtroopers yet?
At issue for Craig is work he did starting in 2012, after his White House stint, at the Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom law firm preparing a report concerning Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych’s jailing of one of his political opponents, former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.
The report was meant to be used by President Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort, who had been lobbying for Yanukovych at the time, to defend the former president.
The DOJ had asked the Southern District Court of New York to take up the case (maybe they are too busy with Manafort stuff?), but they turned it down. The case was then handed off to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Washington.
Julian Assange, founder of WikiLeaks was arrested yesterday at the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where he has lived for seven years. Assange was charged with helping Chelsea Manning hack into the Department of Defense computers.
More than a year ago, a federal grand jury indicted Assange for one count of conspiracy to commit computer intrusion.
The case had been kept under seal until Thursday, and its unveiling marks a new chapter in the US government's high-profile efforts to discourage classified document leaks and to pursue Assange.
It's not clear whether his work with WikiLeaks will eventually be brought up against him.
Barry Pollack, an attorney for Assange, says the allegations against Assange in the indictment made public "boil down to encouraging a source to provide him information and taking efforts to protect the identify of that source. Journalists around the world should be deeply troubled by these unprecedented criminal charges."
Assange was found guilty Thursday in London of breaking his bail conditions and ordered to appear on May 2 for an extradition hearing. Until then, he will remain in custody.
At first, the left liked Assange because he was dumping all kinds of American classified and secret information into the public. But...when he started releasing other information, like John Podesta's emails, they decided he was a bad man because principles and all that.
Jew-hating caucus round-up
Historical picture of the day:
And that's all I've got, now go beat back the angry mob!