1/ James Comey called Trump "morally unfit to be president" and likened "the loyalty oaths" to a mob boss at "the dominant center of everything" who is doing "tremendous damage" to institutional and cultural norms. In his Sunday interview with George Stephanopoulos, Comey said that it is "possible, but I don't know" if Russia has compromising information on Trump. (ABC News / Reuters)
That tweet would appear to directly contradict the report from the justice department on former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe’s “lack of candor.” Specifically the reference to who had knowledge of McCabe’s background interview with the WSJ and what Comey told Senator Chuck Grassley about authorizing interviews with the press. The DOJ report asserts that McCabe had lied and Comey had told the truth.
The President cannot have it both ways. He’s grasping for straws.
In a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in May, shortly before Comey’s firing, Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa) probed Comey about leaks to the press:
GRASSLEY: Director Comey, have you ever been an anonymous source in news reports about matters relating to the Trump investigation or the [Hillary] Clinton investigation?
GRASSLEY: Question two, relatively related: Have you ever authorized someone else at the FBI to be an anonymous source in news reports about the Trump investigation or the Clinton investigation?
Comey’s responses appear to be at least somewhat inconsistent with a statement that former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe issued last month after his own firing, which the Justice Department attributed in part to “an unauthorized disclosure to the news media.”
As things develop by the minute, particularly with the news that Sean Hannity was part of Cohen’s legal representation - more revelations have happened during the court proceeding. This could definitely present problems for Hannity and his Murdoch bosses (more likely the more liberal sons)
Oh and a new lawyer for Trump - Joanna Hendon to defend Cohen on what may be properly reviewed or not.
"But Cohen filed suit in federal court last week to try to block that review from happening — arguing that he himself should be able to review the seized material first and hand over only what he deems not to be privileged. Judge Kimba Wood of the Southern District of New York has been assigned the case.
And President Trump has hired a new attorney, Joanna Hendon, to back up Cohen. On Sunday, Hendon submitted a filing arguing that a judge should block the filter team process entirely and should instead hand over copies of everything seized to Cohen for his review.
SDNY, however, has said that they are adhering to “common practice” for matters like this, and following “rigorous protocols” by using a filter team. They say they found probable cause that the places they searched and the devices they’ve seized contained evidence of potentially criminal conduct by Cohen himself — something that attorney-client privilege would not protect. They’ve fired back at Trump, too, writing Monday morning that “the President’s proposal” to block their review “would set a dangerous precedent.”
This from VOX article - which is a great running review of the legal proceedings.
More on the proceeding
"In what could be a sign of potential tension between Cohen and the president, Hendon argued that even if Cohen improperly shared confidential information from Trump with others, that would not necessarily waive the president’s privilege.
“Privileged information that a lawyer intentionally or negligently shares with a third party outside the privileged relationship without the client’s consent remains privileged because a lawyer cannot, without proper authorization, waive his client’s privilege,” Hendon wrote."
Oh and file under #InquiringMinds…Judge Kimba Woods was also known as he Love Judge when she was named in a lawsuit from a dispute between a rich Wall Streeter. Woods had briefly worked as a Playboy casino worker.
Just when ya think you’ve heard it all. Now we have a link between “The Fixer” (Cohen), Trump and Hannity. Hannity says he never received a bill or invoice from Cohen and only had verbal advice on some real estate matters, really! Jezzz this guy (Cohen) has a law license I guess and is hardly a practicing lawyer in NYC and Hannity consults him on real estate matters, give me a break.
What else is going to come out about this group? Your thoughts appreciated. Will Hannity survive on Fox?
I’ve got to ask: Why hasn’t Fox News fired Hannity?
There’s some good analysis in the above article about the many ways in which Hannity’s response is highly suspect. However, other than making some oblique references to the need for disclosures, the author failed to plainly lay out the biggest problem with Hannity’s story: Hannity clearly admits he was receiving free legal consultations from Cohen (or he might have paid “10 bucks” – so let’s go ahead and call it “free”). During his interviews with Cohen, Hannity repeatedly flatters and praises Cohen, not once disclosing that he was receiving professional services from the attorney at no cost. So Cohen was essentially secretly paying Hannity in the form of free services, thus ensuring that Hannity would enhance his reputation as a lawyer and help defend him and Trump in the public arena against the allegations they face.
Let’s use an analogy: Suppose a building contractor who is under investigation for fraud and safety violations remodels Hannity’s home for free. Hannity then interviews the contractor on his show, never revealing the free services the contractor has provided him. Not surprisingly, Hannity, praises the contractor’s skills and defends him vigorously against any charges of wrongdoing. This is precisely analogous to what played out between Hannity and Cohen.
Any reputable news organization would have fired Hannity in a New York second upon discovering that he had conducted interviews based on an undisclosed, fraudulent arrangement. So much for Fox News claiming it is fair and balanced. Shame on Hannity and shame on Fox.
Wait there’s more…planned cyber attack from the Russians on Britain and US, in retaliation for sanctions, removal of embassy workers. etc. Russia is stepping up and retaliating.
"The U.S. and British governments on Monday accused Russia of conducting a massive campaign to compromise computer routers and firewalls around the world — from home offices to Internet providers — for espionage and possibly sabotage purposes.
The unusual public warning from the White House, U.S. agencies and Britain’s National Cyber Security Center follows a years-long effort to monitor the threat. The targets number in the millions, officials say, and include “primarily government and private-sector organizations, critical infrastructure providers, and the Internet service providers (ISPs) supporting these sectors.”
It was the two countries’ first such joint alert.
“We have high confidence that Russia has carried out a coordinated campaign to compromise … routers, residential and business — the things you and I have in our home,” said Rob Joyce, the White House cybersecurity coordinator."
Trump also charged that the only reason Comey reopened the Clinton email investigation in the final days of the 2016 election was because he wanted a job in her administration.
While certainly not the most exciting news of the day (uhh Sean Hannity!!), this just strikes me as further evidence that we are not dealing with an intelligent individual here. Only in his warped mind does Comey reopening the investigation, publicly, into Clinton = Clinton giving Comey a job when she won.
If anything, it’s helpful to Trump (as Kellyanne Conway so helpfully pointed out on TV) that this happened, thereby swinging the election to him. An argument could be made instead that it is why Trump kept him on as FBI Director for as long as he did, right? I don’t know if it’s true, but it makes more sense to me than Comey did it to help Clinton in the election.
This bombshell JUST happened today, within the last few hours, so let’s give them about 24 hours to respond. It is the Murdoch son’s James and Lachlan who have been influential in getting the others fired - see Ailes, O’Reilly, but the elder Rupert Murdoch carries water for Trump, apparently they talk every day.
It was the younger two Murdoch’s who got Hannity to stop discussing Seth Rich (A Hillary campaign worker) as having been conspiratorially killed.
And as far as Hannity refuting that Cohen was his lawyer, we’re already past that because Cohen’s lawyer did establish that Hannity was indeed a client. You wonder what kinds of documents are in that treasure trove of raided materials.
To be considered someone’s lawyer, some pundits were saying all that is required is if legal advice is given, then that is enough. No money has to exchange hands. You wonder if T was paying Hannity, as his mouth piece on the (state run) Fox Network or perhaps Hannity needed some atty-client cover with Cohen. I do not know.
But we do know that Hannity’s listening audience is the same as T’s. They are low information news gatherers. You wonder if Fox will take a radical step and publicly reprimand Hannity and/or fire him. Fox did nothing about Ingraham’s words about the repulsive tweet she made about a Parkland School survivor, David Hogg and his college admissions.
But I agree Hannity should get consequences…real ones, if he failed to disclose this relationship.
Yes, Zinke is being called on his travel costs, and what is deemed work or giving back to a big donor.
"Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke failed to disclose relevant information to ethics officials when he traveled to Las Vegas to speak to the Golden Knights hockey team last year, the department’s watchdog reported Monday — including the fact that one of his biggest campaign donors owned the team.
The report by Interior’s inspector general also raised questions about whether taxpayers should have been on the hook for a $12,000 charter flight that Zinke took after the speech from Las Vegas to his home state of Montana. Because Zinke’s speech did not even mention the Interior Department, the IG said it’s unlikely ethics officials would have OK’d it as official business.
“If ethics officials had known Zinke’s speech would have no nexus to the DOI, they likely would not have approved this as an official event, thus eliminating the need for a chartered flight,” the report said. “Moreover, had ethics officials been made aware that the Golden Knights’ owner had been a donor to Zinke’s congressional campaign, it might have prompted further review and discussion.”
I just heard this from my wife. The guy only has 3 clients, Brodie, Hannity, & Trump. Now I wonder how the “taint team” is going to distinguish amongst those three individuals because there has to be a connection, isn’t there? Is Hannity possibly in the President’s pocket because he can be his mouthpiece? Or maybe vice-versa, Hannity is a Presidential Consultant of sorts? Too weird…can’t wait to hear about all the things that Essential Consultants was involved in.
You couldn’t even make this up if you tried. It’s like a really bad movie, but you’re in the theatre and you don’t want to annoy your fellow movie goers by getting up and leaving, so you’re stuck. The whole Twitter thing would be fine if he could write coherent sentences and didn’t sound like an angry 12 year old, but as it is, how long can we, must we, as a country put up with an idiot running the country? He’s completely turned me off on social media because I see now, it does more harm than good. A 2,000% increase in Russia bot action proves that you’d better not give too much thought to the nonsense that people post and some folks inability to distinguish authentic “fake news” (or bots) from the Real News
which thankfully seems to still be largely intact.
Question How much blatant lying is acceptable in the Fox world, or Trump world? Obviously, they make up their own facts and coordinate their stories. Goal is to consolidate their power base.
And just maybe the SDNY will put some legal screws into this farse.
“These views align with Trump’s, so it’s likely that Hannity would have espoused them anyway. We now know, however, that his coverage represents a huge conflict of interest. By concealing—not just by omission, but by commission, in requesting that his involvement be kept anonymous—his relationship with Cohen when he made these comments, Hannity misled his viewers and listeners, whether that relationship was with an attorney or simply with a friend.”
'Such behavior would not pass muster at any other major news organization. Fox representatives did not respond to questions about whether the company was aware of Hannity’s relationship with Cohen, whether he should have been allowed to cover the raid without disclosing it, or whether he would be allowed to cover it going forward."
No surprise here. This is Fox News’ entire statement on the matter:
While Fox News was unaware of Sean Hannity’s informal relationship with Michael Cohen and was surprised by the announcement in court yesterday, we have reviewed the matter and spoken to Sean and he continues to have our full support.
I guess they could have appended: “Case closed. We’re not going to look into this at all. Go away and don’t bother us. In fact, go watch Hannity and then go buy products from his sponsors.”
At this point I’m not surprised by Fox News response. I will look closer at who advertises on Fox News, specifically Hannity’s show and make appropriate personal decisions. I don’t watch Hannity, I don’t watch Fox News, I suspect the only thing I can do is not buy from the advertisers who support them.
@Keaton_James - didn’t realize you had just posted this too…but yeah
errrrr, ummmm Fox News does not care about Hannity’s ties to Cohen.
"Today, Fox News finally gave its position on the problem. To wit, there is no problem. According to an official statement, “While FOX News was unaware of Sean Hannity’s informal relationship with Michael Cohen and was surprised by the announcement in court yesterday, we have reviewed the matter and spoken to Sean and he continues to have our full support.”
“The network has not provided any details about the Cohen-Hannity relationship, and apparently sees no need to do so. “Hannity journalism ethics problem” is a category error. Fox News viewers should probably assume that every talking head on the network has deep, undisclosed conflicts of interest.”
The NYT Mag did a long cover piece on Hannity several weeks ago I don’t think even he considers himself a journalist, he’s a talking head personality much like Limbaugh, O’Reily and others and his viewers don’t seem to care if he has ethics. He’s made $ millions so he will continue with what makes him rich.