Timeline: Leak targets Flynn

Another important criminal leak was given to Ellen Nakashima and Greg Miller of the Washington Post. Their article, headlined “FBI reviewed Flynn’s calls with Russian ambassador but found nothing illicit,” was intended to make Flynn feel safe and put him at ease about the FBI stance on those calls the day before they planned to ambush him in an interview. The article was used to publicize false information when it said, “Although Flynn’s contacts with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak were listened to, Flynn himself is not the active target of an investigation, U.S. officials said.” In fact, emails prior to this date confirm Flynn was their prime target. This article was later cited by McCabe as the reason why they were justified in concealing from Flynn the real purpose of their interview. Flynn later asked McCabe if he knew how all the information about his phone calls had been made public and whether it had been leaked. Any potential response from McCabe to Flynn has been redacted from his own notes about the conversation.

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Schakowsky statement on Donald Trump’s inauguration

“I have decided to join the growing group of my colleagues who will not attend the Inauguration in protest of a President who used bigotry, fear, and lies to win an election that was tainted by foreign interference and voter suppression — and who intends to betray the interests of the ordinary working people who put him in office.

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Timeline: Use the Logan Act against Flynn

The next part of the strategy was the explosive leak to David Ignatius of the Washington Post to legitimize the use against Flynn of the Logan Act, a likely unconstitutional 1799 law prohibiting private individuals, not public incoming national security advisors, from discussing foreign policy with foreign governments. Ignatius accepted the leak from the Obama official. He wrote that Flynn had called Kislyak. “What did Flynn say, and did it undercut the U.S. sanctions? The Logan Act (though never enforced) bars U.S. citizens from correspondence intending to influence a foreign government about ‘disputes’ with the United States. Was its spirit violated?” Flynn’s routine and appropriate phone call became fodder for a developing grand conspiracy theory of Russia collusion. In discussions with investigators, both DOJ’s Mary McCord and Comey conspicuously cite this Ignatius column as somehow meaningful in the approach they would take with Flynn. “Nothing, to my mind, happens until the 13th of January, when David Ignatius publishes a column that contains a reference to communication Michael Flynn had with the Russians. That was on the 13th of January,” Comey said of the column that ran online on January 12. In fact, quite a bit had happened at the FBI prior to that leak, with much conversation about how to utilize the Logan Act against Flynn. And the leak-fueled Ignatius column would later be used by FBI officials to justify an illegal ambush interview of Flynn in the White House.

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Trump ‘compromising’ claims: How and why did we get here?

[…] The President-elect of the United States is vulnerable to blackmail. Imagine if that’s true. There are already senior Republicans like John McCain talking about hearings. There are Democrats, not just wishful thinking on their part, talking about impeachment […]

Paul Wood, BBC
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Schumer warns Trump: Intel officials ‘have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you’

The new leader of Democrats in the Senate says Donald Trump is being “really dumb” for picking a fight with intelligence officials, suggesting they have ways to strike back, after the president-elect speculated Tuesday that his “so-called” briefing about Russian cyberattacks had been delayed in order to build a case.

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