President Trump supporters like myself are seizing upon newly declassified portions of an email written by former national security adviser Susan Rice as evidence that an investigation into her incoming successor, Michael Flynn, was politically motivated, while Rice says the same email proves the previous administration’s concerns were legitimate.
I love just watching the left eating themselves to save their king B-Rock Obama who’s the main evildoer in this entire thing… Here once again brilliantly put together by the great “Dan Bongino” below as more comes out about the Susan Rice lies, and EMAILS. Again this all leads to OBAMA!
Susan Rice sent herself an email on the day of Trump’s inauguration that recounts a Jan. 5, 2017, Oval Office meeting she attended along with President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, FBI Director James Comey and Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates. She described the meeting as a “follow-on conversation” after a briefing by intelligence community leaders on Russian interference in the 2016 election.
Read Rice’s full email here:
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“President Obama began the conversation by stressing his continued commitment to ensuring that every aspect of this issue is handled by the Intelligence and law enforcement communities ‘by the book,'” Rice wrote. “The President stressed that he is not asking about, intimating or instructing anything from a law enforcement perspective. He reiterated that our law enforcement team needs to proceed as it normally would by the book.”
Rice said Obama wanted to be sure there was no reason they couldn’t “share any information fully as it related to Russia” with the new administration.
Those portions of the email were made public in 2018. In the previously redacted portion of the email (see below) that acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell declassified this week, Comey shared his “concerns” about Flynn’s conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak.
Director Comey affirmed that he is proceeding “by the book” as it relates to law enforcement. 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.”
In the concluding paragraph, which was not previously redacted, Obama asked Comey to update him “if anything changes in the next few weeks that should affect how we share classified information with the incoming team,” and Comey said he would.
Flynn later pleaded guilty to lying to FBI investigators about his contacts with Kislyak. He later attempted to withdraw his guilty plea, saying he was trapped into making false statements. The Justice Department under Attorney General William Barr has asked to dismiss the case, arguing the FBI did not have “a legitimate investigative basis” to interview Flynn in the first place.
After the inauguration, as other Trump campaign officials, including former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, were accused of lying about or failing to disclose contacts with Russian officials and information came out about the Russian government’s campaign to sway the election in Trump’s favor, calls mounted for an investigation into potential collusion between Trump’s team and the Kremlin.
Those calls culminated in Sessions’ recusal and the appointment of former FBI Director Robert Mueller as special counsel.
The special counsel’s report said the investigation “did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.”
But Mueller did conclude that Russia “carried out a social media campaign,” which “favored” Trump and “disparaged” Hillary Clinton, and stole emails from the Democratic nominee’s campaign.
“The investigation also identified numerous links between the Russian government and the Trump Campaign,” the report said. And it “established that the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency and worked to secure that outcome, and that the Campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts.”
From the beginning, Trump derided the investigation into potential collusion between his campaign and Russian election interference as a “hoax” and has accused Obama of “spying” on him. He has recently renewed his accusation that Obama and members of his administration acted illegally in what he labels “Obamagate,” though he has been unable to say what specific crime he believes his predecessor committed.
In a tweet last week, Trump called on Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., to call Obama to testify about “the biggest political crime and scandal in the history of the USA, by FAR.”
If I were a Senator or Congressman, the first person I would call to testify about the biggest political crime and scandal in the history of the USA, by FAR, is former President Obama. He knew EVERYTHING. Do it @LindseyGrahamSC, just do it. No more Mr. Nice Guy. No more talk!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 14, 2020
Graham told Politico he had no intention of calling Obama to testify. But on Monday he announced he is seeking subpoena power to obtain testimony and documents from Obama administration officials related to origins of the Russia investigation.
Trump and his supporters argue that Rice’s email shows the former president and Vice President Joe Biden, the presumptive 2020 Democratic presidential nominee, orchestrated a campaign to undermine the Trump White House before it even got started.
Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., said the email reflected a “shameful” effort by the Obama administration to “sabotage” the incoming Trump administration.
“We didn’t witness what America has become so famous for: a peaceful, cooperative, well-wishing transition of power,” Johnson told Fox News. “Instead, we saw a corruption of that transition.”
The senator did not clearly explain how the email was evidence of that alleged corruption, but he implied there was something suspicious about the fact that it was classified. And based on the “odd” timing of the email, coming 15 days after the meeting, that “somebody in the White House counsel’s office came to her and asked her to write that e-mail.”
Johnson, who chairs the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, called for further investigation.
A spokeswoman for Rice said in a statement Tuesday that the former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations “welcomes the release of the entirety of her Jan. 20, 2017 email, which confirms what she and others have indicated all along: that the Obama Administration had legitimate counter-intelligence concerns about National Security Advisor-designate Flynn’s communications with Russia.”
The email made clear “that no discussion of law enforcement matters of investigations took place, despite dishonest accusations to the contrary,” the statement said. It also said the email shows that the concerns about Flynn’s Russian contacts did not change the way Rice briefed her incoming successor.
“In fact, Ambassador Rice briefed Michael Flynn for over 12 hours, on four separate occasions and led the National Security Council in preparing and delivering to him over 100 separate briefing memos. Ambassador Rice did not alter the way she briefed Michael Flynn on Russia as a result of Director Comey’s response,” the statement said.
Rice called on Grenell to release the unredacted transcripts of Flynn’s conversations with Kislyak so the American people “can judge for themselves Michael Flynn’s conduct.”