Wednesday Open Thread | Devin Nunes Won’t Say if He Worked With WH on Anti-FBI Memo

House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes (R-CA) on Tuesday declined to say whether he worked with the White House on the anti-FBI memo written by members of his staff, the Daily Beast reports.

His refusal came during a closed-door committee meeting, during which Rep. Mike Quigley (D-IL) asked Nunes if his staffers engaged with the White House as they wrote the memo alleging improper surveillance by the FBI during the 2016 presidential election.

That memo has created a political firestorm in recent weeks with leading Republican figures demanding the release of the memo while simultaneous deferring to the Trump administration on whether to actually release it. Democrats have accused the Nunes memo of being a political ploy designed to provide cover to Donald Trump in special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.

As the Beast reports, Nunes told Quigley, “I’m not answering” when asked point-blank about possible communications with the White House.

Nunes’ non-denial recalls a similar effort he made last year on behalf of the Trump administration. In March the House Intelligence Committee chairman held a press conference alleging former President Barack Obama’s Justice Department “unmasked” Trump officials.

According to Nunes, people related to the Trump transition team (which the House intel chairman was himself on) were swept up in “incidental surveillance” and improperly monitored by the former administration.

It was later reported Nunes received that information during a clandestine meeting with two White House officials—the day after former FBI Director James Comeys’ devastating testimony before Nunes’ committee.

According to Trump, Nunes’ press conference “somewhat vindicated” his baseless claim that Obama “wire tapped” Trump Tower in 2016. As the News Yorker’s Ryan Lizza reported last year, in the aftermath of that unsubstantiated claim, the White House put out an “all-points bulletin” to “find something” that would validate Trump’s charge.

Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC), who heads the Senate Intelligence Committee, has said “the unmasking thing was all created by Devin Nunes.”

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A Native Texan who adores baby kittens, loves horses, rodeos, pomegranates, & collect Eagles. Enjoys politics, games shows, & dancing to all types of music. Loves discussing and learning about different cultures. A Phi Theta Kappa lifetime member with a passion for Social & Civil Justice.
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101 Responses to Wednesday Open Thread | Devin Nunes Won’t Say if He Worked With WH on Anti-FBI Memo

  1. rikyrah says:

    Exclusive: Trump asked Rosenstein if he was ‘on my team’
    By Pamela Brown, Evan Perez and Laura Jarrett, CNN

    Updated 4:29 PM ET, Wed January 31, 2018

    Washington (CNN)Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein visited the White House in December seeking President Donald Trump’s help. The top Justice Department official in the Russia investigation wanted Trump’s support in fighting off document demands from House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes.

    But the President had other priorities ahead of a key appearance by Rosenstein on the Hill, according to sources familiar with the meeting. Trump wanted to know where the special counsel’s Russia investigation was heading. And he wanted to know whether Rosenstein was “on my team.”

    The episode is the latest to come to light portraying a President whose inquiries sometimes cross a line that presidents traditionally have tried to avoid when dealing with the Justice Department, for which a measure of independence is key. The exchange could raise further questions about whether Trump was seeking to interfere in the investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller, who is looking into potential collusion by the Trump campaign with Russia and obstruction of justice by the White House.

  2. rikyrah says:

    Paul Ryan Is the Silent Partner in Trump’s War on the Rule of Law
    Jonathan Chait

    In early January, FBI director Christopher Wray and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein met with House Speaker Paul Ryan and asked him to rein in his attack dog, Devin Nunes, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. Nunes, who also attended the meeting, had supposedly “recused” himself from the Trump-Russia investigation, but in fact was running an increasingly vicious counter-investigation against the Department of Justice in an attempt to defend the administration. Wray and Rosenstein worried that Nunes’s subpoenas were threatening to expose sensitive law-enforcement documents. But, CNN reported on January 4, “it became clear that Ryan wasn’t moved and the officials wouldn’t have his support if they proceeded to resist Nunes’ remaining highly classified requests.”

    Since then, Nunes’s campaign against federal law enforcement has escalated. He has compiled a secret memo making wild allegations of conspiracies and even criminality against all of Trump’s legal antagonists. The entire conservative media infrastructure, goaded on by Trump himself, is foaming at the mouth to publish the Nunes memo. Democrats insist the memo is a distortion of the underlying intelligence regarding the FBI, but the Department of Justice also warns that publishing this underlying intelligence — which would be necessary to refute Nunes’ allegations — “would be extraordinarily reckless” and compromise national security.

    A side effect of Nunes’s campaign to discredit Trump’s investigators is to threaten to burn down the credibility and effectiveness of federal law enforcement. Here is the point that is largely absent from this drama: This is all happening because Paul Ryan wants it to happen.

  3. rikyrah says:

    Siding with the GOP, Ryan sees possible ‘malfeasance’ at the FBI
    01/31/18 12:54 PM
    By Steve Benen

    With many federal law enforcement officials, including Donald Trump’s handpicked FBI director, pushing back against the release of the “Nunes memo,” is there any chance they might get some help from House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.)?

    Apparently not. Here’s what the Wisconsin Republican told reporters at a Capitol Hill briefing yesterday:

    “There may have been malfeasance at the FBI by certain individuals. So it is our job, in conducting transparent oversight of the executive branch, to get to the bottom of that. Sunshine is the best disinfectant. And so, what we want is all of this information to come out so that transparency can reign supreme and accountability can occur.”

    Yes, now that you mention it, it was kind of amusing to hear Ryan talk about the importance of executive branch oversight after House Republicans have done effectively nothing to check Donald Trump over the last year. His comments about “transparency” weren’t much better given the circumstances.

    The comments followed an unconfirmed Fox News report that the Speaker, in comments to reporters at a breakfast yesterday, said in reference to the memo and the FBI, “Let it all out, get it all out there. Cleanse the organization.”

    • Ametia says:

      “CLEANSE” THE WHITE HOUSE,MOFO, and you also too.

      This Ayn Rand bitch needs to go.

    • Ametia says:

      Watchdog requests investigation of Paul Ryan for allowing Trump to use State of the Union feed for fundraising

      The watchdog group Public Citizen on Wednesday requested that the U.S. Congress launch an immediate investigation into Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) after President Donald Trump was allowed to use live video of the State of the Union address to raise funds for his campaign.

      In a statement released on Wednesday, Public Citizen said it had filed a complaint to have the House Ethics Committee and Office of Congressional Ethics to “investigate whether Speaker Paul Ryan violated House rules by allowing the Trump campaign to use a broadcast of the State of the Union address for campaign fundraising purposes.”

      According to the statement, Trump’s use of the live feed may run afoul of House rules.

      Rule V of the Rules of the House of Representatives states that the speaker is responsible for administering official broadcasts and recordings of floor proceedings and that these official audio and visual transmissions shall not be used for partisan campaign activities. The State of the Union address was broadcast from the floor of the House, which was then livestreamed on Trump’s reelection campaign Facebook page and Twitter feed. New donors were encouraged to make a campaign contribution in exchange for having their names listed in a crawl at the bottom of the screen.

      “Donald Trump commercialized and corrupted yet another national institution, making this just the latest disgraceful degradation by Trump of the presidency and our public institutions,” Public Citizen President Robert Weissman said. “This blatant selling of the presidency also appears to violate rules, which is why we are filing today’s complaint. Putting donors’ names on the screen essentially says, ‘This presidency is brought to you by Goldman Sachs, Dow Chemical, Koch Industries and Murray Energy.’”


      Read more:

  4. Ametia says:
  5. Ametia says:

    How soon the media move on from #45’s SOTU white nationalist GARBAGE. Now it’s train crashes and back to the FBI & Nunes memo.

  6. Ametia says:

    Michelle Obama Dishes To Ellen About Melania Trump’s Inauguration Gift
    Now we know what was inside that Tiffany box.

  7. Ametia says:

    Train carrying GOP lawmakers to West Virginia retreat collides with truck
    An Amtrak train carrying Republican lawmakers to an annual retreat in West Virginia has collided with at least one vehicle, according to one person aboard the train.
    The train is carrying members of the House and Senate, some of their spouses and children and aides, although it was not immediately clear if all members of the GOP conference are on board.
    Information about injuries was not immediately available.
    Around 11:20 a.m., there was “a very loud bang, crash and lurch and the train appears to be on the tracks,” the person said.–alert-national

    • Ametia says:

      That train carrying the GOP hitting the truck is like the GOP & #45′ s behaviors & policies hitting Americans

      To be clear, I don’t condone anyone being hurt.

  8. rikyrah says:

    The cupboard is bare: Trump runs out of new ideas
    01/31/18 08:43 AM
    By Steve Benen
    There’s a standard criticism of any State of the Union address: they tend to offer laundry lists of presidential priorities, which every chief executive asks Congress to advance. Some presidents have been more effective than others in presenting these laundry lists, but ultimately, the problem seems largely unavoidable.

    That is, in theory. One of the oddities of Donald Trump’s State of the Union was the absence of a laundry list – because the Republican president doesn’t seem to have much of an agenda. NBC News’ analysis touched on an important detail:

    Save for his vow to keep open the U.S. detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, Trump’s address was devoid of new proposals.

  9. rikyrah says:

    Trump’s infrastructure ‘plan’ is not what it appears to be
    01/31/18 09:20 AM
    By Steve Benen

    It’s become a running joke for those who cover the White House: in Trump World, every week is “Infrastructure Week.” It tends to get laughs because Donald Trump and his team have repeatedly suggested some kind of ambitious plan is in the works, but they never follow through with anything of value.

    And so it seemed notable that the president brought up the issue in his State of the Union – and included a new price tag:

    “Tonight, I’m calling on Congress to produce a bill that generates at least $1.5 trillion for the new infrastructure investment that our country so desperately needs. Every federal dollar should be leveraged by partnering with state and local governments and, where appropriate, tapping into private sector investment to permanently fix the infrastructure deficit.”

    The dollar figure was apparently jarring to Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.), who told Politico last night that “$1.5 trillion, I think, kind of sucked the oxygen out of the room for a moment, as no one expected a number that big.” He added, “And the obvious thing is, where are we with debt and deficit and how are we going to be able to pull it together?”

    The answer is, you won’t be able to pull it together – because Trump’s infrastructure “plan” isn’t real in any meaningful sense.

    The HuffPost’s Igor Bobic summarized the issue nicely:

    Trump’s latest plan will seek to leverage $200 billion in direct federal spending into an additional $800 billion in infrastructure investment from states, cities, nonprofits and the private sector. The plan puts a greater onus on state and local officials to find additional revenue to fund the projects, which will likely mean allowing more tolls or usage fees to create revenue streams that lure in private investors. The challenge is especially difficult for communities in rural areas – many of which supported Trump in 2016 – where fewer people are available to help spread the cost of new infrastructure.

    According to a leaked draft of Trump’s infrastructure proposal, 50 percent of the total outlay in federal dollars – $100 billion – will be used to encourage “state, local and private investment in core infrastructure by providing incentives in the form of grants.” Rural projects will receive another 25 percent of the total share of funding – $50 billion – while the remainder will go to existing loan programs and “transformative projects” like high-speed rail.

  10. Ametia says:

    How much longer do we have to put up with this orange POS who media has to grade, dissect, and fact check for LIES? Total waste of our brain power to witness a WHITE NATIONALIST in our White House

  11. Ametia says:
  12. rikyrah says:

    Dave Leonhardt of NYT :

    “In the daily circus of the Trump presidency — the tweets, the porn star, the racist trolling, the Russia investigation and the bizarro conspiracy theories about the Russia investigation — it’s easy to lose sight of normal political stories like Carrier. But normal stories are Trump’s biggest vulnerability, and the circus is actually his friend. Democrats would be wise to remind themselves of this fact every single day.”

  13. Breaking: Train carrying republicans to retreat hits trash truck

  14. Ametia says:

    Why 16 members of CBC did NOT attend the “WHITE NATIONALISTS SHITHOLE RALLY” last night

  15. Ametia says:
  16. Ametia says:
  17. Ametia says:

    Stacey Abrams Is In A Race To Become The First Black Female Governor In America
    If she wins Georgia’s Democratic primary in May and the November general election, history will be made

    n a world of black firsts and barrier breakers, Stacey Abrams is looking to shake things up in Georgia. She comes from modest beginnings, one of six children of Methodist ministers, which influenced her decision to seek public office in 2006. She became the first woman to lead either party in the Georgia General Assembly and the first African-American to lead the House of Representatives. Now, she’s running for Governor of Georgia and could become the first black female governor.
    Abrams made a career as a tax attorney and later became the deputy city attorney in Atlanta.

  18. rikyrah says:

    UH HUH
    UH HUH

    An Air Force sergeant recorded herself ranting about her black subordinates. Now she’s suspended.

    — Washington Post (@washingtonpost) January 31, 2018

  19. Liza says:

    Ha ha, this is funny. I didn’t watch the SOTU Klan Rally, but I can imagine this…

    • Ametia says:

      Yes, #45 could read like a kindergartner, and his supporters and the GOP would have wet dreams, ad long as what he says & does benefits them.

  20. rikyrah says:

    The Real Aim of The Secret (Nunes) Memo Is The Mueller Investigation

    Republicans are pushing the narrative that a cabal of politically biased law enforcement officials set out to sabotage Mr. Trump. And they are portraying a dossier written by Christopher Steele, a former British intelligence agent, which laid out unverified claims that Russia had compromised Mr. Trump and was conspiring with him, as the fountainhead of the Russia investigation. That assertion disregards unrelated evidence that Russia sought to influence the election and the pattern of contacts between Russians and Mr. Trump’s associates.

    Mr. Nunes’s three-and-a-half page memo bolsters conservatives’ story line. According to people who have read it, the memo centers on a fall 2016 application for a wiretap order targeting Carter Page, a onetime Trump campaign official who had visited Moscow that June and was preparing to return there in December. The memo is said to criticize law enforcement officials for including information provided by Mr. Steele in the application without adequately explaining to the judge that Democrats financed Mr. Steele’s research.

    Democrats have pushed back. Representative Adam B. Schiff, the top Democrat on the Intelligence Committee, who has seen the underlying classified materials on which the memo is based, has said the memo contains both inaccurate assertions and material omissions to misleadingly impugn law enforcement officials. Other people familiar with it say, for example, that Mr. Steele’s information was only one thread in a tapestry of evidence from various sources that the memo ignored, exaggerating its relative importance.

    Democrats on the committee produced their own classified memo that they said pointed out and explained inaccuracies in the Republican memo and filled in the missing context. But on Monday, the committee voted along party lines to make the Republican memo public and rejected a request to simultaneously make public the Democrats’ rebuttal.

    Asked on Tuesday about why it would not be more appropriate to make both memos public at the same time, Mr. Ryan was evasive. He said the Democratic memo first had to go through a process in which House members outside the Intelligence Committee could read it. Pressed on why the Republican memo should not be held back until that process was done, he said a reporter had asked enough questions.

    Mr. Ryan then began remarks he said he had prepared, stressing that he respected the F.B.I. and the Justice Department as important institutions for “keeping the rule of law intact.” But on Monday, Intelligence Committee Republicans signaled a widening attack on both institutions — informing Democrats that the committee has opened an investigation into them, according to Mr. Schiff — as they voted to make their memo public.

  21. rikyrah says:

    9h9 hours ago
    More Maggie Haberman Retweeted Chris Hayes
    A Kennedy speaking Spanish is … not the same as a Hispanic politician delivering this response


    1, A White Man speaking fluently to them shows respect, you ass kissing harpy.😠
    2. Yet ANOTHER reminder why I am happy that Wolff’s book shyt all over hers😄

  22. rikyrah says:

    A comment at BJ:

    The Thin Black Duke says:
    January 31, 2018 at 6:47 am
    @Baud: Thing is, the people who are most vulnerable to this propaganda are white. African-Americans and other people of color are subjected to the same hateful nonsense masquerading as news but are able to recognize it for what it is and ignore it. Which explains why the usual suspects work so hard to make voting as difficult as possible because most non-whites aren’t fooled. The only way to change things for the better in this country is to stop trying to reach to the white folks who have already make up their minds and make voting easier for everybody else before it’s too late.

  23. rikyrah says:

    More Sahil Kapur Retweeted Yashar Ali 🐘
    Stormy Daniels basically confirms on Kimmel’s show that this statement denying her Trump affair is fake — she says the signature isn’t hers.
    “I do not know where it came from.”

  24. rikyrah says:

    Didn’t waste one moment watching Dolt45 or the pundits who want to grade the Unqualified White Man on a Curve 😠

  25. rikyrah says:

    Lips Pursed

    Jake Tapper really asked Kamala Harris why the CBC refused to clap when the racist white president tried to take credit for his black predecessor’s accomplishment.

    — Ragnarok Lobster (@eclecticbrotha) January 31, 2018

  26. rikyrah says:

    “Americans are dreamers.” – @realDonaldTrump Wait..let us fix that…you meant, @realDonaldTrump, that DREAMers are Americans too? #SOTU

    — AmnestyInternational (@amnestyusa) January 31, 2018

    “Americans are dreamers too” is the new “all lives matter.” #sotu

    — Chloe Angyal (@ChloeAngyal) January 31, 2018

  27. rikyrah says:

    Kennedy addresses Dreamers in Spanish, then translates:

    “To all the Dreamers watching tonight, let me be clear: Ustedes son parte de nuestra historia. Vamos a luchar por ustedes y no nos vamos alejar.

    You are a part of our story. We will fight for you. We will not walk away.”

    — Sabrina Siddiqui (@SabrinaSiddiqui) January 31, 2018

  28. rikyrah says:

    He was on point
    This Luis Gutierrez statement on Trump’s speech is something

    — Ben Jacobs (@Bencjacobs) January 31, 2018

  29. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning Everyone 😄😄😄

  30. Good morning, everyone!

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