The most recent smack in the face has come from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court, the secretive collective of judges that hear national security evidence and decide whether to allow the government to spy on Americans.
Most of those warrant applications are approved; very few ever get rejected, which has led critics over the years to charge that the court was nothing more than a rubber stamp for Uncle Sam’s spy agencies.
It’s hard to refute that allegation, especially after an appointment the court made in recent days as part of the FBI’s “reform” following their Spygate outrage.
After Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz identified scores of incidents where FBI agents purposefully defrauded the court with phony “evidence” contained in a fabricated “Russia dossier,” the chief judge ordered the bureau to make some “reforms” to ensure that they were never fooled again.
Yes, this is what passes for reform in official Washington: Ignore actual criminal behavior, call for some ineffective action that you claim will ‘do the trick,’ and move on.
Except this time the ‘action’ taken was really just a double-down on the original infraction. As reported by investigative reporter Sharyl Attkisson on Friday, the FISA court posted an order instructing lawyer David Kris to “assist the court” in analyzing the bureau’s response to the earlier ordered fixes to the Spygate abuses identified by Horowitz.
The issue: Kris is a known political opponent of President Trump.
After Horowitz testified to Congress last month that the FISA surveillance process should be fixed “from top to bottom,” the court appoints Kris, who — on social media — has called GOP Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) “a politicized, dishonest [Intelligence Community] overseer who attempts to mislead.”
Nunes, in fact, has been in the lead in exposing the Deep State players who targeted the president for removal from office.
“The Nunes memo was dishonest,” said Kris. “And if it is allowed to stand, we risk significant collateral damage to essential elements of our democracy.” (Related: ‘The crazies were right, and I was wrong’: Former federal prosecutor speaks of ‘rogue’ FBI & FISA court abuses.)
There’s more, as Zero Hedge reports:
He tweeted that Trump and his advisors should be “worried” that the “walls are closing in on him” regarding the Mueller probe. Kris also bought into the now-disproven conspiracy theory about Trump colluding with Russia and Putin. But even more importantly, since that time, Kris has advocated for President Trump’s removal. Kris’s vocal opinions on President Trump and his politics present numerous, obvious conflicts of interest.
Unreal. This is the guy who is supposed to ensure that a crooked FBI who targeted Trump…doesn’t do it again.
In addition, Kris writes for the anti-Trump blog “Lawfare,” and called Lawfare’s chief, Benjamin Wittes, “incisive.”
Wittes, by the way, is the man who wrote of the need for an “insurance policy” against Trump prior to Trump’s election:
[O]ur democracy needs a health insurance policy…The courts have a few obvious advantages, starting with hundreds of independent judges of both parties whom Trump cannot remove from office and who don’t have to face his supporters in forthcoming elections.
Wittes also pals around with fired FBI Director (and one of the Spygate ringleaders) James Comey, who was referred for criminal charges for his mishandling and leaking of government information (the DoJ under Barr passed up charges though, saying Comey didn’t mean any harm).
President Trump took notice of this travesty on Saturday, remarking on Twitter as he always does that “you can’t make this up.”
If the people responsible for Spygate are allowed to get away with it, our system of justice no longer exists.