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Hunting Leaks, Trump Officials Focused on Democrats in Congress

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As the Justice Department investigated who was behind leaks of classified information early in the Trump administration, it took a highly unusual step: Prosecutors subpoenaed Apple for data from the accounts of at least two Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee, aides and family members. One was a minor.

All told, the records of at least a dozen people tied to the committee were seized in 2017 and early 2018, including those of Representative Adam B. Schiff of California, then the panel’s top Democrat and now its chairman, according to committee officials and two other people briefed on the inquiry. Representative Eric Swalwell of California said in an interview Thursday night that he had also been notified that his data had subpoenaed.

Prosecutors, under the beleaguered attorney general, Jeff Sessions, were hunting for the sources behind news media reports about contacts between Trump associates and Russia. Ultimately, the data and other evidence did not tie the committee to the leaks, and investigators debated whether they had hit a dead end and some even discussed closing the inquiry.

But William P. Barr revived languishing leak investigations after he became attorney general a year later. He moved a trusted prosecutor from New Jersey with little relevant experience to the main Justice Department to work on the Schiff-related case and about a half-dozen others, according to three people with knowledge of his work who did not want to be identified discussing federal investigations.

The zeal in the Trump administration’s efforts to hunt leakers led to the extraordinary step of subpoenaing communications metadata from members of Congress — a nearly unheard-of move outside of corruption investigations. While Justice Department leak investigations are routine, current and former congressional officials familiar with the inquiry said they could not recall an instance in which the records of lawmakers had been seized as part of one.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/06/10/us/politics/justice-department-leaks-trump-administration.html

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2 hours ago, retrofade said:

Remember when Trump was on Twitter almost daily because his campaign was "spied on" because a second rate staffer got attention for playing footsie with the Russians too much?

Conjobs always cry the loudest for activities they are currently engaged in except they are doing much, much worse.  Spying on committee chairman in congress!?!?

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Just now, TheSanDiegan said:

Guaranteed silence from the Nuthuggery.

Nah, it'll just be excuses, justifications, and saying that it was okay because Trump was "spied on" during the 2016 election, which he wasn't. 

edit: or they'll use some form of, "BUT OBAMA!!!!!!!!1111!!"

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What amazes me is how close to a dictatorship we actually were.  I always hated Trump but I didn't expect him to be able to collapse the whole system like he did.....

We were a few state elected leaders away from a full constitutional crisis.  The crazy things is the nuthuggers are just fine with handing Trump a dictatorship as long as they get to be in the catbird seat.  All dictators around the world seem to be propped up by their ethno supporters.  

Talk about the collective freak out that white supremacy is giving way to other folks actually having an equal say in the democracy.  It really is that simple but they invent realities to fool themselves and to ignore they are just simply white supremacists that want to be led by a great white (orange) king.

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49 minutes ago, retrofade said:

Nah, it'll just be excuses, justifications, and saying that it was okay because Trump was "spied on" during the 2016 election, which he wasn't. 

edit: or they'll use some form of, "BUT OBAMA!!!!!!!!1111!!"

49 minutes later…

 

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Alternative thread title: You guys were right, spying on political opponents was always bad, and we realize it now that it happened to the guy who lied to us for years telling us it was good.

Ah-mazing

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Barr is quickly trying to figure out who to throw under the bus.

Meantime Gaetz sees it as a way to imply the investigation into him is simply another case of the DOJ going after those they do not like from both parties.

Gaetz says "DOJ has a very nasty tendency to target its critics, Republican and Democrat."

https://www.politico.com/news/2021/06/11/barr-distances-democratic-subpoenas-493491

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For too long the legislative branch has pawned off its responsibilities to the executive and the only thing that they had was the promise that we had an executive who would respect separation of powers and the congress in general.  With Trump we had a president who had nothing but contempt for congress.  As with the filibuster, the prior "normal" expected we would have a good faith actor as the president/minority party but when you don't have those things those silly little niceties seem quaint don't they?

Joe Biden needs to be focused on neutering the executive branch just in case we get another neo fascist in there or we are in real trouble.  

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8 hours ago, Akkula said:

What amazes me is how close to a dictatorship we actually were.  I always hated Trump but I didn't expect him to be able to collapse the whole system like he did.....

We were a few state elected leaders away from a full constitutional crisis.  The crazy things is the nuthuggers are just fine with handing Trump a dictatorship as long as they get to be in the catbird seat.  All dictators around the world seem to be propped up by their ethno supporters.  

Talk about the collective freak out that white supremacy is giving way to other folks actually having an equal say in the democracy.  It really is that simple but they invent realities to fool themselves and to ignore they are just simply white supremacists that want to be led by a great white (orange) king.

We aren't out of the woods on becoming a dictatorship just yet.......there's a solid 35-40% of this country that would willingly hand trump the reigns to a dictatorship if they got the chance, and another 10-15% that aren't really doing much to stop that from happening 

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This was not a targeted subpoena request. It was a wide fishing net to see what they could find.

Metadata requested from Apple on 109 different communication points? This was a look at a large number of people.

It also involved more than Apple. Microsoft received a subpoena in 2017.

My guess we will hear about subpoenas sent to ISPs, Google, and others in coming days.

 

 

 

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16 hours ago, Akkula said:

For too long the legislative branch has pawned off its responsibilities to the executive and the only thing that they had was the promise that we had an executive who would respect separation of powers and the congress in general.  With Trump we had a president who had nothing but contempt for congress.  As with the filibuster, the prior "normal" expected we would have a good faith actor as the president/minority party but when you don't have those things those silly little niceties seem quaint don't they?

Joe Biden needs to be focused on neutering the executive branch just in case we get another neo fascist in there or we are in real trouble.  

Looks like he isn’t listening to you as Bidumb has signed 50 executive orders so far. That’s on pace to shatter dictator Trumps 220 in four years. Neither would come remotely close to FDRs 3721 EO’s.

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Crazy how fragile democracy is.  We take it for granted.  Someone I did business with once said there are three types of people:

- people who do what they should do

- people who do what the law requires them to do

- people who do what they can get away with 


Society is determined by people and laws/contracts.  Things can change rapidly, especially the people part. 

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19 minutes ago, 415hawaiiboy said:

Crazy how fragile democracy is.  We take it for granted.  Someone I did business with once said there are three types of people:

- people who do what they should do

- people who do what the law requires them to do

- people who do what they can get away with 


Society is determined by people and laws/contracts.  Things can change rapidly, especially the people part. 

I like to be an optimist. “It takes very little to govern good people, very little. And bad people can’t be governed at all.”

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