Thursday, January 18, 2018
A Federalist 57 Website
D. R. ZUKERMAN, proprietor

How to tell if the Anti-Trump Gang is Getting Nervous


January 5, 2018 --

Look for op-ed articles with titles like this from Yascha Mounk in The New York Times, December 21, 2017: "The Real Coup Plot is Trump's"

Falsely referring to a Trump "Coup Plot," Mounk says that special counsel Robert S. Muller III "is now being maligned as a Democratic stooge out to sabotage the Republican Party." Mounk indicated that it is "ridiculous" to think that the Republican Mueller would be out to get President Trump. As if there is not a host of Republicans who would like to see an end to the Trump presidency.

These, after all, are the Republicans who are appealed to, regularly, in the media to turn on President Trump. For example, The New York Times, December 19, ran a story on alleged anti-Trump sentiment in Republican suburbs, quoting alleged GOP -Trump-haters.

But then, the Times has a habit of running articles warning that the Trump presidency will have dire consequences for the GOP. See, for example, this lead story in the Times, May 8, 2016: "G.O.P. UNRAVELS/AS PARTY FACES/ TRUMP TAKEOVER."

Had that headline predicted the future, this headline could never appeared across the Times front page, December 21, 2017: 'G.O.P. EXULTS AS CONGRESS DELIVERS TAX BILL"

What, then, could the anti-Trump crowd be nervous about? Perhaps about reports that congressional Republicans are probing the Russia-gate campaign against the president -- and, next year, will present the facts to the American people. Would such a report set forth the politicization of the Department of Justice, and the FBI, and the intelligence community under the Obama administration?

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Red Line

*********** Did Domestic Politics Lead to Russiagate?

January 5, 2018 --

Politico, December 20, reported a secret effort by House Republicans "to build a case that senior leaders of the Justice Department and FBI improperly -- and perhaps criminally -- mishandled the contents of a dossier that describes alleged ties between President Donald Trump and Russia...." Letters that are in the public record, from Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley to James Comey, then FBI director, and Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein, suggest that there is nothing really secret about what congressional Republicans are trying to do -- if only the media would pay attention to this public record. Among other things, the letters, in part, ask for information concerning possible political conflicts of interest that should have prompted Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe to recuse himself from investigating the Hillary Clinton email matter.

The Grassley letters to the FBI director, and, more recently to Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein, express concern that the FBI was not impartial in handling the Clinton and Trump investigations during the 2016 presidential concern -- and, indeed, seem to suggest that the bureau was working to defeat candidate Trump The first Grassley letter, to director Comey, is dated March 6, 2017, and was prompted by a Washington Post report that the FBI agreed to pay former British spy Christopher Steele for his anti-Trump dossier. The most recent letter LPR has seen, dated June 28, 2017, is from Chairman Grasssley to Mr. Rosenstein, concerning Deputy Director McCabe and the FBI's failure to be responsive to the chairman's inquiries.

The following is taken from a long paragraph in Grassley's June 28, 2017 letter to Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein:

"First, the Department of Justice Office of Inspector General is examining [the] failure [of Acting Director Andrew McCabe] to recuse himself from the Clinton investigation due to his political relationship with [Virginia Gov. Terry] McAuliffe. Second, the Office of Special Counsel (OSC) is investigating allegations that he violated the Hatch Act by engaging in political campaign activities. Third, he is also reportedly the subject of pending Equal Employment Opportunity (EE0) complaint by a female FBI agent for sex discrimination, who alleges she was targeted for retaliation because of her complaint. According to new press reports, Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn provided a letter for support for the complainant in that case which raises serious questions about why Mr. McCabe also faield to recuse himself from investigations involving Mr. Flynn...."

The New York Times, in a December 24 story reporting that McCabe plans to retire soon, called McCabe " an unlikely lightning rod who has been repeatedly attacked by President Trump and congressional Republicans," but did not mention that he has been investigated for conflicts of interest. In view of the ties of McCabe and his wife to Gov. McAuliffe, LPR wonders if the "unlikely " in "unlikely lightning rod" is an attempt at...fake news.

In his March 28, 2017 letter to FBI Director Comey, Chairnman Grassley wrote, in part, that the Judiciary Committee "requires information to determine: (1) the extent whch which FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe has been involved in the FBI's investigation of President Trump's associates and Russia; (2) whether that involvement raises the appearance of a conflict of interest in light of his wife's ties with Clinton associates; and (3) whether Mr. McCabe has been or should be recused from the investigation." This letter indicated the chairman's concern that politics was at the root of the FBI's probe of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

Chairman Grassley, in an April 28, 2017 letter to Comey, sought information on any payment made by the FBI to Christopher Steele, the former British spy who gathered the material in the anti-Trump dossier that remains uncorroborated. The Grassley letters, through June 28, indicate frustration with the FBI's refusal to provide the requested information.

Of course, more recent reports have revealed significant anti-Trump bias at upper levels of the FBI and the Justice Department. Rasmussen reported a poll, December 18, that 48 percent of respondents believe senior FBI and Justice officials broke the law in an effort to defeat Mr. Trump's presidential bid. Forty-one percent disagree. The longer the Mueller probe drags on, the more impatient the public will get -- to be derided by elites for its "deplorable" approach to politics.

LPR has a hunch that the House Republicans cited in the Politico report are reviewing documents to determine if, in fact, the real meddling in the 22016 presidential election originated from domestic sources intent on making sure Donald J. Trump did not get elected president.

After all, the now infamous texts between FBI agent Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, reported in The New York Times December 24, to have been "close to Mr. McCabe," are evidence of a strong anti-Trump mindset.

Did McCabe and others at the FBI and Department of Justice share that mindset? Please note: Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein has been vigorous in defending special counsel Robert S. Mueller III. LPR is not aware that Rosenstein's defense of Mueller extends to McCabe, as well.



A Theory From LPR

January 5, 2018 --

Was Russiagate intended, not only to distract attention away from the Clinton emaIl issue, but as a political means of addressing what The New York Times, in its August 20, 2016 editorial (published August 21, 2016, called '[t]he toxic effects of Trumpism..."? Consider, please, the present work of special counsel Mueller. Is it not likely that a special counsel would also have been named had Hillary Clinton won the presidency -- to make sure, as David Plouffe tweeted, in June 2016, the destruction of Trump and "his kind." How would such destruction have been accomplished? By means of prosecutions based on material prepared for the purpose by the Clinton administration

Consider, please this reaction from E.J. Dionne, in his Washington Post column, December 15, 2016, to Trump's sarcastic comment hoping that Russia would find the 30,000 missing Clinton emails.

Dionne commented: "By publicly inviting a foreign power to intervene in our election, Trump put himself ahead of the nation's interest in holding an election that would be untainted by foreign meddling."

How much easier it would be to Dionne's bizarre assertion the basis of an indictment of defeated candidate Trump -- with the documents establishing the truth of the matter never to see the light, guarded by the folks who created Russiagate.

In short, LPR has a hunch that the anti-Trump forces are engaged in a desperate attempt to keep the truth about Russiagate hidden.

That, of course, might well serve the aim of a Trump impeachment: insuring that the truth about Russiagate would remain covered up


Red Line

A Glimmer of Reason?

January 5, 2018 --

Bret Stephens, in hi December 23 column, "Tax Bill Hysteria," expressed support for the tax bill passed by congressional Republicans and signed by President Trump, and warned Democrats that their campaign to denounce the tax measure is "bad politics."

Stephens predicts that middle-income taxpayers will see a tex reduction of some "$1,100."

He also pointed to the nation's "most robust economic growth in over a decade." Unstated by Stephens, that the left's "hysteria" over the tax bill are of a piece with its general anti-Trump hysteria.

Is it more likely or less likely that voters, next November would elect an impeachment Congress to remove a president in good economic times?


Red Line

If President Trump is "unfit," how explain his appointment of Nikki Haley as US ambassador to the UN?

January 5, 2018 --

The following is taken from Ambassador's remarks in the Security Council, December 18, 2017 explaining her veto of the draft resolution opposing U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as capital of Israel.

"What is troublesome to some people is not that the United States has harmed the peace process -- we have, in fact, done so such thing. Rather, what is troublesome to some people is that the United States had the courage and honesty to recognize a fundamental reality.

Jerusalem has been the political, cultural, and spiritual homeland of the Jewish people for thousands of years. They have had no other capital city. But the United States' recognition of the obvious--that Jerusalem is the capital and seat of the modern Israeli government -- is too much for some." Imagine, a proud American representing America at the UN.


Red Line

Thomas L. Friedman -- one-way on disparagement

January 5, 2018 --

In his New York Times column, December 20 , Mr. Fried noted: "In terms of institutions, Trump has personally disparaged the F.B.I. the C.I.A. and the Justice Department." It is not to be expected that the columnist will comment on the report in The Times, December 24 "that a top F.B.I. lawyer and counterintelligence agent traded disparaging text messages about the president."

And how about this for disparagement: "Over the past year..., the FBI's reputation and credibility have suffered substantial damage, and it has affected the entire Department of Justice.

That is deeply troubling to many Department employees and veterans, legislators and citizens." Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein, in his May 9, 2017 memorandum to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, recommending the dismissal of James Comey as director of the FBI.

(There was no mention of Russiagate in the memorandum.)



Red Line

What did President Obama Know on August 3, 2016

January 5, 2018 --

The front page of The New York Times, August 3, 2016 carried this headline: ''Obama Urges/G.O.P. Leaders/To Snub Trump."

This has got LPR to wondering if President Obama had, by the beginning of August, 2016 seen the material in the anti-Trump dossier gathered by Christopher Steele from Russian sources.

(If indeed Russian sources provided the material in the dossier, how come Steele has not come under suspicion of colluding with Russians?)

Will we indeed learn in 2018 that the Steele dossier was seized on by the FBI as the means of getting a FISA judge to approve surveillance on the Trump campaign?


Red Line

Michel Goodwin on Trump Derangement Syndrome
(expressed, for example, by David Remnick)

January 5, 2018 --

Goodwin, in his December 24 New York Post column, thought that The Resistance would peter out after six months. "But it's now clear that the mob-like motivation isn't going to disappear. It's become a steamroller force on the left." Goodwin should not be surprised.

The left's immediate reaction to Trump's win should have madeit clear that hatred of Trump would endure.

David Remnick, editor of The New Yorker magazine wrote the day after the Trump election, "It is impossible to react to this moment with anything less than revulsion and profound anxiety." He went on to denounce the voters: "That the electorate has, in its plurality, decided to live in Trump's world of vanity, hate, arrogance, untruth and recklessness, his disdain for democratic norms, is a fact that will lead, inevitably, to all manner of national decline and suffering."

And what will enrage the left even more? A political reality that shows them to be wrong, tragically so.



Red Line

LPR Photo Observations

January 5, 2018 --

Lenox getting treat, Libby looking on.
Lenox on January 4
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January 5, 2018 --

Did the Left Take Jared Halbrook's Advice?

Jared Halbrook, of Green Bay, Wis., was quoted on the front page of The New York Times, October 28, 2016, as predicting that Trump voters would march on state capitols if Trump lost the election. Halbrook continued: "'They're going to do whatever needs to be done to get her out of office, because she does not belong there.'"

From William McGurn, "Why Elites Hate"

In his Wall Street Journal column, June 6, 2017, Mr. McGurn commented: "The modern American progressive has no faith in the democratic process because he has no trust in the American people."

A Hint of Federalist No. 57 ...

From Betsy McCaughey in her New York Post column, December 21, on relocating regulators out of Washington ,D.C., to be closer to the people: "Imagine regulators hav ing to rub elbows with the peoiple being regulated"

And Just Consider the Media Howls...

...if people investigating Hillary Clinton shared thousand of anti-Clinton texts and worked for a special counsel whose team consisted mainly of conservative donors -- with not a leftist donor in sight. For the Trump-hating media, the evidence of anti-Trump bias in the bureaucracy, along with a special counsel team made up largely of Clinton donors, seems, to LPR, to be no problem, no problem at all.

A Brief Rebuke?

The New York Times, December 22, 2017 reported: "A lop-sided majority of United Nations members rebuked the United States on Thursday, denouncing its decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital ...."

The Times, December 23, reported that the UN Security Council voted 15-0 to place "new sanctions on North Korea, "proposed by the United States".


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In Memory Of …

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