Dirty Deeds Done Not Cheap

In 2015 the law firm Perkins Coie, which also represented the Democratic National Committee, was hired by the Hillary Clinton Campaign. Early the following year it hired Fusion GPS to perform opposition research for the campaign. Fusion GPS provided the now-debunked Steele dossier that alleged Russian collusion with the Trump campaign. For the services performed during the campaign, the DNC paid the firm $5.6 million and the Clinton campaign paid them $3.6 million. Having the firm hire GPS Fusion meant that the connection would not be revealed through campaign financial disclosures but, in time, the connection was revealed, largely because of a defamation suit filed in Great Britain by Alfa Bank against Steele. In recent weeks, a key member of the firm, Mark Elias, who had been the Clinton campaign’s lawyer, left the firm and, this week, another member, Michael Sussman, was indicted by a federal grand jury called by Special Counsel John Durham of making a false statement to the FBI. Sussman pleaded not guilty.

The trial is some ways off, but in my view, getting an indictment against Sussman by a District of Columbia grand jury suggests the evidence must be compelling, and may, in fact, include confessions by one or more co-conspirators. The indictment is lengthy and detailed and raises the question of how many people may yet be charged for this years’ long political dirty trick.

Here’s a detailed look at the indictment.

Michael Sussmann used Clinton campaign funds to construct a now-debunked memo and other evidence alleging that computer communications between a server at the Alfa Bank in Russia and the Trump Tower in New York might be a secret backdoor communication system for Trump and Vladimir Putin to hijack the 2016 election.

Sussmann delivered the package in mid-September 2016 -- just weeks before Election Day as Trump and Clinton were locked in a tight race -- to then-FBI General Counsel James Baker, even after the team of computer experts warned the theory was a "red-herring," according to the indictment.

And then Sussmann falsely told Baker, the prosecutors alleged, he was providing the information to the FBI solely as a good citizen, and not on behalf of any client.

In fact, Sussmann was working on behalf of a tech executive and the Clinton campaign and charged nearly all the work on the Alfa Bank narrative to the Democratic presidential campaign, including his meeting with Baker, the indictment stated.

The alleged lying, Durham argued, deceived the FBI into thinking the allegations were coming from a neutral source -- Sussmann had been a cybersecurity expert -- and not an election-motivated client.

It was a diabolically engineered hoax. Clinton or her campaign (depending on your degree of naïveté) hired Perkins which hired GPS, who hired Steele, who made up scurrilous nonsense like the pee tape. They first peddled to the FBI a cock and bull story about the Alfa Bank communicating with Trump and then leaked the fact of a federal investigation to complaisant reporters. In so doing they lent credence to the charges. All the while, Sussman was, per the indictment, not acting on his own but “on behalf of The Hillary campaign committee and Rodney Joffe [Tech Executive 1 in the indictment] and Neustar [Internet Company 1 in the indictment].”

Why was the Sussman lie significant? Mark Wauck writes:

The importance of Sussmann’s lie lies in the fact that, had the FBI known that the allegations against Trump came directly from the Clinton Campaign, the credibility of the allegations would have been seriously undermined. The FBI would have thought and rethought the idea of even opening such an investigation. That was the reason Sussmann lied, and by doing so he gained his end: a media buzz about the FBI investigating Trump’s supposed secret channel to Russia, just a week before the election.

What Durham’s investigation determined was that Joffe -- who hoped to obtain a plum cybersecurity position in a Clinton administration -- had exploited his access to non-public internet data to conduct opposition research against Trump and recruited others to assist him. Joffe, Sussman, and Perkins Coie had coordinated with representatives of the Clinton Campaign to concoct the material that Sussmann presented to Baker.

Wauck thinks others are implicated in this conspiracy but whether or not they face prosecution is as yet unknown. He finds from the recitation of facts in the indictment that Elias and FusionGPS/Simpson and Chris Steele were all involved, and the charge of lying to the FBI may not be the only charge against Sussman as an excerpt of his testimony before Congress in the indictment seems less than candid.

Why did Hillary choose this tack for her anti-Trump dirty trick of Russian Collusion? Everything she does is to deflect from the wrongdoing of herself and her husband by claiming the wrongdoing is by others. A psychologist could explain this to you.

John Solomon of Just the News offers the most plausible explanation:

The effort was launched after Clinton's campaign funded a poll in 2015 showing her own ties to Russia and Moscow money paid to her husband, ex-President Bill Clinton, were threatening her path to the presidency, according to documents made public last year in "Fallout," a book by this reporter and coauthor Seamus Bruner.

The first leg of the collusion narrative was run by Steele, who used his MI-6 credentials and his prior ties to the FBI and high-ranking DOJ official Bruce Ohr to walk in his infamous dossier to U.S. law enforcement and intelligence in the summer of 2016. The FBI ultimately concluded Steele's dossier was riddled with Russian disinformation and disproved evidence.

The second leg was Sussmann, who crafted information from computer experts supporting Hillary Clinton into the tale of the Alfa Bank server back door. That narrative was flagged by Sussmann's team as unlikely even before he pitched it to the FBI, according to the indictment, and the theory was ultimately dismissed by the FBI and Russia Special Counsel Robert Mueller. "It wasn't true," Mueller testified to Congress in 2019.

And the third leg of the dirty trick consisted of the efforts of federal bureaucrats inside the FBI, State Department and intelligence community -- many of whom disliked Trump -- who managed to deceive the FISA court, the Congress and the American public, often by using leaks to news media outlets to sustain a collusion story that had fallen apart within weeks of Steele's first approach.

Don Surber is especially harsh in assessing the media role in the hoax: he calls them the “ unindicted co-conspirators" naming "CNN, Jake Tapper, Carl Bernstein, the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Pulitzer Committee which honored and vouched for the Post and the Times, and just about every political reporter and columnist in America."

Worse, he shows how they continue to mislead in their reports of the Sussman indictment:

ABC implies that he was not working for Clinton.

No, no, no.

He's just some guy who worked at a law firm that once represented Hillary.

Never mind that Sussmann was a partner at the law firm. Never mind that he was peddling Hillary's fake opposition research to the FBI. ABC wants you to believe he was just some guy who did something that day. [snip] The New York Times spun it as strictly partisan, billing its story, "Trump-Era Special Counsel Secures Indictment of Lawyer for Firm With Democratic Ties."

Not "Lawyer Charged With Misleading The FBI About Russiagate."

But why would NYT start being honest? You don't get Pulitzers by telling the truth anymore.

Hamas-Shielding AP was even worse in its reported, as it did not mention Hillary until Paragraph 4. Most news outlets ran just 3 paragraphs.

Instead, AP continued to peddle its Fake News that Mueller somehow verified Russiagate, even though not one of his indictments was related to Russiagate.

Glenn Greenwald echoes this more tersely on Twitter: “Russiagate was a gigantic fraud perpetrated on the public by a union of CIA and FBI operatives, the liberal/anti-Trump sector of the corporate press and the Democratic party.”

Perkins Coie is involved in far more election shenanigans than this, including dozens of pre-election lawsuits to overturn election laws in 2020. Among those challenged by the firm was a Texas law to end straight-ticket voting. They persuaded a federal court judge to void the law on the ground that straight-ticket voting would “speed lines and reduce the risk of virus exposure.” The Fifth Circuit overruled her, noting, “the Legislature had passed the law, state election officials had planned for it, and that ‘courts should not alter election rules on the eve of an election’.” It denied the firm’s effort to supplement the record. Then the firm tried to hide from the Fifth Circuit that its second motion to supplement the record in that case was virtually identical to one the Circuit had already denied. So angry was the Circuit Court that it sanctioned the attorneys for filing “redundant and misleading" information on the case.

If the ABA follows the lead of the Pulitzer Committee it will vouch for and honor this firm as Pulitzer vouched for and honored the media shills played by the firm on behalf of Hillary and her party.

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