Horowitz report leak to CNN: Former FBI lawyer under criminal investigation for altering document related to FISA surveillance

The American public finally is beginning to learn that the miscreants behind the Russia Hoax are being prosecuted.  The fact that fanatically anti-Trump CNN received the first leak from the forthcoming I.G. Horowitz report about the criminal justice system's response to the plot to foist the Russia Hoax on America tells us that someone affiliated with the targeted official is trying to get ahead of the story and shape further discussion along avenues favorable to the defendant.  Here is how CNN led off its online report:

A former FBI lawyer is under criminal investigation after allegedly altering a document related to 2016 surveillance of a Trump campaign adviser, several people briefed on the matter told CNN.

The possibility of a substantive change to an investigative document is likely to fuel accusations from President Donald Trump and his allies that the FBI committed wrongdoing in its investigation of connections between Russian election meddling and the Trump campaign.

The finding is expected to be part of Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz's review of the FBI's effort to obtain warrants under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act on Carter Page, a former Trump campaign aide. Horowitz will release the report next month.

But it's a lot more entertaining to watch Wolf Blitzer break the news to the CNN audience at airports and other public spaces as well as a few homes.  He laments that it will "provide ammunition" to defenders of President Trump.  When Trump-hating former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara came on to comment, neither man seemed too thrilled about the network's big scoop.


YouTube screen grab.

To his credit, Bharara emphasized how serious the reported infraction would be:

Here's what CNN is worried about:

A finding of alleged wrongdoing from Horowitz could further fuel Republican criticism and conspiracies about previous investigators' targeting of Trump associates.  It could also provide them a political boost at a moment where Democrats' impeachment investigation into Trump's political quid pro quo with Ukraine has battered the President.

The Washington Post's account of the story points to a lower-level official as the party under investigation:

The person under scrutiny has not been identified but is not a high-ranking official — they worked beneath former Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok, according to people familiar with the investigation who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss material that has not yet been made public.

A much longer report from Fox News points to an interesting aspect of the Washington Post story:

The Post, hours after publishing its story, conspicuously removed the portion of its reporting that the FBI employee involved was underneath Peter Strzok, the FBI's since-fired head of counterintelligence. The Post did not offer an explanation for the change, which occurred shortly after midnight.

That mention has been restored and reads as it is cited above.

Fox News also mentions that Gen. Michael Flynn's new lawyer, Sidney Powell, has also asserted FBI misconduct in altering documents:

Page is not the only Trump official to allege misconduct by the FBI. Last month, an explosive court filing from Michael Flynn's legal team alleged that FBI agents manipulated official records of the former national security adviser's 2017 interview that led to him being charged with lying to investigators. Flynn's attorneys demanded the FBI search its internal "Sentinel" system to find more evidence of allegedly doctored files.

Newly released text messages involving text messages between Strzok and former FBI lawyer Lisa Page revealed that Page -- who was not present for the Flynn interview -- had apparently made "edits" to the so-called "302" witness report in the case, which was key to Flynn's prosecution on a false statements charge. Page told Strzok on February 10, 2017 that she "gave my edits to Bill to put on your desk."

Could Lisa Page be the official who is being investigated?  I have long suspected she is cooperating with investigators, based on her demeanor in public and the incriminating nature of her text message exchanges.  But I thought she was relatively high-ranking in the FBI's bureaucracy.  Maybe there is more than one former FBI lawyer who is cooperating and may be seeking a plea bargain in return for implicating higher-ups.

I have been waiting years for this side of the story to be told.  Horowitz, Barr, Durham, and Huber have all been properly circumspect about their investigations.  It is the bugs scrambling about as the rock is being overturned that are doing the leaking...because they are scared.

The American public finally is beginning to learn that the miscreants behind the Russia Hoax are being prosecuted.  The fact that fanatically anti-Trump CNN received the first leak from the forthcoming I.G. Horowitz report about the criminal justice system's response to the plot to foist the Russia Hoax on America tells us that someone affiliated with the targeted official is trying to get ahead of the story and shape further discussion along avenues favorable to the defendant.  Here is how CNN led off its online report:

A former FBI lawyer is under criminal investigation after allegedly altering a document related to 2016 surveillance of a Trump campaign adviser, several people briefed on the matter told CNN.

The possibility of a substantive change to an investigative document is likely to fuel accusations from President Donald Trump and his allies that the FBI committed wrongdoing in its investigation of connections between Russian election meddling and the Trump campaign.

The finding is expected to be part of Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz's review of the FBI's effort to obtain warrants under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act on Carter Page, a former Trump campaign aide. Horowitz will release the report next month.

But it's a lot more entertaining to watch Wolf Blitzer break the news to the CNN audience at airports and other public spaces as well as a few homes.  He laments that it will "provide ammunition" to defenders of President Trump.  When Trump-hating former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara came on to comment, neither man seemed too thrilled about the network's big scoop.


YouTube screen grab.

To his credit, Bharara emphasized how serious the reported infraction would be:

Here's what CNN is worried about:

A finding of alleged wrongdoing from Horowitz could further fuel Republican criticism and conspiracies about previous investigators' targeting of Trump associates.  It could also provide them a political boost at a moment where Democrats' impeachment investigation into Trump's political quid pro quo with Ukraine has battered the President.

The Washington Post's account of the story points to a lower-level official as the party under investigation:

The person under scrutiny has not been identified but is not a high-ranking official — they worked beneath former Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok, according to people familiar with the investigation who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss material that has not yet been made public.

A much longer report from Fox News points to an interesting aspect of the Washington Post story:

The Post, hours after publishing its story, conspicuously removed the portion of its reporting that the FBI employee involved was underneath Peter Strzok, the FBI's since-fired head of counterintelligence. The Post did not offer an explanation for the change, which occurred shortly after midnight.

That mention has been restored and reads as it is cited above.

Fox News also mentions that Gen. Michael Flynn's new lawyer, Sidney Powell, has also asserted FBI misconduct in altering documents:

Page is not the only Trump official to allege misconduct by the FBI. Last month, an explosive court filing from Michael Flynn's legal team alleged that FBI agents manipulated official records of the former national security adviser's 2017 interview that led to him being charged with lying to investigators. Flynn's attorneys demanded the FBI search its internal "Sentinel" system to find more evidence of allegedly doctored files.

Newly released text messages involving text messages between Strzok and former FBI lawyer Lisa Page revealed that Page -- who was not present for the Flynn interview -- had apparently made "edits" to the so-called "302" witness report in the case, which was key to Flynn's prosecution on a false statements charge. Page told Strzok on February 10, 2017 that she "gave my edits to Bill to put on your desk."

Could Lisa Page be the official who is being investigated?  I have long suspected she is cooperating with investigators, based on her demeanor in public and the incriminating nature of her text message exchanges.  But I thought she was relatively high-ranking in the FBI's bureaucracy.  Maybe there is more than one former FBI lawyer who is cooperating and may be seeking a plea bargain in return for implicating higher-ups.

I have been waiting years for this side of the story to be told.  Horowitz, Barr, Durham, and Huber have all been properly circumspect about their investigations.  It is the bugs scrambling about as the rock is being overturned that are doing the leaking...because they are scared.