Trump Authorizes Release of Memo; Reveals Steele Dossier Used for FISA Warrants | NTK Network Trump Authorizes Release of Memo; Reveals Steele Dossier Used for FISA Warrants

Trump Authorizes Release of Memo; Reveals Steele Dossier Used for FISA Warrants

Revelations inside the previously-classified document indicate that the Russia investigation into the Trump campaign is based in part on Democrat-sponsored opposition research.

By NTK Staff | 02.02.2018 @1:47pm
Trump Authorizes Release of Memo; Reveals Steele Dossier Used for FISA Warrants

President Trump authorized the release of the GOP House Intelligence Committee memo Friday, and the contents of the document were promptly released to the public.

For weeks, Republicans, conservatives, and Trump allies called for the conclusions of the committee’s review of the Trump-Russia investigation to be made public, alleging the memo proved anti-Trump bias by investigators inside the Department of Justice (DOJ).

Most of the memo revolves around the dossier compiled by ex-British spy Christopher Steele. Here are the key takeaways from the document.

The Russia investigation was underway before the Steele dossier: The FBI counterintelligence investigation began in July 2016, “trigger[ed]” by an Australian diplomat’s concern regarding remarks from Trump adviser George Papadopoulos. The New York Times reported in December that Papadopoulos said in private conversations during 2016 that he was contacting Russia to obtain “political dirt on Hillary Clinton.” The memo confirms this sparked the beginning of the Russia investigation.

The DOJ relied on the Steele dossier for FISA warrants: The Trump dossier, written by Steele and reported publicly by BuzzFeed last January, “formed an essential part” of the application for a FISA warrant into Trump adviser Carter Page. The FBI and DOJ were aware that the document was political opposition research, but they did not make that known in their application.

The FISA warrant relied on circular news reports: To corroborate the Steele dossier, the DOJ cited news reports that were based on Steele’s research. “The Carter Page FISA application also cited extensively a September 23, 2016, Yahoo News article by Michael Isikoff, which focuses on Page’s July 2016 trip to Moscow,” the GOP memo says. “This article does not corroborate the Steele dossier because it is derived from information leaked by Steele himself to Yahoo News.” (Emphasis original).

Steele was paid and fired by the FBI: The FBI offered monetary compensation to Steele in exchange for the same research that Democrats were paying. The FBI terminated this relationship when the ex-spy was caught leaking damaging Trump information to the media. The memo notes that Steele had been doing this for months.

Steele held a deep anti-Trump bias: The ex-spy told DOJ official Bruce Ohr that he “was desperate that Donald Trump not get elected and was passionate about him not being president.” The memo notes that Fusion GPS, Steele’s employer, also employed Ohr’s wife at the time to do opposition research on Trump during the 2016 campaign. The Democratic National Committee and the Clinton campaign paid for this research.

The FBI has warned it has “grave concerns” about the memo, over “material omissions.” Democrats, for their part, claim the GOP-led memo doesn’t tell the full story.

Read the full memo here.

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