By Jon Dougherty
After enduring more than two years’ worth of deep state attacks on his presidency and assaults on his character that were not only unfounded but entirely political, POTUS Donald Trump late Thursday issued a memo to Attorney General William Barr instructing him to work with federal law enforcement and intelligence agencies to declassify all documents related to the Obama-era “Spygate” scandal.
….during the 2016 Presidential election. The Attorney General has also been delegated full and complete authority to declassify information pertaining to this investigation, in accordance with the long-established standards for handling classified information….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 24, 2019
“The heads of elements of the intelligence community… and the heads of each department or agency that includes an element of the intelligence community shall promptly provide such assistance and information as the Attorney General may request in connection with that review,” said the memo.
“Today, at the request and recommendation of the Attorney General of the United States, President Donald J. Trump directed the intelligence community to quickly and fully cooperate with the Attorney General’s investigation into surveillance activities during the 2016 Presidential election,” added White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement.
“The Attorney General has also been delegated full and complete authority to declassify information pertaining to this investigation, in accordance with the long-established standards for handling classified information. Today’s action will help ensure that all Americans learn the truth about the events that occurred, and the actions that were taken, during the last Presidential election and will restore confidence in our public institutions.”
GOP lawmakers reacted to the president’s decision on various cable news programs Thursday night. During an appearance on Fox News‘ Laura Ingraham program, House Freedom Caucus chairman Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) discussed what he hopes Americans will learn in the coming days and weeks.
“Well, obviously, the beginning of what happened” is one of the most important aspects — how and why the Obama regime decided to spy on the 2016 Trump campaign, Meadows noted.
“But ultimately, what we’re hopeful to see is really…you know, the president has been talking about spying…I personally believe that there were electronic surveillance means that were deployed with Trump associates…I’d like to see those transcripts” or any other evidence that would help explain what went on in the months before the 2016 election, Meadows said.
“You know, [fired FBI Director] James Comey has changed his story a number of times,” Meadows continued. “Originally it was, ‘We didn’t spy and we didn’t wiretap.’ Well, he’s gonna change it again. Now he’s gonna say, ‘Well, we didn’t break the law when we spied and wiretapped,’ because I think the American people will see that very soon.”
The Freedom Caucus chairman said that he also wants to know when Obama-era officials knew that the Trump campaign did not “collude” with Russia, which — he suspects — was at the outset because the entire narrative appears to have been fabricated specifically to justify spying on the president’s campaign.
Meadows says he’s already seen some unclassified documents that that very first Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court warrant to spy on Trump campaign official Carter Page “was predicated on something they knew was false [the infamous “Steele dossier”], and they knew that before they made the application.”
Comey signed off on the first FISA warrant application.
Meadows also pushed back on Democrats’ claims that the president is attempting to destroy the intelligence community.
“He’s trying to restore its reputation,” Meadows noted.
In his memo, POTUS Trump instructed the intelligence community “to promptly provide such assistance and information as the Attorney General may request with” his review of documents.
Trump also noted that the declassification effort, along with an ongoing corruption investigation by U.S. Attorney John Durham, “will show that crimes were committed” by his political opponents.
….Today’s action will help ensure that all Americans learn the truth about the events that occurred, and the actions that were taken, during the last Presidential election and will restore confidence in our public institutions.” @PressSec
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 24, 2019
As we reported Tuesday, The Hill‘s John Solomon told Fox News‘ Sean Hannity that his sources informed him a slew of declassifications were set to begin within days.
In particular, Solomon noted, the president will begin with with the release of “Bucket 5” documents, otherwise known as exculpatory statements the FBI possessed about its targets before agents went to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court to get warrants to spy on them.
He also added that “this is the first time that we know for sure the FBI was in possession of a piece of intelligence from Christopher Steele [author of the infamous ‘Steele Dossier’ used to get a warrant to spy on Page] that had been debunked before they went to the FISA court.”
“Yes, absolutely, I have confirmed that within the next seven to eight days, the president will declassify the first of many documents,” Solomon said. “This first one we used to call ‘Bucket 5,’ the exculpatory statements that the FBI possessed about its targets before it went to the FISA court.”
Let the guilty be held accountable.
- Follow Jon Dougherty on Twitter at @JonDougherty10