All President Trump wanted to do today was to let off some steam, fire off a couple satisfying rage-tweets accusing President Obama of trying to undermine him based on a Breitbart report that Stephen Bannon left on his desk, and hit the golf course.
Instead, he inadvertently revealed to the world that there may have been Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant issued against the Trump campaign. By accusing President Obama of “wiretapping” the Trump Tower in October, it appears that previously unconfirmed rumors of the warrant are very real – and the consequences of that are about to get very real for Trump and his treasonous troupe.
A deeply buried detail in today’s New York Times article on the subject has huge implications for Trump and his team:
But a senior White House official said that Donald F. McGahn II, the president’s chief counsel, was working on Saturday to secure access to what Mr. McGahn believed was an order issued by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court authorizing some form of surveillance related to Mr. Trump and his associates.
The official offered no evidence to support the notion that such an order exists. If one does, it would be highly unusual for a White House to order the Justice Department to turn over such an investigative document, given the traditional independence of law enforcement matters.
This is extremely important for two reasons.
Even if it doesn’t exist, the fact that it has spooked the White House enough to go looking for the FISA warrant is an admission of guilt in itself.
If it does exist, as the White House counsel clearly believes it does, it means that three federal judges had enough evidence that Donald Trump’s election campaign was infiltrated by foreign agents to issue a wiretap.
Secondly, it is a huge breach of protocol for the White House to interfere with an ongoing Department of Justice investigation. While not technically illegal, it is extremely unethical for the White House counsel to be meddling in the affairs of the DOJ, especially when the investigation is targeted at members of the current administration.
The White House counsel wants to know who knows what about Donald Trump and his team’s connections to Russian agents to begin planning a cover-up – and how they and the rest of their colleagues can avoid going to prison.
Before it was edited, the New York Times called it “a stunning case of interference.” It is now simply just “highly unusual.” It is unclear why the wording was changed.
McGahn has reportedly told staffers to be very careful moving fwd and let his office handle things, citing classified/legal issues at stake
— Robert Costa (@costareports) March 4, 2017
As of the time of this writing, President Trump is hidden away from the prying eyes of the press with Attorney General Jeff Sessions and White House counsel McGahn, where they will certainly be discussing an investigation that Sessions has supposedly “recused” himself from.
The taint of corruption burns bright in this administration. Every move they take is on defensive as they deny and obfuscate; Trump and his cronies freely flaunt ethical boundaries and long-respected values at every opportunity. If they really had nothing to hide, why are they going to such extraordinary lengths to keep their tracks covered?
We need a special prosecutor and a bipartisan commission to fully investigate President Donald J. Trump, his cabinet, his campaign team to determine if any of them are guilty of treason.
We need to know the truth about their connections to agents of the Russian Federation, whether or not they colluded to subvert the democratic process, and whether or not Trump is being blackmailed by the Russian government.
We need to know why Republicans in Congress have done everything they can to frustrate the investigation by the Justice Department into these allegations and whether or not they are actively working to enable treason.
We need to send a message to the world that this kind of behavior will not be tolerated in the United States of America.
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.