During the Obama administration, FISA warrant applications usually went to FBI Deputy General Counsel Trisha Anderson to review.
If she approved the application, it was then sent to her superiors for their approval.
In the case of the application for a FISA warrant to spy on Carter Page, the application initially circumvented Anderson.
By the time she saw the application, it has already been approved by then FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe and then Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates.
The FISA warrant also reviewed line-by-line by then General Counsel Jim Baker.
Washington Examiner – Ex-FBI lawyer: Carter Page FISA application approved in ‘unusual’ way by McCabe, Yates, and Baker – A former top lawyer for the FBI described to lawmakers the “unusual” way the surveillance request targeting former Trump campaign associate Carter Page was handled by top leadership at the Justice Department and FBI, according to a transcript released this week.
In front of a joint session of the House Judiciary and Oversight committees on Aug. 31, 2018, former FBI Deputy General Counsel Trisha Anderson said she was normally responsible for signing off on Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act applications before they reached the desk of her superiors for approval. Anderson said the “linear path” those applications typically take was upended in October 2016, with FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe and Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates signing off on the application before she did. Because of that unusual high-level involvement, she didn’t see the need to “second guess” the FISA application.
The Page FISA application was filed by the Justice Department and FBI with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court in October 2016. A surveillance warrant was granted and three renewals were subsequently approved. The FISA application relied heavily on unverified research in British ex-spy Christopher Steele’s dossier on President Trump’s ties to Russia, which was compiled through his employment with opposition research firm Fusion GPS with funding from the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee through the Perkins Coie law firm…
It seems that the only thing ‘usual’ about the FISA warrant to spy on Carter Page was that Democrats seemed to resort to illegal and unethical means in order to obtain the warrant.
I still believe that ALL of the indictments and convictions resulting from the Mueller probe should be tossed out.
The Mueller probe was based upon the unverified and inaccurate Steele report that was paid for by the DNC and Hillary Clinton campaign.
Just like in any other court case, if the prosecution has obtained evidence illegally, any and all resulting convictions are overturned and the accused person set free, pending OTHER evidence.
If I was Manafort’s attorney, that’s what I would be arguing to the courts.
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.