Well this is troubling on many levels. According to a responsive filing from the FISA Court (full pdf below), there wasn’t any hearing on the sketchy FISA application submitted by the DOJ/FBI to conduct FISA Title-1 surveillance on Carter Page.
Even more disturbing, according to the secret court, it is customary to just accept and review the FISA applications as presented without judicial inquiry into the content.
(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch today announced that in response to a Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit, the Justice Department (DOJ) admitted in a court filing last night that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court held no hearings on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) spy warrant applications targeting Carter Page, a former Trump campaign part-time advisor who was the subject of four controversial FISA warrants. (read more)
Here’s the full response from the court:
As disturbing as this appears, this might actually begin to answer many of the questions we have carried surrounding the entire Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act process.
Back in April 2017 Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, declassified a FISA court ruling that had/has massive potential implications. The 99-page ruling, written by FISA Court Presiding Judge Rosemary Collyer, outlined structural issues and admissions by the DOJ and FBI about violations of search queries within the NSA and FBI database.
The term “contractors” is opaque in the ruling, and there are hundreds of redactions protecting the names of the individuals and groups who participated in the unauthorized searches.
The “unauthorized access” was primarily driven by contractors who had access to the information database and were using it in 2015 and 2016. According to the report over 85% of searches conducted were “unauthorized” abuses of the system. DOJ-NSD head John Carlin resigned in 2016 immediately after informing the court.
Not a single congressional hearing has ever questioned the FISA-702(16)(17) search issues. Not a single question to a single witness, specifically Comey or Yates, was ever asked them about the DOJ-NSD and FBI abuse of the FISA database.
The origin of almost all of the corruption seems to consistently circle back to the abuse of the FBI and NSA database which is very much documented and never subject to being refuted. Yet for some reason I cannot fathom, the historic FISA surveillance/search abuse issue is never brought up by anyone, any investigative authority, in any aspect of this ongoing storyline.
It all starts with abuses of the FISA system for political opposition research; yet we never hear a single voice calling attention to the DOJ-NSD and FBI abuse of this system.
Well, Sharyl Attkisson has an idea that might explain why. (prompted, just hit play):