An interesting discussion between Representative John Ratcliffe, former congressman Trey Gowdy and Fox News Host Jason Chaffetz surrounding: the pending Inspector General Report into FISA abuse; the upcoming Mueller testimony; and the activity of U.S. Attorney John Durham.
Within the interview Ratcliffe notes he has recently spoken to Inspector General Horowitz about the timing of his upcoming report where Ratcliffe says the “investigative work is complete”. WATCH:
If previous reports of Christopher Steele being willing to speak to U.S. authorities about his dossier work in 2016 are accurate; and if Horowitz has completed his investigative work; then it’s likely Horowitz has already interviewed Steele.
The IG FISA investigation began in May of 2018, approximately 14 months ago. The assembly of the investigative details into a draft report should be expected to take about four to six weeks depending on the OIG referencer team and the scale of the summary documentation assembled.
However, a concerning aspect to Ratcliffe’s comments surrounds the 20% of the report stated to be “classified”. I am very suspicious of this statement.
One of the hopeful objectives projected upon President Trump granting AG Bill Barr the authority to declassify information, was the possibility this would allow AG Barr to remove the classification concerns within the IG report. If 20% is indeed classified, those projected hopes are considerably diminished and we should modify expectations accordingly.
One of the most consistent tools used by the DOJ and FBI to bury their institutional corruption has been the use of classification to hide damaging material. While the information from Ratcliffe is obviously limited it sounds like the DOJ and FBI will have an opportunity to continue hiding information.
Once a draft report is prepared, cited and referenced, the draft will then undergo an administrative review – that’s the troublesome phase. The administrative review is where the prior IG reports seemed to be shaped to protect the interests of the institutions under Rod Rosenstein, Robert Mueller and Christopher Wray.
The administratively approved draft report is then re-checked by the referencer to insure the notations of fact are accurately cited. Then the draft report is usually sent to the principals outlined in the report, and they are given approximately two weeks to provide feedback.
The principals must sign non-disclosure agreements prior to being allowed to review the draft. However, the public will likely know when this part is happening because while the principals cannot divulge the details the identified participants will make public comments about the report, and publicly begin to position their defenses.
If the principals provide feedback or counter opinion as to the substance of the report content the IG may allow those points to be included in the final report. Usually if the IG adds counter-points in the report the IG will also note material as to why those counterpoints may or may not hold merit.
The draft, the principal responses, the counter-points and all of the reference material is then assembled into a final report that is submitted to the DOJ Attorney General; and in this case, likely the FBI Director. The AG will then make the report public.
Depending on the scale of the investigation and all of the participating departments a rough estimate for final public report would be eight weeks +/- from the conclusion of the investigative phase.
Roughly four weeks for draft assembly and referencer check; two to four weeks for administrative review; another two weeks for principal review/feedback; another week or so for IG counter-points and additional reference citations; and then AG review of final report before release.
If Ratcliffe is accurate; and considering we don’t know when the investigative phase actually concluded; the most likely public release date (just an estimate based on historical IG reporting) would be the end of August or early September.
Here’s the list of material possible for declassification. This was the original list as outlined in 2018:
- All versions of the Carter Page FISA applications (DOJ) (FBI) (ODNI).
- All of the Bruce Ohr 302’s filled out by the FBI. (FBI) (ODNI)
- All of Bruce Ohr’s emails (FBI) (DOJ) (CIA) (ODNI). All supportive documents and material provided by Bruce Ohr to the FBI. (FBI)
- All relevant documents pertaining to the supportive material within the FISA application. (FBI) (DOJ-NSD ) (DoS) (CIA) (DNI) (NSA) (ODNI);
- All intelligence documents that were presented to the Gang of Eight in 2016 that pertain to the FISA application used against U.S. person Carter Page; including all intelligence documents that may not have been presented to the FISA Court. (CIA) (FBI) (DOJ) (ODNI) (DoS) (NSA) Presumably this would include the recently revealed State Dept Kavalac email; and the FBI transcripts from wiretaps of George Papadopoulos (also listed in Carter Page FISA). [AKA ‘Bucket Five’]
- All unredacted text messages and email content between Lisa Page and Peter Strzok on all devices. (FBI) (DOJ) (DOJ-NSD) (ODNI)
- The originating CIA “EC” or two-page electronic communication from former CIA Director John Brennan to FBI Director James Comey that started Operation Crossfire Hurricane in July 2016. (CIA) (FBI) (ODNI)
Additionally, since the 2018 list was developed, more information has surfaced about underlying material. This added to the possibility of documents for declassification:
♦ President Trump can prove the July 31st, 2016, Crossfire Hurricane counterintelligence operation originated from a scheme within the intelligence apparatus by exposing the preceding CIA operation that created the originating “Electronic Communication” memo. Declassify that two-page “EC” document that Brennan gave to Comey. [The trail is found within the Weissmann report and the use of Alexander Downer – SEE HERE]
♦ Release and declassify all of the Comey memos that document the investigative steps taken by the FBI as an outcome of the operation coordinated by CIA Director John Brennan in early 2016. [The trail was memorialized by James Comey – SEE HERE]
♦ Reveal the November 2015 through April 2016 FISA-702 search query abuse by declassifying the April 2017 court opinion written by FISC Presiding Judge Rosemary Collyer. Show the FBI contractors behind the 85% fraudulent search queries. [Crowdstrike? Fusion-GPS? Nellie Ohr? Daniel Richman?] This was a weaponized surveillance and domestic political spying operation. [The trail was laid down in specific detail by Judge Collyer – SEE HERE]
♦ Subpoena former DOJ-NSD (National Security Division) head John Carlin, or haul him in front of a grand jury, and get his testimony about why he hid the abuse from the FISA court in October 2016; why the DOJ-NSD rushed the Carter Page application to beat NSA Director Admiral Mike Rogers to the FISA court; and why Carlin quit immediately thereafter.
♦ Prove the Carter Page FISA application (October 2016) was fraudulent and based on deceptions to the FISA Court. Declassify the entire document, and release the transcripts of those who signed the application(s); and/or depose those who have not yet testified. The creation of the Steele Dossier was the cover-up operation. [SEE HERE]
♦ Release all of the Lisa Page and Peter Strzok text messages without redactions. Let sunlight pour in on the actual conversation(s) that were taking place when Crossfire Hurricane (July ’16) and the FISA Application (Oct ’16) were taking place. The current redactions were made by the people who weaponized the intelligence system for political surveillance and spy operation. This is why Page and Strzok texts are redacted!
♦ Release all of Bruce Ohr 302’s, FBI notes from interviews and debriefing sessions, and other relevant documents associated with the interviews of Bruce Ohr and his internal communications. Including exculpatory evidence that Bruce Ohr may have shared with FBI Agent Joseph Pientka. [And get a deposition from this Pientka fella] Bruce Ohr is the courier, carrying information from those outside to those on the inside.
♦ Release the August 2nd, 2017, two-page scope memo provided by DAG Rod Rosenstein to special counsel Robert Mueller to advance the fraudulent Trump investigation, and initiate the more purposeful obstruction of justice investigation. Also Release the October 20th, 2017, second scope memo recently discovered. The Scope Memos are keys to unlocking the underlying spy/surveillance cover-up. [SEE HERE and SEE HERE]
It would appear the Rosenstein scope memos, Kavalec memo about contact with Chris Steele, original FISA application of Carter Page and transcript of Papadopoulos conversation with Halper etc, could be released without impeding John Durham.
Worth noting there is likely no grand jury currently seated to review material. If there was a grand jury seated Durham would be conducting an investigation, and not a “review“. Additionally, if Durham was conducting an ‘investigation‘ he would be a material witness to the evidence he is discovering. It’s doubtful AG Barr would want Durham to be a witness; he’d likely prefer him to be a prosecuting attorney (just a guess).
The Inspector General report on FISA abuse was reportedly delayed due to the angle of interviewing Christopher Steele. Given the nature of this aspect; and considering the process for a report assembly after investigation all the way to release (a minimum of a month or more); it is highly unlikely we will see the IG report until August or September 2019… which triggers suspicions of the proverbial DC can-kicking process.
It is interesting how Special Counsel Robert Mueller could efficiently move from investigations to indictments, to court cases and pleadings, through to jury trials and convictions within a year…. Yet the full weight of the DOJ can’t complete an investigation of corrupt internal behavior in multiple years.
Perhaps the inefficiency is an institutional feature, not a flaw. Or perhaps we will all be pleasantly surprised.