VA. teen charged after opening fire on parents

Picture of wanted poster of Levi Henry Norwood. (Fauquier County Sheriff’s Department)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 12:46 PM PT — Sunday, February 16, 2020

A manhunt for a Virginia teen, accused of opening fire on his family, has come to an end. 17-year-old Levi Norwood was taken into custody in North Carolina Saturday evening.

Norwood allegedly shot his parents and younger brother in Fauquier County on Friday. The mother and child were killed in their home. The father, however, survived after entering the house and seeing his wife and child dead. That’s when the teen shot him as well, but he managed to escape with gunshot wounds.

Norwood fled the scene in a red Toyota Camry, but he was later apprehended after being caught shoplifting in the next state over.

There was a large operation underway across different departments to take the teen into custody.

“When they reported to the scene, they observed a 6-year-old child that had been killed, the mother of the child, and also the father had been shot as well,” stated sheriff Bob Mosier of Fauquiier County. “He’s (the father) in stable condition at the hospital.”

Norwood is facing two-counts of murder. A motive for the attack remains under investigation.

RELATED: DNA Evidence Exonerates Calif. Man Of 1985 Murder Conviction

Original Article

OneUnited Bank doubles down after criticism over its Harriet Tubman debit card

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 6:45 AM PT — Saturday, February 15, 2020

The largest black-owned bank in the U.S. is facing criticism over its Black History Month debit card. This week, OneUnited Bank released their limited-edition debit cards, which featured Harriet Tubman seemingly posing with the ‘Wakanda forever’ salute from the film “Black Panther.”

The move has since caused a major debate on social media.

The bank’s president said the gesture was meant to represent the sign for ‘love’ in American Sign Language.

“The hand gesture people are commenting about, that is the sign language gesture for ‘love,’” she said. “It is to represent not only love of yourself, but love of our community.”

Despite this explanation, criticism continues to swirl online. However, the bank has said it will stand by the design, claiming the image conveys a very positive message.

Original Article

After Trump’s 9th Circuit pick confirmed, Biden warns of 2nd term ‘death grip’ on federal courts: report

closeFox News Flash top headlines for Dec. 11Video

Fox News Flash top headlines for Dec. 11

Fox News Flash top headlines for Dec. 11 are here. Check out what's clicking on Foxnews.com

While Democrats in Congress have been conducting impeachment hearings in recent weeks, President Trump has been filling judicial vacancies in the federal court system at a rapid clip – and that appears to have potential 2020 opponent Joe Biden worried.

“Look at how the federal court system is changing,” Biden told a group in Las Vegas on Tuesday night, according to a reporter for ABC News. “Four more years of the same kind of appointments, you’re going to see a court system that is fundamentally, for two generations, locked in a way that’s a death grip that does not make any sense.

“It’s as if Robert Bork would be the chief justice, God rest his soul,” Biden added, referring to the Ronald Reagan Supreme Court nominee whose appointment Democrats blocked in 1987. Bork died in 2012 at age 85.

TRUMP NOMINATES WAVE OF CALIFORNIA JUDGES, IN FRESH BID TO RESHAPE COURTS

In a 53-40 vote Tuesday, the U.S. Senate confirmed Trump appointee Patrick Bumatay, a San Diego federal prosecutor, to a seat on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, making him the 49th circuit appointee to be confirmed under the Trump administration, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported.

Trump was able to get Bumatay confirmed to the San Francisco-based court despite opposition to the nomination from California’s two Democratic U.S. senators, Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris.

Bumatay, 41, a son of Filipino immigrants, is openly gay and is raising twin daughters with his husband, the newspaper reported.

The Senate is expected to vote on another 9th Circuit nominee — Lawrence Van Dyke, a former solicitor general for Nevada – on Wednesday, potentially giving Trump another appointee on the traditionally liberal-leaning court, the Union-Tribune reported.

TRUMP-SHAPED 9TH CIRCUIT HANDS WHITE HOUSE MAJOR WIN ON ASYLUM POLICY

When the Senate confirmed a Trump pick for the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in late November, that court became the third to shift to a Republican-appointed majority since the president took office in January 2017.

In an 80-15 vote, the Senate confirmed Barbara Lagoa to the 11th Circuit seat previously held by Judge Stanley Marcus, a Clinton appointee who sat on the appeals court that handles cases from Florida, Georgia and Alabama since 1997.

Trump administration secures another judicial victoryVideo

Lagoa, the first Cuban-American woman confirmed to the 11th Circuit, tilted that court, which was previously split between six Republican appointees and six Democratic appointees, to a GOP-appointed majority.

Trump's nominees alone now hold five of the 12 seats on the 11th Circuit.

During the previous week, confirmation of Steven Menashi, Trump’s pick for the 2nd Circuit, flipped that court to a Republican majority.

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Trump has also flipped the 3rd Circuit.

Lagoa was Trump's 48th nominee confirmed to a circuit court seat, giving the president double the number of circuit judges then-President Barack Obama had gotten through by the same point in his presidency, according to a count by the Heritage Foundation.

Fox News’ Tyler Olson contributed to this story.

Original Article

McConnell bashed by Dems for delaying USMCA vote until after impeachment trial

closeNancy Pelosi: 'No question' USMCA 'much better than NAFTA'Video

Nancy Pelosi: 'No question' USMCA 'much better than NAFTA'

Speaker Nancy Pelosi discusses the USMCA negotiations

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., took fire from House Democrats on Tuesday after saying he will wait until after President Trump's impeachment trial is over before bringing the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) to the Senate floor for a vote.

USMCA would replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which went into effect in 1994 under former President Bill Clinton. Trump has been an outspoken advocate of the new pact and has publicly pushed for House Democrats to hold a final vote.

McConnell announced his decision shortly after House Democrats said they'd reached an agreement with the White House on how to proceed.

"We will not be doing USMCA in the Senate between now and next week," McConnell said at a Capitol Hill news conference. "That will happen… right after the [impeachment] trial is finished in the Senate."

TRUMP CALLS ARTICLES OF IMPEACHMENT 'WEAK' AND ONLY REASON DEMS AGREED TO USMCA

A spokesman for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., criticized McConnell's stance and said he has no legitimate reason for delaying the Senate vote, claiming each chamber could approve the measure simultaneously.

“The House and Senate passed Korea, Panama and Colombia trade agreements on the same day. Senator McConnell has no excuse not to bring up the USMCA," the spokesman said.

Fox News reached out to McConnell's office for comment and was told that the Majority Leader does not view his decision as a delay. His office referred Fox News to the rules under the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), which state that the Senate can take up to 30 days to consider the House bill.

"The Senate Finance Committee must report the bill no later than 15 session days after the House passes the bill," the Senate Republican Policy Committee website states. "If the Finance Committee fails to report the bill, it is automatically placed on the Senate calendar for a vote. The full Senate vote must take place within 15 session days after report or discharge to the floor."

TRUMP, AT PENNSYLVANIA RALLY, SAYS 'STUPID' IMPEACHMENT INDIRECTLY LED TO USMCA DEAL

McConnell's office also pointed to a September op-ed co-authored by the majority leader in support of USMCA and said it was ironic for House Democrats to accuse the GOP of delaying the legislation.

"The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement is unambiguously a win for America. It would create new jobs, expand export markets, strengthen protections for workers and generate billions of dollars in new prosperity," McConnell wrote at the time. "The USMCA would also help keep North American partners close while the U.S. hangs tough with China."

Trump addressed the drama during a campaign rally in the swing state of Pennsylvania on Tuesday and claimed Democrats are only supporting USMCA to take the focus off their failed impeachment attempt.

"The silver lining of impeachment and this witch hunt, that's the reason they approved USMCA," he said. “They were very embarrassed by it."

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House Democrats are reportedly planning to hold a vote on USMCA sometime next week.

Original Article

Andrew Yang qualifies for next debate after release of new poll

closeYang: Our message is reaching the American people beyond the debatesVideo

Yang: Our message is reaching the American people beyond the debates

2020 Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang reacts to his debate performance on 'Fox News @ Night.'

Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang stands at 4 percent in a new national poll released Tuesday by Quinnipiac University — which means the first-time candidate and tech-entrepreneur has qualified to take the stage at next week’s sixth Democratic presidential primary debate.

Meanwhile, former Vice President Joe Biden leads with 29 percent support in the poll, with Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont at 21 percent. Biden jumped 5 percentage points and Sanders climbed 4 points from Quinnipiac’s previous national poll in the Democratic nomination race, which was released late last month.

YANG DIPLOMATICALLY RESPONDS TO AOC'S 'FREEDOM DIVIDEND' CRITICISM

Prior to the release of the new survey, Yang’s campaign had said it remained one poll shy of reaching the thresholds to make the stage at the Dec. 19 showdown.

Candidates must reach at least 4 percent in four surveys recognized as qualifying polls by the Democratic National Committee (DNC), or 6 percent in two polls in the early voting states of Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina. Yang has already reached the other qualifying criteria — receiving contributions from at least 200,000 individual donors.

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii still remains one poll shy of qualifying for the debate. She grabbed the support of 2 percent in the new Quinnipiac University survey among Democrats and independents who lean toward the Democratic Party.

On Monday, Gabbard announced that she wouldn’t attend the debate even if she qualifies. The candidate said instead, she’ll meet with voters in New Hampshire and South Carolina.

Candidates have until the end of Thursday to reach the polling and donor thresholds. The Democratic National Committee will wait unit after the deadline to officially announce which White House hopefuls have qualified for the debate.

By qualifying, Yang, an Asian-American, becomes the first non-Caucasian candidate to make the debate stage.

BUTTIGIEG SUPPORT DROPS IN NEW QUINNIPIAC POLL

Sen. Kamala Harris — one of three black candidates running for the Democratic nomination — had qualified, but the California senator last week ended her bid for the White House. The lack of a non-white candidate on the debate stage from a field that, at its zenith, was arguably the most racially diverse in history raised concerns with some voters.

Yang — once the longest of long-shots who has seen his campaign surge to middle tier status thanks in part to his promise of a $1,000-per-month Freedom Dividend payment to all adults — has qualified for all of the Democratic primary debates.

Meanwhile, Sen. Elizabeth Warren from Massachusetts stands at 15 percent in the new poll, basically unchanged from last month. South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg plunged from 16 percent support in last month’s poll to 9 percent.

“This is the first time Biden has had a double-digit lead since August, and Sanders' best number since June. While Warren's numbers seem to have stabilized, Buttigieg's numbers have dipped," Quinnipiac University Polling Analyst Tim Malloy said.

BLOOMBERG'S MASSIVE AD BLITZ SO FAR NOT BUYING THE LOVE OF PRIMARY VOTERS

Former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg grabbed 5 percent support in the Quinnipiac survey. The multi-billionaire business and media mogul, who declared his candidacy two and a half weeks ago, also stood at 5 percent in a Monmouth University national poll that was also released on Tuesday.

Besides Yang and Gabbard, Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota stood at 3 percent. No other candidate in the still-large field of Democratic White House hopefuls topped 1 percent.

The poll also indicates that Biden, Sanders, Warren, Bloomberg and Buttigieg each with upper to middle single-digit advantages over President Trump in hypothetical 2020 general election matchups.

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The Quinnipiac University poll was conducted from Wednesday to Monday, with 1,533 registered voters nationwide questioned by live telephone operators. The survey includes 665 Democratic voters and independent voters who lean Democratic, with a margin of error of plus or minus 3.8 percentage points.

Original Article

Lisa Page sues FBI and DOJ, citing ‘cost of therapy’ after Trump mocked her salacious text messages

closeWhy is former FBI lawyer Lisa Page choosing to speak out about text messages now?Video

Why is former FBI lawyer Lisa Page choosing to speak out about text messages now?

Reaction from investigative reporter John Solomon and 'The Plot Against the President' author Lee Smith.

Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page is suing the FBI and Department of Justice, alleging that the government's publication of her salacious text messages with anti-Trump ex-FBI agent Peter Strzok constituted a breach of the Federal Privacy Act.

In the complaint filed Tuesday, the 39-year-old Page said she suffered numerous damages, including a "permanent loss of earning capacity due to reputational damage" and "the cost of therapy to cope with unwanted national media exposure and harassment" caused by the disclosure.

Page's complaint also sought reimbursement for "the cost of childcare during and transportation to multiple investigative reviews and appearances before Congress," the "cost of paying a data-privacy service to protect her personal information," and attorney's fees.

On Dec. 12, 2017, Page said in the complaint, "DOJ and/or FBI officials disclosed" her sensitive text messages "directly to a select group of reporters to ensure they would become public." Page alleged that after discovery, she would be able to prove that senior officials knew they were violating the law, and that their conduct was "willful and intentional."

Among those texts was a July 2016 message in which Page wrote to Strzok, “She [Hillary Clinton] just has to win now. I’m not going to lie, I got a flash of nervousness yesterday about Trump.” Within days, the FBI began investigating then-candidate Trump's alleged connections to Russia.

And, after Trump made a joke at a presidential debate concerning his hand size, Page wrote, "This man cannot be president." Strzok, meanwhile, called Trump a “douche," mocked Trump supporters, and said he was "scared."

Page's lawsuit lamented that Trump's tweets about Page's texts "have been retweeted and favorited millions of times." Trump, Page went on, has "targeted" her "by name in more than 40 tweets and dozens of interviews, press conferences, and statements from the White House, fueling unwanted media attention that has radically altered her day-to-day life."

She argued that federal law prevents agencies from disclosing personal records about individuals "unless an exception applies or the individual who is the subject of the record consents in writing to the disclosure."

Page's lawsuit claimed that there was no public-interest justification for the government's leak, given that DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz was already reviewing the texts and later found "no evidence of bias affecting investigative decisions it reviewed, including matters in which Ms. Page was involved." Page asserted that the government leakers were trying to gain favor with Trump.

STRZOK'S WIFE FOUND EVIDENCE OF HIS AFFAIR WITH LISA PAGE … AND 'PARANOID' NEW YORK AGENT FOUND STRZOK WAS APPARENTLY SLOW-WALKING WEINER LAPTOP REVIEW, FILING SAYS

However, Horowitz noted in an initial report last year that Strzok and Page's anti-Trump texts were "not only indicative of a biased state of mind but, even more seriously, implies a willingness to take official action to impact the presidential candidate’s electoral prospects." He did not conclude definitively that Page and Strzok's actions were free from bias — only that he did not have evidence to tie bias to specific investigative actions.

In a separate bombshell report issued Monday, Horowitz extensively faulted the FBI's secretive efforts to surveil a former Trump aide, which involved both Page and Strzok.

Earlier this month, as part of its effort to reject Strzok's request for reinstatement at the FBI, the DOJ outlined evidence that Strzok's wife had obtained his phone, and discovered he and Page were having an extramarital affair. The DOJ argued that the information was relevant because Strzok had conducted FBI business on iMessage on his personal electronic devices, but insisted his phone was secure and that he had "double deleted" sensitive materials on his phone.

Do anti-Trump text messages between Peter Strzok and Lisa Page rise to the level of treason?Video

"[My wife] has my phone. Read an angry note I wrote but didn't send you. That is her calling from my phone. She says she wants to talk to [you]. Said we were close friends nothing more," one of Strzok's text to Page read, according to the DOJ's filing.

"Your wife left me a vm [voicemail]," Page wrote back to Strzok. "Am I supposed to respond? She thinks we're having an affair. Should I call and correct her understanding? Leave this to you to address?"

Strzok then wrote, "I don't know. I said we were […] close friends and nothing more. She knows I sent you flowers, I said you were having a tough week."

Strzok's wife also found photographs and a hotel reservation "ostensibly" used for a "romantic encounter," the government said.

Page's suit will likely face an immediate challenge from the government. The Supreme Court has previously ruled that suits against the government under the Privacy Act for mental and emotional distress are not immune from the doctrine of sovereign immunity, which limits the right of individuals to sue the federal government.

LISA PAGE BREAKS SILENCE, ACCUSES TRUMP OF MIMICKING HER ORGASM

Her lawsuit does not contain an apology for her conduct, and she has long maintained that her anti-Trump views — which she shared with Strzok using FBI phones even as the two played key roles in the Hillary Clinton and Russia probes — did not affect her official duties.

However, as the FBI was preparing to interview Clinton at her home at the close of the email probe, Page sent Strzok a text message that suggested she was concerned about the political impact of the investigation.

Trump allies and critics promote favorable conclusions from DOJ inspector general reportVideo

“One more thing: She might be our next president,” Page wrote to Strzok on Feb. 24, 2016. “The last thing you need us going in there loaded for bear. You think she’s going to remember or care that it was more [DOJ] than [FBI]?”

“Agreed…,” Strzok responded.

Earlier this month, Page spoke exclusively to The Daily Beast in a highly sympathetic profile authored by Molly Jong-Fast, who called Strzok "hawt" in a tweet last year. In the interview, Page said Trump's open mockery of her conduct had forced her to confront the president publicly.

WATCH REP. GOHMERT UNLOAD ON ‘SMIRKING’ STRZOK: ‘HOW MANY TIMES DID YOU LOOK SO INNOCENT INTO YOUR WIFE’S EYES AND LIE TO HER?’

“Honestly, his demeaning fake orgasm was really the straw that broke the camel’s back," Page told The Daily Beast.

In a rally, Trump had passionately read from Strzok and Page's text messages — even screaming out, "I love you, Lisa! I love you so much! Lisa, she's going to win one-hundred-million-to-nothing. But just in case she doesn't win, we've got an insurance policy!" Conservative commentators have disputed that Trump was mimicking an orgasm.

Strzok, a veteran counterintelligence agent who led FBI investigations into Clinton’s use of a private email server and ties between the Trump campaign and Russia, was removed from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team after his anti-Trump texts with Page came to light. He was fired from the FBI last August.

Page left the FBI in May 2018.

Original Article

Ex-spy Christopher Steele surfaces after FISA report challenges Trump dossier research

closeDOJ inspector general's report on alleged FISA abuse finds FBI performance failures, no political biasVideo

DOJ inspector general's report on alleged FISA abuse finds FBI performance failures, no political bias

Michael Horowitz investigated the origins of the FBI probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election and the subsequent surveillance of the Trump presidential campaign; David Spunt reports.

Former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele, in a rare public statement, hit back Tuesday after the Justice Department inspector general’s report questioned the reliability of the anti-Trump dossier that served as the basis for Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants against Trump campaign official Carter Page.

In a statement obtained by Fox News, Steele attorneys Robert Weinberg and Joshua Shiffrin accused DOJ Inspector General (IG) Michael Horowitz's office of including “serious errors and misstatements” in their report.

They also criticized the IG for including previously redacted “negative information about Christopher Steele” without giving them an opportunity to review, while saying their client "gave extensive testimony in person and by Skype" for the investigation.

FISA REPORT DROPS: 7 TAKEAWAYS FROM DOJ WATCHDOG'S RUSSIA PROBE REVIEW

Horowitz’s report, which found there was no political bias in the launch of the FBI’s Trump-Russia probe or in the applications for FISA warrants against Page, did find, however, that there were “significant inaccuracies and omissions” in those applications — specifically related to Steele’s reporting.

One error in the FISA application was the inclusion of a “source characterization statement asserting that Steele’s prior reporting had been ‘corroborated and used in criminal proceedings,’ which overstated the significance of Steele’s past reporting and was not approved by Steele’s handling agent.”

The IG report also said a key Steele “sub-source” raised questions about the reliability of Steele's reporting.

But Steele’s attorneys, who also represent Orbis Business Intelligence where Steele worked, fired back, complaining they were “never given an opportunity to respond to the claims” regarding the sub-source.

The attorneys also sought to clarify who Steele was working for — noting that his election reports were “gathered and written for a private client, Fusion GPS.” The work was funded by the Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton campaign.

The lawyers said Fusion “consented” to “voluntarily sharing the reports with the FBI,” but rejected assertions that he was a confidential source for the bureau.

Steele “was never a Confidential Human Source for the FBI with respect to any matter,” the attorneys said. Weinberg and Shiffrin said the FBI first engaged with their client in 2013 to conduct investigations on the FBI’s behalf, but Orbis and Steele stressed he could not be a CHS "because his obligations to his former government employer prohibited his acting in such a capacity." They said Steele insisted on a basic "contractual relationship."

Carter Page plans on going after FBI agents who spied on himVideo

CLICK TO READ THE IG REPORT

The FBI ultimately cut ties with Steele for an “unauthorized disclosure to the media of his relationship with the FBI,” but his lawyers defended his contacts and said the bureau “never asked” him “not to disclose information to the media.”

The IG report, though, has exposed Steele to even more scrutiny over his unverified dossier. As his lawyers were putting out their statement, Attorney General Bill Barr called the dossier a "sham" during a forum in Washington, D.C.

Meanwhile, the inspector general report found that not only did Steele’s research surrounding the 2016 presidential election provide much of the information used in Page’s FISA warrant application and renewals, but the FBI did not have specific information corroborating allegations against Page from Steele’s reporting.

"We determined that prior to and during the pendency of the FISAs the FBI was unable to corroborate any of the specific substantive allegations against Carter Page contained in the election reporting and relied on in the FISA applications, and was only able to confirm the accuracy of a limited number of circumstantial facts, most of which were in the public domain," the report said, noting that the information confirmed was only timing of events and dates when Page traveled to Russia.

DOJ WATCHDOG FINDS NO BIAS IN LAUNCH OF TRUMP-RUSSIA PROBE, BUT UNCOVERS 'SIGNIFICANT' FBI ERRORS

In addition to the lack of corroboration, the inspector general found that the FBI's interviews of Steele and his sub-sources "revealed potentially serious problems with Steele’s description of information in his election reports." The report stated that the FBI "failed to notify" the Office of Investigations (OI), which was working on the Page FISA applications, "of the potentially serious problems identified with Steele's election reporting that arose as early as January 2017."

IG report finds mistakes but no political bias in FBI bid to spy on Trump campaignVideo

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Horowitz added that "even as the FBI developed this information, we found no evidence that the Crossfire Hurricane team reconsidered its reliance on the Steele reporting in the FISA renewal applications."

Original Article

All eyes on Durham after rebuke of IG Horowitz’s findings

closeHannity: Barr signals Durham report is where all the action will beVideo

Hannity: Barr signals Durham report is where all the action will be

Reports on FISA abuse and Russia origins set to be released, contain major revelations.

In the hours after U.S. Attorney John Durham announced Monday that he did not "agree" with key findings by Justice Department Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz, speculation swirled over what Durham has uncovered in his ongoing review into potential surveillance abuses against President Trump's team.

Durham's inquiry has had a broader scope than Horowitz's, including a focus on foreign actors as well as the CIA, while Horowitz concentrated his attention on the DOJ and FBI.

Additionally, Durham's criminal review has had additional investigative resources not available to Horowitz.

FISA REPORT: DOJ WATCHDOG RELEASES FINDINGS ON RUSSIA PROBE SURVEILLANCE

"Based on the evidence collected to date, and while our investigation is ongoing, last month we advised the Inspector General that we do not agree with some of the report’s conclusions as to predication and how the FBI case was opened," Durham said in his statement, adding that his "investigation is not limited to developing information from within component parts of the Justice Department" and "has included developing information from other persons and entities, both in the U.S. and outside of the U.S."

Still, Horowitz's report offered several clues as to potential avenues that Durham may be pursuing. For example, Horowitz noted that the FBI omitted exculpatory statements by former Trump aide George Papadopoulos in its surveillance warrant application to surveil another ex-Trump aide, Carter Page.

Even though Papadopoulos told a confidential FBI source that "to his knowledge, no one associated with the Trump campaign was collaborating with Russia or with outside groups like Wikileaks in the release of [Clinton/DNC] emails," the FISA application "did not include the statements Papadopoulos made to this [confidential source] that were in conflict with information included in the FISA application."

President Trump says findings from DOJ inspector general's report are far worse than imaginedVideo

Papadopoulos previously told Fox News he was convinced the CIA was behind an "operation" in which he met with two individuals in London in late 2016 who tried to probe whether the Trump campaign had ties to Russia. He later said he would head to Greece to obtain money in a safe from the FBI or CIA that he said was intended to entrap him.

Additionally, according to Horowitz's report, the CIA viewed the dossier from British ex-spy Christopher Steele as an "internet rumor," even though key bureau officials including former FBI Director James Comey sought to include the dossier in its highly sensitive intelligence community assessment on Russian interference, known as the ICA.

The FBI also relied on the dossier to obtain its secret surveillance warrant to surveil Page, and an FBI lawyer told Horowitz that probable cause against Page was "probably 50/50" without the dossier.

Sources previously told Fox News that a late-2016 email chain indicated Comey told bureau subordinates that then-CIA Director John Brennan insisted the dossier be included in the ICA. A Brennan representative pointed the finger back at Comey.

The ultimately successful Page application relied heavily on information from Steele – whose anti-Trump views have been well-documented – and cited Page’s suspected Russia ties. In its warrant application, the FBI inaccurately assured the FISA court on numerous occasions that a Yahoo News article independently corroborated Steele's claims about Page's Russian contacts, and did not clearly state that Steele worked for a firm hired by Hillary Clinton's campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

FORMER TRUMP AIDE HEADS TO GREECE TO RETRIEVE $10G IN A SAFE FROM 'CIA OR FBI'

The FBI told the FISA court it did "not believe that [Steele] directly provided … to the press" information concerning Page. However, Horowitz wrote that he found "no documentation demonstrating that Steele was asked by the FBI whether he was the source of the Yahoo News article disclosure or told the FBI he was not."

And, even after the FBI obtained information that "more strongly indicated that Steele had directly provided information to Yahoo News around the time of the Sept. 23 article," Horowitz found, "no revisions were made to the FBI's assessment, contained in Renewal Application No. 3, that Steele had not directly provided the information to the press."

Separately, Horowitz found that the FBI offered to pay Steele "significantly" for information pertaining to Michael Flynn, Trump's ex-national security advisor who is fighting to overturn his guilty plea on one count of making false statements to the FBI. Flynn, who suffered financial pressures leading up to the guilty plea, has accused the FBI of hiding exculpatory evidence, doctoring key witness reports, and seeking to create a process crime for political reasons.

Much of the Steele dossier has been proved discredited or unsubstantiated, including the dossier's claims that the Trump campaign was paying hackers in the United States out of a non-existent Russian consulate in Miami, or that ex-Trump lawyer Michael Cohen traveled to Prague to conspire with Russians.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller also was unable to substantiate the dossier's claims that Page had received a promise of a large payment relating to the sale of a share of Rosneft, a Russian oil giant, or that a lurid blackmail tape involving the president existed.

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Horowitz's report similarly found no evidence to support that bribery claim, even after a review of text messages from a source cited by the FBI.

Horowitz's report Monday said his investigators found no intentional misconduct or political bias surrounding efforts to launch that 2016 probe and to seek a highly controversial FISA warrant to surveil Page in the early months of the investigation. Still, it found "significant concerns with how certain aspects of the investigation were conducted and supervised."

Fox News' Alex Pappas contributed to this report.

Original Article

Graham slams FBI methods after Horowitz report, says probe plunged into ‘criminal enterprise’

closeSensenbrenner: The 'surveillance state' is out of controlVideo

Sensenbrenner: The 'surveillance state' is out of control

Jim Sensenbrenner, House Judiciary Committee, blasts Adam Schiff and democrats for abusing subpoena power and obtaining the phone records of Republicans and members of the press

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., on Monday slammed the FBI's investigation into President Trump’s 2016 campaign as a “criminal enterprise” that got off the rails.

Graham delivered his remarks during a news conference in which he reacted to the long-awaited review concerning the origins of the Trump-Russia probe.

“Let’s assume for a moment it started out okay. It sure as he– didn’t end okay,” Graham said referring to investigators' efforts to seek a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant to monitor former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page in the early months of the Russia investigation.

“I believe there will be no debate among reasonably minded people, particularly lawyers, about how the system got off the rails, but in my view became a criminal enterprise to defraud the FISA court, to deny American citizen Carter Page his constitutional rights, and to continue an operation against President Trump as president of the United States,” he said.

Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., giving his take on the FISA report during an earlier news conference, said the report put to rest any notion that the FBI’s investigation of Trump’s 2016 campaign was politically motivated.

“This report conclusively debunks the baseless conspiracy that the investigation into Mr. Trump’s campaign and its ties to Russia originated with political bias.”

Schumer again reiterated that the FBI investigation was “valid and without political bias.”

Anticipating that his Republican colleagues will do their “level best to reject the report’s conclusions,” Schumer pointed out that FBI Director Christopher Wray – a Trump appointee – has “already embraced the central findings.”

US ATTORNEY DURHAM OBJECTS TO IG FINDINGS ON RUSSIA PROBE ORIGINS IN STUNNING STATEMENT

He quoted Wray as saying he did not believe the FBI unfairly targeted the Trump campaign.

Schumer also said it was “ironic” that officials including Attorney General William Barr and Graham, who have praised Horowitz in the past, later questioned the report.

“Because the IG issued a report whose conclusions he doesn’t like, Senator Graham ought not to question what he upheld last week,” Schumer said.

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The report listed multiple errors by the FBI in its efforts to obtain a FISA warrant. The IG probe identified at least 17 “significant inaccuracies and omissions” in the Page applications and said a new audit into the FISA process would take place.

Horowitz and his investigators were at times critical of the bureau’s handling of the cast, including for failing to share information that would have undercut claims in those warrants.

Fox News' Ronn Blitzer and Brooke Singman contributed to this report.

Original Article

Comey claims vindication after Horowitz FISA report: ‘So it was all lies’

closePresident Trump says findings from DOJ inspector general's report are far worse than imaginedVideo

President Trump says findings from DOJ inspector general's report are far worse than imagined

Trump speaks after Department of Justice watchdog releases report on Russia investigation.

Former FBI director James Comey seized on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) report findings Monday to claim vindication over the bureau’s handling of the Trump-Russia probe in 2016, saying criticism of the probe “was all lies” — even though the inspector general also faulted the FBI’s handling of surveillance warrants in the report.

DOJ inspector general Michael E. Horowitz’s report, released Monday, said investigators found no intentional misconduct or political bias surrounding efforts to launch that 2016 probe.

“So it was all lies,” Comey tweeted, in an apparent reference to President Trump’s claims that the FBI wrongly investigated his ties to Russia. “No treason. No spying on the campaign. No tapping Trumps wires. It was just good people trying to protect America.”

DURHAM OBJECTS TO IG FINDINGS ON RUSSIA PROBE ORIGINS IN STUNNING STATEMENT

Comey, in his tweet and in a Washington Post op-ed, appeared to downplay the “significant concerns” cited in the report over the bureau’s efforts to seek the highly controversial FISA warrant to monitor former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page in the early months of the investigation. The IG probe identified at least 17 “significant inaccuracies and omissions” in the Page applications and said a new audit into the FISA process would take place.

“Although it took two years, the truth is finally out,” Comey wrote in his op-ed.

Others investigating the origins of the probe were less charitable.

“Based on the evidence collected to date, and while our investigation is ongoing, last month we advised the inspector general that we do not agree with some of the report’s conclusions as to predication and how the FBI case was opened,” U.S. Attorney John Durham said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Attorney General William Barr ripped the FBI’s “intrusive” investigation after the release of Horowitz’s review, saying it was launched based on the “thinnest of suspicions.”

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“The inspector general’s report now makes clear that the FBI launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions that, in my view, were insufficient to justify the steps taken,” Barr said in a statement.

The release came as Washington has been consumed with an impeachment inquiry into President Trump. The House Judiciary Committee was holding the inquiry’s latest hearing Monday, days after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said Democrats were moving forward with plans to bring articles of impeachment against the president over his dealings with Ukraine. The president repeatedly has denied doing anything wrong.

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Nunes looks at legal options after Schiff releases phone records in impeachment inquiry

closeRep. Nunes says he will pursue legal action on release of phone recordsVideo

Rep. Nunes says he will pursue legal action on release of phone records

House Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Devin Nunes on Schiff obtaining phone records.

House Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Devin Nunes, R-Calif., is looking to fight back after Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., subpoenaed and released his phone records in connection with the impeachment inquiry into President Trump.

Nunes on Sunday warned his fellow Republicans that the same thing could happen to them, although he pointed out various legal grounds he was exploring to prevent this from happening again.

"I'm in California, so for sure, state law, you cannot release somebody's phone records. So, for sure, that right has been violated. But, we also have to look at the constitutional aspects of this, and do all the members of Congress have a right to privacy, and can just one member, because he doesn’t like someone and he’s a political opponent of someone, can that member just subpoena records and then release just to embarrass or to create a distraction or to build whatever fantasy-land narrative that they continue to build?"

LINDSEY GRAHAM TORCHES SCHIFF OVER IMPEACHMENT TACTICS: HE 'IS DOING A LOT OF DAMAGE TO THE COUNTRY, AND HE NEEDS TO STOP'

Nunes pushed back against claims that the records were in connection to the Republican trying to get an ambassador fired, insisting that if he wanted to do this, he would be able to call Trump directly, "and I'm quite sure the president would probably listen to me."

One of the individuals linked to Nunes' office through the phone records was Lev Parnas, an associate of Rudy Giuliani who recently was indicted over alleged campaign-finance violations.

Nunes explained how he came to be linked to Parnas. "I got a call from a number that was Parnas' wife. I remember talking to someone and I did what I always do, which is if I don't know who they are, you put them to staff and you let staff work with that person," he said.

Schiff obtains, publicly releases phone records of political opponents and conservative journalistVideo

Nunes noted that his office went through all of their records, and "we have no information from Parnas. We have no documents, we have nothing. We have no emails, so there's nothing that we have in our control from Parnas."

The Republican insisted Democrats were targeting him because "they don't like that we exposed them for the Russia hoax that they were involved in, that's what this is about."

Later in the interview, Nunes addressed the Russia investigation again, in light of the pending release of the report from Justice Department Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz about possible Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act [FISA] abuse by the FBI during the probe.

The report, which is expected to be released Monday, may confirm or refute assertions made by Republicans and Trump regarding the acquisition of a warrant to conduct surveillance of former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

Nunes was at the forefront of the GOP's attack on the FBI's methods, claiming they misrepresented evidence and left out exculpatory information about Page that affected the court's decision to grant the warrant and subsequent renewals.

"They key is whether or not what the House Intelligence Committee Republicans gave to the American people in February of '18, whether or not that was true or not true," Nunes said referring to his claims about possible FBI misconduct. "The additional evidence that Horowitz comes up with, that'll be great for us, because we're really interested if he found the exculpatory evidence that wasn't provided to the FISA court.

"We also want to know if he got to the bottom of the insurance policy. So, we know what the insurance policy is, it's something very specific. We want to know if he got to the bottom of that." This likely was a reference to the mention of an "insurance policy" against Trump that was discussed in text messages between former FBI attorney Lisa Page and agent Peter Strzok, who both worked on the investigation. Strzok was removed from the investigation after his politically charged messages were discovered, and he was fired after a watchdog report found his political leanings could have influenced his work.

Nunes signaled he was not overly eager with anticipation of the upcoming report, noting that it was very limited in scope.

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"He's only looking at FISA abuse. All of that evidence needs to be sent to Durham, the U.S. Attorney from Connecticut." U.S. Attorney John Durham has been tasked with a more comprehensive investigation of the origins of the Russia investigation. Unlike Horowitz, Durham has the authority to file criminal charges.

"That’s ultimately going to be the key," Nunes said, "is, what does Durham find in looking at this entire debacle, which is targeting a political campaign by the FBI and the Department of Justice."

Original Article

Pelosi campaign selling ‘Don’t Mess with Nancy’ shirts after tussle with reporter

closeHow the media covered confrontations involving Nancy Pelosi and Joe BidenVideo

How the media covered confrontations involving Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden

Tempers growing short for two high-profile Democrats; reaction and analysis from Fox News media analyst Howard Kurtz, host of 'Media Buzz.'

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., is trying to use a testy exchange with a reporter to her advantage.

Nancy Pelosi for Congress is selling "Don't Mess with Nancy" crewneck sweatshirts in an apparent attempt to fundraise off the media attention she received after Thursday's press briefing. The Speaker caused an uproar after she told a reporter not to "mess with" her, pushing back on a question about whether she hated the president.

"As a Catholic, I resent your using the word 'hate' in a sentence that addresses me. I don't hate anyone," she told Sinclair reporter James Rosen.

"I was raised in a way that is a heart full of love and always pray for the president. And I still pray for the president. And I pray for the president all the time, so don't mess with me when it comes to words like that."

NANCY PELOSI SNAPS AT REPORTER AFTER QUESTION ABOUT HATING TRUMP: 'DON'T MESS WITH ME'

Rosen, who previously worked for Fox News, denied accusing her of hating the president.

Their exchange was just the latest instance in which Pelosi appeared to try and tell off a reporter. She previously knocked Rosen in November, describing him as "Mr. Republican talking points" after he asked a question about Trump getting the right to confront his accuser in the Ukraine controversy.

The Speaker similarly tried to leverage a viral moment for her benefit. She previously made her Twitter cover photo that of one President Trump tweeted as evidence that she had an "unhinged meltdown" during a meeting in October.

Not everyone was fan of her viral moment. President Trump tweeted that Pelosi looked like she "just had a nervous fit."

NANCY PELOSI REFERS TO REPORTER AS 'MR. REPUBLICAN TALKING POINTS' AFTER WHISTLEBLOWER QUESTION

"She says she 'prays for the President.' I don’t believe her, not even close. Help the homeless in your district, Nancy," he said shortly after Thursday's press briefing.

"Rosen asked best Q which exposed her," Fox News host Laura Ingraham tweeted. "This IS based on hate. Everyone knows it. Pelosi answer was basically 'we don’t hate anyone,' but then called Trump 'a coward.'"

But the Speaker won praise from "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert," which tweeted a video arguing that Trump would do better to call Pelosi "boss."

Ingraham also took issue with Pelosi calling herself a Catholic. The California congresswoman has described herself as a "devout practicing Catholic," identifying with what is perhaps the largest pro-life organization in the world.

But Pelosi has defended congressional funding for Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider, and vowed to defend the landmark abortion legalization case Roe v. Wade with "every tool in our disposal."

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Catholic clergy have repeatedly condemned both the act itself and pro-choice political advocacy. Vatican officials have reportedly said Pelosi should be denied the sacrament of Holy Communion. The Archbishop of San Francisco — where Pelosi's district is located — also reportedly said "no Catholic can dissent in good conscience" from the Church's position on abortion.

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