FBI Director Wray: Obtaining FISA warrant against Carter Page unacceptable

FBI Director Christopher Wray testifies during an oversight hearing of the House Judiciary Committee, on Capitol Hill, Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2020 in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

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UPDATED 8:37 AM PT — Thursday, February 6, 2020

In his first congressional appearance since the release of last year’s Horowitz report, the director of the FBI has assured he’s committed to reforming the FISA system.

On Wednesday, Chris Wray testified before the House Judiciary Committee to highlight the alleged “failures” in the Inspector General report and asserted “they cannot be repeated.” He said he’s already planning to make changes to FISA policies.

“I am adding more than 40, over 40, corrective actions to address all of those things in a way that’s robust and serous,” said Wray. “And we’re determined to learn the lessons from this report and make sure the FBI emerges from this even better and stronger”.

His statements follow the FBI’s investigation into President Trump’s former foreign policy advisor Carter Page over his alleged ties to Russia during 2016 election.

FILE – Carter Page, a foreign policy adviser to Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, speaks with reporters following a day of questions from the House Intelligence Committee, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

However, Republican lawmakers have argued Wray’s testimony makes the FBI agency as a whole appear “untrustworthy.” That’s according to congressman Tom McClintock (R-Calif.), who said the FBI has “lost the trust of an awful lot of Americans.”

Additionally, congressman Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) also suggested Wray’s testimony downplayed activities surrounding the 2016 election and didn’t take the matter seriously.

Back in December, Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz released a report outlining several mistakes made by top FBI agents, including how a warrant was obtained to spy on Page.

In addition to slamming FISA’s’ system, the FBI director also criticized Facebook’s proposed privacy plan, which would restrict the platform’s access to data. If the plan moves forward, Wray believes Americans “will be blinded.” Meanwhile, Facebook has claimed it doesn’t support government attempts to “build backdoors.”

RELATED: DOJ Inspector General says FBI lawyer created fraudulent evidence to keep investigating Carter Page

Original Article

Carter Page files lawsuit against DNC over fake dossier

FILE – In a Nov. 2, 2017, file photo, Carter Page, a foreign policy adviser to Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, speaks with reporters following a day of questions from the House Intelligence Committee, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

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UPDATED 1:52 PM PT — Thursday, January 30, 2020

Carter Page is filing a lawsuit against the DNC over the unverified dossier that launched the Mueller report. The defamation suit was filed on Thursday morning in Illinois and also named law firm Perkins Coie and its partners.

Last week, a federal court confirmed the FISA warrants that allowed Obama era FBI officials to spy on Page were invalid. His lawsuit claimed the DNC, along with its partners, knowingly spread false and unverified information about him to both the FBI and the DOJ through the Steele dossier.

“The defendants’ wrongful actions convinced many Americans that Dr. Page is a traitor to the United States, and as a result he has received — and continues to receive — multiple death threats,” the lawsuit stated. “In short, the defendants’ actions have not only damaged the plaintiffs’ reputations and financial prospects, they have even caused Dr. Page to reasonably fear for his safety.”

This followed the recent IG report, which outlined how the FBI mishandled the situation and led to dozens of corrective actions within the agency.

“We are deeply concerned that so many basic and fundamental errors were made by three separate handpicked investigative teams on one of the most sensitive FBI investigations,” stated the Department of Justice Inspector General. “The circumstances reflect the failure, as we outlined in the report, not just by those who prepared the applications, but also by the managers and supervisors in the crossfire hurricane chain of command, including FBI senior officials who were briefed as the investigation progressed.”

RELATED: Carter Page: I Never Received A Direct Apology

Original Article

Adam Schiff says ‘it’s hard to be sympathetic’ to Carter Page amid FISA abuse revelations

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

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

Former Trump campaign associate Carter Page reacts to IG report on 'Hannity.'

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., is not expressing any remorse for former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, who was swept up in the yearslong Russia investigation.

In an interview clip released on Friday, "Firing Line" host Margaret Hoover read quotes from Page about how the Russia probe had such a negative impact, including how the FBI spying into his life "ruined his good name" and that he will "never completely have his name restored."

"Do you have any sympathy for Carter Page?" Hoover asked.

"I have to say, you know, Carter Page came before our committee and for hours of his testimony, denied things that we knew were true, later had to admit them during his testimony," Schiff responded. "It's hard to be sympathetic to someone who isn't honest with you when he comes and testifies under oath. It's also hard to be sympathetic when you have someone who has admitted to being an adviser to the Kremlin."

WASHINGTON POST MEDIA CRITIC SLAMS CNN FOR KEEPING MCCABE ON PAYROLL AMID FISA ABUSE REVELATIONS: 'CORRUPTING'

"But then was also informing the CIA," Hoover pushed back.

"Yes, yes," Schiff acknowledged.

"Which we didn't know about," the host added.

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The high-ranking Democrat stressed that Page was "apparently both targeted by the KGB" as well as "talking to the United States and its agencies." He also admitted that his ties to the CIA "should have been included" in the highly controversial Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) application process that Page was the subject of.

Earlier this month, DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz uncovered 17 significant errors in the FISA applications the FBI had requested in order to surveil Page.

Original Article

FISA court judge demands info about FBI lawyer linked to Carter Page warrant

closeFISA court orders FBI to fix wiretaps amid IG reportVideo

FISA court orders FBI to fix wiretaps amid IG report

Fox News contributor Sara Carter, American Conservative Union chair Matt Schlapp, and conservative commentator Dinesh D'Souza share their reaction.

The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court’s presiding judge has sent another directive to the Justice Department, ordering officials to identify previous surveillance requests from an FBI lawyer linked to the 2016 warrant from former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

In an order unsealed Friday, Judge Rosemary Collyer asked the Justice Department to identify steps to ensure the accuracy of those filings and whether the unnamed DOJ lawyer was ever disciplined.

DOJ inspector general Michael Horowitz recently identified in a scathing public report numerous mistakes and omissions in the warrant used against Page that launched the FBI investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

FISA COURT SLAMS FBI OVER SURVEILLANCE APPLICATIONS, IN RARE PUBLIC ORDER

Carter Page: There's been no real action to address FISA abuseVideo

The letter unsealed Friday was dated Dec. 5, which was four days before Horowitz’s report was released.

Collyer had earlier this week ordered DOJ to identify by January 10 what steps it was taking to correct problems with the FISA warrant process. The FBI had promised to work with DOJ to comply.

Sources have said the unidentified FBI lawyer in question has since resigned his post, and the Horowitz report said he faces possible criminal prosecution.

In a rare public order earlier this week, Collyer strongly criticized the FBI over its surveillance-application process, giving the bureau until Jan. 10 to come up with solutions, in the wake of findings from Horowitz.

Horowitz said he did not find significant evidence that FBI agents were involved in a political conspiracy to undermine Trump's candidacy in 2016. However, the report did find numerous errors and inaccuracies used by FBI agents to obtain permission to monitor Page's phone calls and emails.

While Collyer's order earlier this week did not specify exactly what reforms the FBI needed to implement to its policies for obtaining permission to wiretap people under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA, the order did say that the FISA court will weigh in on whether the reforms are deemed sufficient.

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The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court deals with some of the most sensitive matters of national security: terror threats and espionage. Its work, for the most part, cannot be examined by the American public, by order of Congress and the president. Its work is mostly secret, and its structure largely one-sided.

It was also revealed Friday that Collyer, who is also a senior judge on the DC federal court, will resign her position as presiding judge on the FISA court at year’s end. Her current term was set to expire in March 2020.

Chief Justice John Roberts will replace Collyer with James Boasberg, a colleague of Collyer on the FISA court and DC federal bench. He was named to the FISA court in 2014 and is one of 11 judges on the rotating FISA court.

Sources say Collyer, 74, is leaving for unspecified personal reasons.

Fox News’ Andrew O’Reilly contributed to this report.

Original Article

Carter Page, on eve of DOJ IG report, says findings will only tell ‘part’ of the story

closeIG Horowitz to release the highly anticipated report on alleged FISA abuseVideo

IG Horowitz to release the highly anticipated report on alleged FISA abuse

Former Trump foreign policy aide Carter Page discusses the anticipated release of Horowitz IG report on potential FISA abuses.

Former Trump adviser Carter Page told Fox News' "Sunday Morning Futures" that the Department of Justice Inspector General (IG) report on alleged FBI surveillance abuses, set to be released on Monday, will only tell "part of the story."

Inspector General Michael Horowitz has found evidence that an FBI lawyer manipulated a key investigative document related to the FBI's secretive surveillance of Page in 2016 and 2017 — enough to change the substantive meaning of the document, according to multiple reports last month.

"I think we'll learn part of the story tomorrow," Page told host Maria Bartiromo. "What I've learned from some of the leakers and one of the papers of record; a top reporter there said there's a lot of exculpatory evidence that's remaining classified, and there's been internal battles."

Page said he "kept getting" calls from reports in the summer of 2016 asking about "totally false" Democrat-funded allegations about his Russia connections.

In its initial 2016 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant application, the FBI flatly called Page "an agent of a foreign power." Page has never been charged with any wrongdoing.

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The ultimately successful Page application relied in part on information from British ex-spy Christopher Steele – whose anti-Trump views are now well-documented – and cited Page’s suspected Russia ties. In its warrant application, the FBI inaccurately assured the FISA court on numerous occasions that media sources independently corroborated Steele's claims, and did not clearly state that Steele worked for a firm hired by Hillary Clinton's campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

Gregg Jarrett: Why the 'fix was in' with Lisa Page and Peter StrzokVideo

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 Carter Page had received 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.

Sources told Fox News in October that U.S. Attorney John Durham's separate, ongoing probe into potential FBI and Justice Department misconduct in the run-up to the 2016 election through the spring of 2017 has transitioned into a full-fledged criminal investigation — and that Horowitz's report will shed light on why Durham's probe has become a criminal inquiry.

Original Article