Judicial Watch suing FBI for Seth Rich documents

FILE – In this July 12, 2018 file photo, FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok is seated to testify before the the House Committees on the Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform during a hearing on “Oversight of FBI and DOJ Actions Surrounding the 2016 Election,” on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 9:48 AM PT — Thursday, February 20, 2020

Oversight group Judicial Watch is suing the FBI for documents on the case of slain DNC staffer Seth Rich. In a recent statement, the president of the watchdog group, Tom Fitton, said FBI agents were discussing Rich’s murder shortly after it happened in the summer of 2016.

FBI records show former agent Peter Strzok sent an internal email chain about Rich to former FBI lawyer Lisa Page. Fitton also found FBI agents said Rich’s documents may have been mixed-up with an unspecified classified matter.

“We’d asked the FBI for documents, we didn’t get any answer…I think another request shows they had nothing,” he stated. “So we just had to sue for Seth Rich documents.”

“And why do we think the FBI is hiding their records?” asked Fittion. “Because in another case, we found Seth Rich records…one of the officials says ‘I squashed the story with someone’…denying any specific involvement.”

Judicial Watch said its lawsuit comes after the FBI failed to release Seth Rich documents under the Freedom of Information Act.

RELATED: Attorney says FBI had been lying about the murder of Seth Rich

Original Article

McConnell prepares for votes on five judicial nominees after impeachment trial wraps up

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., holds a news conference after the impeachment acquittal of President Donald Trump, at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 6:54 AM PT — Thursday, February 6, 2020

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is ready to move forward, following the end of the impeachment trial. Just minutes after the final impeachment vote Wednesday, Sen. McConnell (R-Ky.) filed motions to hold votes on five of the president’s judicial nominees.

The move included Andrew Brasher to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit. This shows McConnell and the president remain committed to judicial confirmations, which is something the president reaffirmed during his State of the Union address on Tuesday.

“Working with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, thank you Mitch, and his colleagues in the Senate we have confirmed a record number of 187 new federal judges to uphold our Constitution as written,” stated President Trump. “This includes two brilliant new Supreme Court justices; Neil Gorsuch andBbrett Kavanaugh.”

The Republican-led chamber is expected to begin with the confirmation process of Brasher on February 10th before moving on to four District Court nominees.

Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla, questions constitutional scholars during a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee on the constitutional grounds for the impeachment of President Donald Trump, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Meanwhile, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) filed an ethics complaint against House Speaker Nancy Pelosi over her actions during Tuesday’s State of the Union address. He filed the charges with the House Ethics Committee Wednesday.

The Florida congressman has argued that Pelosi’s conduct was beneath the dignity of the House of Representatives and was a potential violation of the law. His complaint refers to Pelosi’s actions when she ripped up the president’s speech.

Rep. Gaetz added, the law does not allow the House speaker to destroy official records. He said “nobody is above the law” and urged that Pelsoi be held accountable for her behavior.

RELATED: House Speaker Pelosi under fire for behavior during the president’s State of the Union address

Original Article

Trump heads into 2020 with ‘historic’ judicial appointments

close50th appellate court judge confirmed under President TrumpVideo

50th appellate court judge confirmed under President Trump

Carrie Severino breaks down the president's 'incredible accomplishment' that's rattling the left.

President Trump is closing the year by increasing his already transformative impact on the federal judiciary, with 13 of his district court nominees receiving confirmation this month.

That brings Trump’s total to 102 federal judges confirmed in 2019. Over the course of his administration, that total jumps to 187, including 50 to circuit courts of appeal and two Supreme Court justices.


"In terms of quality and quantity, we are going to be just about No. 1 by the time we finish — No. 1 of any president, any administration," Trump said in early November, noting that George Washington may have technically appointed more judges. At the time, he was celebrating his 150th federal judge.

The 9th Circuit in particular, which Trump has railed against as a “big thorn in our side” in the past due to its liberal bent, has seen a dramatic change in its makeup over the past three years, with 10 of its 29 active seats now being held by Trump appointees, and nearly half being held by appointees of Republican administrations.

Much of this is thanks to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who has helped push nominees through the Senate, even while combatting House Democrats as they impeach the president.

“My motto for the remainder of this Congress is ‘leave no vacancy behind,’” McConnell told Hugh Hewitt in a Wednesday radio interview.


The relentless pace means that more than a quarter of all federal appeals court judges were nominated by Trump and confirmed by the Republican-controlled Senate. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said Democrats are “doing everything we can” to slow down the judicial train, “but they changed the rules,″ referring to McConnell reducing the amount of debate time for a nominee from 30 hours to just two.

“While all eyes were understandably on impeachment, Mitch McConnell’s conveyor belt churned out a shocking number of judges this week in what remains the most underrated story of the Trump era,″ said Christopher Kang, chief counsel at liberal advocacy group Demand Justice.

Schumer blasted Trump's picks, telling The Associated Press that they are “are just so bad for the average American in so many ways,” due to their “hard right” stance. McConnell, however, said that judges who follow a strict interpretation of the law instead of taking an activist approach are good for everyone.

“It is not one party or the other that benefits when our federal courts consist of men and women who understand that a judge’s job is to follow the law, not to make the law,″ he said on the Senate floor last week. “The entire country benefits from that. Our constitutional system benefits from that.

Carrie Severino, policy director for the conservative Judicial Crisis Network, described Trump’s selections as “the kind of judge America wants,” claiming that the ability to select judges for lifetime positions is a significant part of why Trump was elected in 2016.

As Trump faces impeachment and a reelection bid in 2020, the impact of his judicial selections will be felt long after his presidency ends, regardless of whether he serves one term or two.


Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, wrote in a Fox News opinion piece last month that Trump’s achievement in this area was “historic,” referencing Texans confirmed to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, as well as Supreme Court Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.

“Few legacies will be longer lasting than this judicial one,” he said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Original Article

Republicans boost Trump’s judicial ‘farm team’ after AG elections, set sights on Bloomberg

closeBloomberg on 2020 Democrats: Trump would eat them upVideo

Bloomberg on 2020 Democrats: Trump would eat them up

Bloomberg takes swipe at fellow Democratic candidates; Republican political strategist Ashlee Strong and Democratic strategist Kevin Chavous react.

Republicans have successfully boosted President Trump's "farm team" for the federal judiciary after going undefeated in attorney general (AG) races last month, and are now setting their sights on 2020 presidential hopeful Michael Bloomberg.

Republican Attorneys General Association (RAGA) Executive Director Adam Piper told Fox News the GOP's clean sweep of AG races on election night has drawn attention to the group and will help provide future judicial picks for the president to choose from.

"We're starting to get the attention," Piper said Friday. "There are some storylines that haven't been told, though. One of the things is America's farm team. Those Trump [judicial] appointees have spent years of the last decade in state AG offices."

Piper highlighted several key policy issues but said energy remains one of the group's top concerns, while Bloomberg remains one of their top targets.

"When you look at the left… George Soros and Michael Bloomberg have pumped over $10 million into this clandestine project at New York University [NYU] to pay for mercenaries… who go to work in state AG offices on the left," he said.


Piper referred to the State Energy and Environmental Impact Center, which is headquartered at NYU Law and was created by Bloomberg in 2017. It seeks to hire and place attorneys in Democratic state AG offices in order to fight the Trump administration's energy policies.

Fox News reached out to the center, which denied having any affiliation with Soros. They also claimed their group is non-political and simply serves the public interest.

Piper disagreed and claimed: "Democrats couldn't keep up or play fairly, so they went out to Soros and Bloomberg as special assistant AGs."


Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who serves as RAGA's chairman, accused the center of being politically extreme and said Democratic AGs have ceded control of their offices to Bloomberg's foot soldiers.

“Environmental extremists can’t win at the ballot box or through the legislative process so they’re trying a new tactic: embed climate activists in the offices of Democrat state attorneys general," Paxton wrote in an email to Fox News.

"In their latest scheme, Democrat AGs are literally giving up control and letting Michael Bloomberg-funded staff run their offices," he continued. "Instead of pledging allegiance to the Constitution and rule of law, these 'Special Assistant Attorneys General' have to 'commit to defending environmental values and advancing progressive, clean energy, climate change and environmental legal positions.'"


Paxton also lamented the ethical implications of the center's involvement and said it serves as a backdoor for climate change activists to push environmental propaganda.

"The ethical problems with this scheme are obvious — Democratic state AG offices are taking on seasoned attorneys being paid by a radical, liberal Democratic presidential primary candidate, and in turn, wield state police power and use the authority of the state attorney general to implement Bloomberg’s progressive climate change agenda across the country," he said.

Original Article