Archive for the ‘Clinton obstructions of justice’ category

You can Smell Hillary’s Fear

November 4, 2016

You can Smell Hillary’s Fear, Front Page Magazine, Daniel Greenfield, November 4, 2016

hilsmells

Hillary Clinton has awkwardly wound her way through numerous scandals in just this election cycle. But she’s never shown fear or desperation before. Now that has changed. Whatever she is afraid of, it lies buried in her emails with Huma Abedin. And it can bring her down like nothing else has.

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In the final stretch of the election, Hillary Rodham Clinton has gone to war with the FBI.

The word “unprecedented” has been thrown around so often this election that it ought to be retired. But it’s still unprecedented for the nominee of a major political party to go war with the FBI.

But that’s exactly what Hillary and her people have done. Coma patients just waking up now and watching an hour of CNN from their hospital beds would assume that FBI Director James Comey is Hillary’s opponent in this election.

The FBI is under attack by everyone from Obama to CNN. Hillary’s people have circulated a letter attacking Comey. There are currently more media hit pieces lambasting him than targeting Trump. It wouldn’t be too surprising if the Clintons or their allies were to start running attack ads against the FBI.

The FBI’s leadership is being warned that the entire left-wing establishment will form a lynch mob if they continue going after Hillary. And the FBI’s credibility is being attacked by the media and the Democrats to preemptively head off the results of the investigation of the Clinton Foundation and Hillary Clinton.

The covert struggle between FBI agents and Obama’s DOJ people has gone explosively public.

The New York Times has compared Comey to J. Edgar Hoover. Its bizarre headline, “James Comey Role Recalls Hoover’s FBI, Fairly or Not” practically admits up front that it’s spouting nonsense. The Boston Globe has published a column calling for Comey’s resignation. Not to be outdone, Time has an editorial claiming that the scandal is really an attack on all women.

James Carville appeared on MSNBC to remind everyone that he was still alive and insane. He accused Comey of coordinating with House Republicans and the KGB. And you thought the “vast right wing conspiracy” was a stretch.

Countless media stories charge Comey with violating procedure. Do you know what’s a procedural violation? Emailing classified information stored on your bathroom server.

Senator Harry Reid has sent Comey a letter accusing him of violating the Hatch Act. The Hatch Act is a nice idea that has as much relevance in the age of Obama as the Tenth Amendment. But the cable news spectrum quickly filled with media hacks glancing at the Wikipedia article on the Hatch Act under the table while accusing the FBI director of one of the most awkward conspiracies against Hillary ever.

If James Comey is really out to hurt Hillary, he picked one hell of a strange way to do it.

Not too long ago Democrats were breathing a sigh of relief when he gave Hillary Clinton a pass in a prominent public statement. If he really were out to elect Trump by keeping the email scandal going, why did he trash the investigation? Was he on the payroll of House Republicans and the KGB back then and playing it coy or was it a sudden development where Vladimir Putin and Paul Ryan talked him into taking a look at Anthony Weiner’s computer?

Either Comey is the most cunning FBI director that ever lived or he’s just awkwardly trying to navigate a political mess that has trapped him between a DOJ leadership whose political futures are tied to Hillary’s victory and his own bureau whose apolitical agents just want to be allowed to do their jobs.

The only truly mysterious thing is why Hillary and her associates decided to go to war with a respected Federal agency. Most Americans like the FBI while Hillary Clinton enjoys a 60% unfavorable rating.

And it’s an interesting question.

Hillary’s old strategy was to lie and deny that the FBI even had a criminal investigation underway. Instead her associates insisted that it was a security review. The FBI corrected her and she shrugged it off. But the old breezy denial approach has given way to a savage assault on the FBI.

Pretending that nothing was wrong was a bad strategy, but it was a better one that picking a fight with the FBI while lunatic Clinton associates try to claim that the FBI is really the KGB.

There are two possible explanations.

Hillary Clinton might be arrogant enough to lash out at the FBI now that she believes that victory is near. The same kind of hubris that led her to plan her victory fireworks display could lead her to declare a war on the FBI for irritating her during the final miles of her campaign.

But the other explanation is that her people panicked.

Going to war with the FBI is not the behavior of a smart and focused presidential campaign. It’s an act of desperation. When a presidential candidate decides that her only option is to try and destroy the credibility of the FBI, that’s not hubris, it’s fear of what the FBI might be about to reveal about her.

During the original FBI investigation, Hillary Clinton was confident that she could ride it out. And she had good reason for believing that. But that Hillary Clinton is gone. In her place is a paranoid wreck. Within a short space of time the “positive” Clinton campaign promising to unite the country has been replaced by a desperate and flailing operation that has focused all its energy on fighting the FBI.

There’s only one reason for such bizarre behavior.

The Clinton campaign has decided that an FBI investigation of the latest batch of emails poses a threat to its survival. And so it’s gone all in on fighting the FBI. It’s an unprecedented step born of fear. It’s hard to know whether that fear is justified. But the existence of that fear already tells us a whole lot.

Clinton loyalists rigged the old investigation. They knew the outcome ahead of time as well as they knew the debate questions. Now suddenly they are no longer in control. And they are afraid.

You can smell the fear.

The FBI has wiretaps from the investigation of the Clinton Foundation. It’s finding new emails all the time. And Clintonworld panicked. The spinmeisters of Clintonworld have claimed that the email scandal is just so much smoke without fire. All that’s here is the appearance of impropriety without any of the substance. But this isn’t how you react to smoke. It’s how you respond to a fire.

The misguided assault on the FBI tells us that Hillary Clinton and her allies are afraid of a revelation bigger than the fundamental illegality of her email setup. The email setup was a preemptive cover up. The Clinton campaign has panicked badly out of the belief, right or wrong, that whatever crime the illegal setup was meant to cover up is at risk of being exposed.

The Clintons have weathered countless scandals over the years. Whatever they are protecting this time around is bigger than the usual corruption, bribery, sexual assaults and abuses of power that have followed them around throughout the years. This is bigger and more damaging than any of the allegations that have already come out. And they don’t want FBI investigators anywhere near it.

The campaign against Comey is pure intimidation. It’s also a warning. Any senior FBI people who value their careers are being warned to stay away. The Democrats are closing ranks around their nominee against the FBI. It’s an ugly and unprecedented scene. It may also be their last stand.

Hillary Clinton has awkwardly wound her way through numerous scandals in just this election cycle. But she’s never shown fear or desperation before. Now that has changed. Whatever she is afraid of, it lies buried in her emails with Huma Abedin. And it can bring her down like nothing else has.

The Clinton E-mails Are Critical to the Clinton Foundation Investigation

November 2, 2016

The Clinton E-mails Are Critical to the Clinton Foundation Investigation, National Review, Andres C. McCarthy, November 1, 2016

lynchagAttorney General Loretta Lynch (Reuters photo: Shannon Stapleton)
 

(Please see also, Am I back in Argentina? — DM)

The Wall Street Journal’s report that, for over a year, the FBI has been investigating the Clinton Foundation for potential financial crimes and influence peddling is, as Rich Lowry said Monday, a blockbuster. As I argued over the weekend, the manner in which the State Department was put in the service of the Foundation during Hillary Clinton’s tenure as secretary is shocking. It is suggestive of a pattern of pay-to-play bribery, the monetizing of political influence, fraud, and obstruction of justice that the Justice Department should be investigating as a possible RICO conspiracy under the federal anti-racketeering laws.

The Journal’s Devlin Barrett buries the Clinton Foundation lede in the 14th paragraph of his report. Even more astonishing are his final three paragraphs:

In September, agents on the foundation case asked to see the emails contained on nongovernment laptops that had been searched as part of the Clinton email case, but that request was rejected by prosecutors at the Eastern District of New York, in Brooklyn. Those emails were given to the FBI based on grants of partial immunity and limited-use agreements, meaning agents could only use them for the purpose of investigating possible mishandling of classified information.

Some FBI agents were dissatisfied with that answer, and asked for permission to make a similar request to federal prosecutors in Manhattan, according to people familiar with the matter. [FBI Deputy Director Andrew] McCabe, these people said, told them no and added that they couldn’t “go prosecutor-shopping.”

Not long after that discussion, FBI agents informed the bureau’s leaders about the Weiner laptop, prompting Mr. Comey’s disclosure to Congress and setting off the furor that promises to consume the final days of a tumultuous campaign.

Let me unpack this.

Readers are unlikely to know that the Eastern District of New York in Brooklyn is not just any United States attorney’s office. It is the office that was headed by Attorney General Loretta Lynch until President Obama elevated her to attorney general less than two years ago.

It was in the EDNY that Ms. Lynch first came to national prominence in 1999, when she was appointed U.S. attorney by President Bill Clinton — the husband of the main subject of the FBI’s investigations with whom Lynch furtively met in the back of a plane parked on an Arizona tarmac days before the announcement that Mrs. Clinton would not be indicted. Obama reappointed Lynch as the EDNY’s U.S. attorney in 2010. She was thus in charge of staffing that office for nearly six years before coming to Main Justice in Washington. That means the EDNY is full of attorneys Lynch hired and supervised.

When we learn that Clinton Foundation investigators are being denied access to patently relevant evidence by federal prosecutors in Brooklyn, those are the prosecutors — Loretta Lynch’s prosecutors — we are talking about.

Recall, moreover, that it was Lynch’s Justice Department that:

refused to authorize use of the grand jury to further the Clinton e-mails investigation, thus depriving the FBI of the power to compel testimony and the production of evidence by subpoena;

consulted closely with defense attorneys representing subjects of the investigation;

permitted Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson — the subordinates deputized by Mrs. Clinton to sort through her e-mails and destroy thousands of them — to represent Clinton as attorneys, despite the fact that they were subjects of the same investigation and had been granted immunity from prosecution (to say nothing of the ethical and legal prohibitions against such an arrangement);

drastically restricted the FBI’s questioning of Mills and other subjects of the investigation; and

struck the outrageous deals that gave Mills and Samuelson immunity from prosecution in exchange for providing the FBI with the laptops on which they reviewed Clinton’s four years of e-mails. That arrangement was outrageous for three reasons: 1) Mills and Samuelson should have been compelled to produce the computers by grand-jury subpoena with no immunity agreement; 2) Lynch’s Justice Department drastically restricted the FBI’s authority to examine the computers; and 3) Lynch’s Justice Department agreed that the FBI would destroy the computers following its very limited examination.

As I have detailed, it was already clear that Lynch’s Justice Department was stunningly derelict in hamstringing the bureau’s e-mails investigation. But now that we know the FBI wassimultaneously investigating the Clinton Foundation yet being denied access to the Clinton e-mails, the dereliction appears unconscionable.

It had to be screamingly obvious that the Clinton State Department e-mails, run through a server that also supported Clinton Foundation activities, would be critically important to any probe of the Foundation. Consider, for example, the issue of criminal intent, over which much has been made since Director Comey stressed the purported lack of intent proof in recommending against an indictment of Mrs. Clinton for mishandling classified information.

I believe, to the contrary, that there is abundant intent evidence. The law presumes that people intend the natural, foreseeable consequences of their actions: When you’re the secretary of state, and you systematically conduct your government business on private, non-secure e-mail rather than the government’s secure servers, you must know it is inevitable that classified information will be transmitted through and stored on the private server. Still, even though Clinton’s misconduct was thus willful and grossly negligent, no sensible person believes she was trying to harm the United States; the damage she did to national security was an easily foreseeable consequence of her scheme, but that damage was not what motivated her actions.

In such circumstances, it is a common tactic of defense lawyers to confound motive and criminal intent. Every criminal statute has an intent element (i.e., a requirement to prove that conduct was knowing, willful, intentional, or grossly negligent). Prosecutors, however, are virtually never required to prove motive. To be sure, they usually do introduce evidence of motive, because establishing a motive often helps to prove intent. But motive can sometimes confuse matters, so proving it is not mandatory.

A common, concrete example is helpful here: the guy who robs a bank because he is strapped for cash and his mom needs an operation. Although it was not the robber’s purpose to petrify the bank teller, proving that he had a desperate need for money helps demonstrate that his theft of money was quite intentional — not an accident or mistake. So even though we can all agree that our bank robber did not have a motive to do harm, his benign motive does not absolve him of guilt for the bank robbery he fully intended to commit.

Yet, such absolution is exactly what Comey offered in claiming there was insufficient proof of criminal intent to charge Clinton with mishandling classified information.  It was a rationale that echoed public comments by President Obama and Lynch’s Justice Department. They would have you believe that because Clinton was not motivated by a desire to harm national security she cannot have intended to violate the classified-information laws. It is sleight-of-hand, but it was good enough for Democrats and the media to pronounce Clinton “exonerated.”

Now, however, let’s consider the Clinton Foundation. While Clinton may not have been motivated to harm our national security, she was precisely motivated to conceal the corrupt interplay of the State Department and the Clinton Foundation. That was the real objective of the home-brew server system: Mrs. Clinton wanted to shield from Congress, the courts, and the public the degree to which she, Bill, and their confederates were cashing in on her awesome political influence as secretary of state. That is exactly why she did business outside the government system that captures all official e-mails; and, critically, it perfectly explains why she deleted and attempted to destroy 33,000 e-mails — risibly claiming they involved yoga routines, Chelsea’s wedding, and the like.

While knowing the purpose of the private server system may not advance our understanding of the classified-information offenses, it greatly advances our understanding of the scheme to make the Clinton Foundation a State Department pay-to-play vehicle. Consequently, the Clinton e-mails generated in the course of this scheme are apt to be highly probative of  public-corruption offenses.

With that in mind, let’s go back to the Journal’s account of why Loretta Lynch’s EDNY prosecutors have blocked the FBI’s Clinton Foundation investigators from examining the Clinton e-mails found on the laptop computers of Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson:

Those emails were given to the FBI based on grants of partial immunity and limited-use agreements, meaning agents could only use them for the purpose of investigating possible mishandling of classified information.

The Journal’s report says the FBI’s Clinton Foundation team was “dissatisfied” with this explanation — as well they should have been. The grants of immunity and limited-use agreements were disgraceful for the reasons outlined above. Significantly, however, the limitations imposed on the classified-information investigation should not, in the main, be binding on the Clinton Foundation investigation. Of course, the immunity grants to Mills and Samuelson must be honored even though they should never have been given in the first place. But those agreements only protect Mills and Samuelson. They would not prevent evidence found on the computers and retained by the FBI from being used against Hillary Clinton or any other possible conspirator.

Clearly, that is why agents on the FBI’s Clinton Foundation team wanted to get their investigation out of the EDNY’s clutches and move it to the U.S. attorney’s office in the Southern District of New York (my office for many years, as well as Jim Comey’s). The SDNY has a tradition of relative independence from the Justice Department and a well-earned reputation for pursuing political-corruption cases aggressively — a reputation burnished by U.S. attorney Preet Bharara’s prosecutions of prominent politicians from both parties. Alas, the Clinton Foundation agents were said to be barred from “prosecutor shopping” by FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe — the official whose wife’s Virginia state senate campaign was infused with $675,000 in cash and in-kind contributions by political committees controlled by Governor Terry McAuliffe, a notorious Clinton fixer and former Clinton Foundation board member.

Because of Democratic and media furor over Director Comey’s reopening of the Clinton e-mails investigation last week, the FBI is now under enormous pressure to review tens of thousands of e-mails stored on the laptop shared by Huma Abedin and Anthony Weiner. The point is to hound the bureau into announcing before Election Day (seven days from now) whether any new classified e-mails have been found. If none are found, this outcome will be spun as yet another “exoneration” of Hillary Clinton.

Here, however, is the real outrage: Beneath all this noise, Loretta Lynch’s Justice Department is blocking the FBI from examining Clinton e-mails in connection with its investigation of the Clinton Foundation — an investigation that is every bit as serious.

Were it not for the Clinton Foundation, there probably would not be a Clinton e-mail scandal. Mrs. Clinton’s home-brew communications system was designed to conceal the degree to which the State Department was put in the service of Foundation donors who transformed the “dead broke” Clintons into hundred-millionaires.

At this point, the reopened classified-information investigation is a distraction: Under the Comey/DOJ “insufficient intent evidence” rationale, there would be no charges even if previously undiscovered classified e-mails were found on the Abedin/Weiner computer. Instead, what is actually essential is that the FBI’s Clinton Foundation investigators get access to all the thousands of Clinton e-mails, including those recovered from the Mills and Samuelson laptops. The agents must also have the time they need to piece together all the Clinton e-mails (from whatever source), follow up leads, and make their case.

No one seems to notice that they are being thwarted. Hillary hasn’t even been elected, but already we are benumbed by Clinton Scandal Exhaustion Syndrome.

Am I back in Argentina?

November 2, 2016

Am I back in Argentina? Israel National News, Rabbi David L. Algaze, November 1, 2016

I awoke last night from a nightmare dream: I was in my ancestral country of Argentina and I was afraid once again of the dictator named Juan Domingo Peron and his wife Evita. That was scary indeed. The government was dominated by a party that made the laws as they pleased and no one had the power to check them, let alone prosecute their misdeeds. Even the press was muzzled or complicit. Here the wife of the president had a special foundation, Fundacion Eva Peron that accepted donations from wealthy donors and who received special treatment from the government. Anyone who dared to challenge this state of affairs was in trouble and the debate over the propriety of any act was thus ended.

But it was morning now and I relaxed knowing that I was now in a democratic country protected by a Constitution, honest organizations and lack of corruption, where no one is above the law, ordinary citizens are not threatened by any arm of the government and where no special favors are dispensed to high donors or foreign entities. Here the law is equal for all, and we can be sure that no one gets special treatment because they give money to a special foundation. My night was over and with it that awful dream.

Suddenly, though, I saw a high government official who was testifying that she never sent any classified material incorrectly, who lied about keeping a private email server. When the secret was out, she and her staff were busy destroying evidence.  But wait, the government was investigating and we could breathe easily. After months of “investigation” by top enforcers of the law, the government forgave her trespassing. They criticized her for just being “extremely careless” in her handling of classified information but let her off the hook. The FBI did not pursue evidence of any statements that could be false, did not investigate any obstruction of justice and the destruction of evidence.

Even more, the agents gave immunity to people who could have provided evidence of crimes and these people went on to plead the Fifth Amendment refusing to testify before Congress. The entire investigation by the FBI and the Department of Justice reeked of willful negligence or favoritism – that is, until this week when the investigation was reopened because of a new set of emails.

Even more striking, I saw that the Clinton Foundation and the State Department headed by Hillary Clinton were one seamless entity, employing the same people and coordinating schedules. Emails discovered by people outside of government — who had forced their release against State Department wishes, showed that Clinton Foundation staff was questioning some State Department decisions by stating that President Clinton “will be very unhappy if that’s the case.”

Donors to the Foundation expected to receive special treatment such as being invited to State dinners or being given special business opportunities. The scandal of President Clinton in Haiti and his business partners, i.e., donors to the Foundation, and the confluence of extraordinarily high speaking fees at groups that later received profitable business deals and special access to the State Department headed by his wife—are these real or imagined?

Donors to the Foundation expected to receive special treatment such as being invited to State dinners or being given special business opportunities. The scandal of President Clinton in Haiti and his business partners, i.e., donors to the Foundation, and the confluence of extraordinarily high speaking fees at groups that later received profitable business deals and special access to the State Department headed by his wife—are these real or imagined?

Weekly Update: Clinton Email Crimes?

October 29, 2016

Weekly Update: Clinton Email Crimes? Judicial Watch, October 28, 2016

Clinton State Department IT Official John Bentel Takes the Fifth
U.S. Spends Millions on “Green Bus Corridor” in Mexico, “Bicycle Highway” in Colombia
Judicial Watch Will Monitor Virginia Polls on Election Day
Special Report: Clinton’s Pay to Play Scheme

 

Clinton State Department IT Official John Bentel Takes the Fifth

The bureaucrats Hillary Clinton worked with at State still are withholding what they know about her illicit email practices.

You can see that in the deposition transcript of John Bentel, the State Department’s former Director of Information Resource Management of the Executive Secretariat, who was ordered by U.S. District Court Judge Emmet G. Sullivan to respond to our questions. We released the transcript this week.

Mr. Bentel, whose office handles information technology for the Office of the Secretary, answered 87 questions with: “On advice from my legal counsel, I decline to answer the question and I invoke my Fifth Amendment rights.”

We had the same experience with IT political appointee Bryan Pagliano, the Clinton State Department IT official who reportedly provided support for the Clinton email system.

Bentel asserted his Fifth Amendment right in answer to many key questions about issues raised directly by Judge Sullivan. On August 19, 2016, Judge Sullivan granted Judicial Watch’s request to depose Bentel, citing significant discrepancies in Bentel’s previous statements on the Clinton non-state.gov email system:

The Court is persuaded that Mr. Bentel should be deposed because the record in this case appears to contradict his sworn testimony before the [House Select] Benghazi Committee . . .. Specifically, Mr. Bentel testified that he was not aware that Secretary Clinton’s email account was housed on a private server until media reports in 2015 . . .. However, several emails indicate Mr. Bentel knew about the private server as early as 2009.

Bentel asserted his Fifth Amendment rights in response to all questions about what he knew about Hillary Clinton’s email system and its impact on the Freedom of Information Act.

In ordering Bentel’s deposition, Judge Sullivan also cited a May 2016 Inspector General’s report that found that Mr. Bentel told employees in his office that Secretary Clinton’s email arrangement had been approved by the State Department’s legal staff and also instructed his subordinates not to discuss the Secretary’s email again:

In one meeting, one staff member raised concerns that information sent and received on Secretary Clinton’s account could contain Federal records that needed to be preserved in order to satisfy Federal recordkeeping requirements. According to the staff member, the Director stated that the Secretary’s personal system had been reviewed and approved by Department legal staff and that the matter was not to be discussed any further . . . . According to the other S/ES-IRM staff member who raised concerns about the server, the Director stated that the mission of S/ES-IRM is to support the Secretary and instructed the staff never to speak of the Secretary’s personal email system again.

Bentel asserted his Fifth Amendment right when asked about this reference to the State Department Inspector General’s report and about his FBI interview.

Mr. Bentel, on advice of the Obama Justice Department and personal counsel, refused to answer any questions about whether Hillary Clinton was paying his legal fees or offered him employment or other financial incentives. Pagliano also declined to say who was paying for his legal representation.

We previously deposed seven former Clinton top aides and current State Department officials, including top Clinton aides Cheryl Mills and Huma Abedin. We also deposed IT official Bryan Pagliano, who asserted his Fifth Amendment right not to testify during the Judicial Watch deposition. And Clinton last week answered our questions under oath regarding her non-government email system.

The depositions come in connection with a Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit that seeks records about the corrupt patronage job given to Clinton confidante Huma Abedin, who served as deputy chief of staff to former Secretary Clinton (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:13-cv-01363)).

The fact that yet another State Department official took the Fifth highlights the disturbing implication that criminal acts took place related to the Clinton email system and our FOIA requests.

 

U.S. Spends Millions on “Green Bus Corridor” in Mexico, “Bicycle Highway” in Colombia

A recent survey revealed that Americans most fear government corruption and that the climate doesn’t even make the Top Ten list of worries.

Our Corruption Chronicles blog illustrates why Americans should worry about climate change – because of the government corruption involved in supposedly combatting it:

Surprise, surprise: The U.S. is the first to donate millions of dollars to yet another global warming experiment—run by the famously corrupt United Nations—that aims to forge “climate resilient infrastructure” in third-world countries.

The money will help build a bicycle highway in Colombia and bring electric buses and a “green bus corridor” to Mexico, issues that are unlikely to keep most American taxpayers up at night.

It’s part of an initiative called C40 Cities Finance Facility, launched at the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris last year. The global warming powwow in France has already cost American taxpayers a chunk of change, and Judicial Watch made the numbers public over the summer after obtaining records from the U.S. Secret Service and the Department of the Air Force.

The documents offer a detailed breakdown of the cost, but the total expenditure to have President Obama attend the ludicrous Paris shindig was an eye-popping $4,165,068. Judicial Watch had to file a lawsuit to get the information because the administration refused to provide it under the federal public-records law that was enacted to keep government in check.

During the Paris conference, the C40 Cities Finance Facility was launched to provide much-needed cash for a 10-year-old program called C40 that claims to be a “network of the world’s megacities committed to addressing climate change.” The conglomerate specializes in tackling climate change in developing countries by driving urban action that reduces greenhouse gas emissions and climate risks.

Evidently, it’s come up with some brilliant ideas in the last decade to accomplish its mission but not enough money to implement them. As is the case in many of these global, feel-good initiatives, Uncle Sam has generously opened his checkbook for this important cause. Germany is the other “funding partner” listed along with the U.S.

The first $2 million, doled out this month by the U.S., will fund two urban pilot projects in Latin America that are expected to bring “climate change adaptation and mitigation benefits.” The first project is a 25-kilometer bicycle highway in Bogota, Colombia, that will connect citizens from low, middle and high-income neighborhoods to work, education, and recreation opportunities.

An announcement published by the U.S. government calls the project a “first-of-its-kind” traversing the Colombian city from south to north. The rest of the money will buy a fleet of at least 100 electric buses for Mexico City and install a “green bus corridor” in one of its major thoroughfares. It’s expected to serve an estimated 133,400 Mexicans daily, providing connections to metro lines. This is an important investment for the U.S., a government official says in the announcement, because the impacts of climate change are impeding cities from delivering reliable services, “especially to the poorest.”

Years ago, the Obama administration determined that the poor will feel the brunt of climate change and it has cost American taxpayers monstrous sums. In the last few years the U.S. government has funded a number of programs, both domestic and international, to prepare those communities for the impact.

Back in 2012 the administration asked Congress for a whopping $770 million to help developing countries with climate change initiatives after it had already spent $323 million on a project called Global Climate Change Initiative that helps “meet the adaptation and mitigation needs of developing countries, including deploying clean energy technologies.”

Earlier this year, a federal audit revealed that a $25 million project to help Guatemala combat the ills of climate change is rife with problems that include data errors and discrepancies. The program is officially known as Climate Nature and Communities in Guatemala (CNCG).

Ideology wrapped in dubious science = taxpayer boondoggle. Is it any wonder that people are tired of corrupt politicians?

 

Judicial Watch Will Monitor Virginia Polls on Election Day

As part of our ongoing Election Integrity Project, we plan to have Judicial Watch volunteer poll observers will monitor polling sites in Virginia on Election Day. We have significant concerns about the integrity of the election process there:

  • 1,046 aliens, or residents who are not U.S. citizens, were on the voter rolls in 8 Virginia counties.  If that rate of non-citizen registration held in the rest of Virginia’s counties, that would mean that about 6,500 non-citizens are registered to vote in Virginia.
  • A September 2016report by the Public Interest Legal Foundation and the Virginia Voter’s Alliance shows: “In the 8 jurisdictions that provided us with lists of aliens recently removed from their voter rolls, we discovered that 31 non-citizens had cast a total of 186 votes between 2005 and 2015. The most alien votes were cast in 2012 followed by 2008, the year President Obama was elected to his first term.” There are 133 total Virginia voting jurisdictions, so the number in this report represents a mere fraction of the true total of illegal votes.
  • 19 deceasedindividuals recently re-registered to vote in Virginia.
  • In 2013, the Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck Program (Crosscheck), which provides a lists of voters who are registered in more than one of the 26 states participating in the program, revealed that57,923 Virginia voters were registered to vote in at least one other state. Of course this number would be much higher if the Crosscheck program included every state – including New York, California, and Texas, the most populous states in the country.

Our Election Integrity Project leader, Robert Popper, will train Virginia’s poll watchers.  Bob is a former deputy chief of the Voting Section in the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice and a veteran poll observer for the Department of Justice.

The Election Integrity project began in February 2012. Since that time Judicial Watch has put several state and county officials on notice when they are in violation of federal laws requiring them to clean up their voter rolls.

We also took action in lawsuits defending photo ID and other commonsense election integrity measures.  And there are also our historic and  successful lawsuits in states like Ohio and Indiana that resulted in cleaner voter rolls and have achieved victories in the United States Supreme Court to stop race-based elections in Hawaii.

Our team also fought in court against the Left (i.e. the Obama administration) that wants to make it easier for non-citizens to register to vote, and harder to remove them once they are illegally registered. And Judicial Watch has conducted election monitoring before, for example in New Hampshire in 2014.

“Judicial Watch election monitors will be neutral and silent observers at select polling places in Virginia,” Popper noted. “We do not oppose or endorse candidates for public office. Our election monitoring in Virginia is wholly independent of any party or candidate.”

Recent polls show that voters are becoming “deeply skeptical” about election integrity. One poll found that 98 percent of people believe that voter fraud occurs: 74 percent believed that “some” or a “great deal” of voter fraud is going on, and 24 percent said hardly any. A poll in The Washington Post found that: “60% of Republicans believe illegal immigrants vote; 43% believe people vote using dead people’s names.”

Virginia residents interested in monitoring a local polling site on Election Day may respond by email to Eric Lee at elee@judicialwatch.org.

The integrity of our government begins with our ability to trust what happens in the voting booth. Incidents of voting fraud now flaring up around the country are an indication that our concern is not misplaced.

 

Special Report: Clinton’s Pay to Play Scheme

Let me encourage you to watch the “One America News Network Special Report: Clinton’s Pay-to-Play Scheme.”

This well-crafted report reveals how the Clintons went from being “broke” to being worth hundreds of millions. In it, you will hear the experts, including representatives from Judicial Watch, disclose how the Clinton Foundation traded government access in exchange for donations. You also will see the evidence of an FBI “cover-up” of the Hillary Clinton email investigation.

You can watch it here. It is worth your time.

America Is at Its Most Perilous Crossroads Since World War II

October 29, 2016

America Is at Its Most Perilous Crossroads Since World War II, PJ MediaRoger L Simon, October 28, 2016

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To say that the USA is at its most dangerous crossroads since World War II might sound overheated, if it were not so obviously true.

Our country is about to (or was about to—we’ll see) elect a woman president who, to a great many of us, possibly a majority, is indisputably a criminal and about to draw our federal government into nonstop litigation, more than likely leading to an impeachment trial at the least, weakening our already weakened state, blotting almost everything out and dominating all our attention and the airwaves for the next several years.

We didn’t really need this latest round of email allegations emerging from the disgusting marriage and lifestyles of  Huma Abedin and Anthony Weiner, what the NY Post calls a “Stroking Gun,” to tell us that, but they have added a fillip, a certain je ne sais quoi to the political party formally known as “Democratic.”

All this is happening with the Middle East falling apart, radical Islam spreading across all the continents save Antarctica (maybe even there), Russia and China expanding their influence, North Korea and Iran building their militaries and weaponry with impunity and the global economy in tatters (and that’s not counting relatively local issues like the disintegration of Obamacare and the execrable condition of our inner cities).

And we have to listen to that appalling witch Hillary Clinton complaining that the FBI isn’t being “transparent” enough.  This is the same woman who took her entire business as secretary of State offline and lied about it so many times it would take all the abacuses in China to count it up.

As Joseph Welch famously said to Joseph McCarthy, “Have you no sense of decency, sir?”  Only this time it’s worse, because Hillary Clinton makes Joseph McCarthy seem like Mother Teresa.

Get ready, Mr. and Mrs. America, because we are headed for a “winter of our discontent” unlike any we have ever seen.  And there won’t be a son of York or Lancaster to save us.  With a president already known to have lied through his teeth about the email server, we don’t know where this is all going but we can be sure it’s nowhere good.

At this moment the so-called “liberals” (how does that misnomer seem now?) are in a frenzy, lashing out because they are afraid her gangster-ladyship might actually lose.  They yowl on Twitter that Donald Trump or Kellyanne Conway were too gleeful about the sudden emergence of the new emails (who knew that even Julian Assange could be upstaged?), but, as her ladyship herself opined, “What difference at this point could it make?”

None, really.

The situation is clear—and should be even to the #NeverTrump crowd now, if they are honest with themselves (hard to do for all of us, I know, but try). Yes, we are at the crossroads. Whatever you think of Donald Trump is pretty much irrelevant.  Sometimes things get remarkably simple … you know, those so-called moments of clarity, and we have one now:

If you consider yourself an American citizen who supports this country even a little bit—you don’t have to be a flag-waving patriot for this—how do you feel about a criminal sitting in the oval office of the White House as president of the United States?

If that disturbs you,  you know what to do.  If that doesn’t disturb you, well, anything goes or as some German once said, “The ends justify the means.” Or was that really a German? Maybe it was John Podesta. Or Cheryl Mills. Or Huma Abedin. Or Hillary Clinton.  I’m getting confused here.

No, I guess it was Karl Marx, after all.  They just updated him—in ways that could make them millions of dollars, hundreds of millions.  I mean, who wants to spend the rest of your life scratching lice out of your beard in the British Museum?  Who wants to be a sucker when you can make the rest of us into suckers?

Had enough?  I have.

Let’s save ourselves and put an end to it November 8.

Clinton’s State Department: A RICO Enterprise

October 29, 2016

Clinton’s State Department: A RICO Enterprise, National Review, Andres C. McCarthy, October 29, 2016

hillary-clinton-corruption-foundation-was-keyClinton is sworn in as secretary of state, February 2, 2009. (Reuters photo: Jonathan Ernst)

Whatever the relevance of the new e-mails to the probe of Clinton’s classified-information transgressions and attempt to destroy thousands of emails, these offenses may pale in comparison with Hillary Clinton’s most audacious violations of law: Crimes that should still be under investigation; crimes that will, in fitting Watergate parlance, be a cancer on the presidency if she manages to win on November 8.

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She appears to have used her official powers to do favors for major Clinton Foundation donors.

Felony mishandling of classified information, including our nation’s most closely guarded intelligence secrets; the misappropriation and destruction of tens of thousands of government records — these are serious criminal offenses. To this point, the Justice Department and FBI have found creative ways not to charge Hillary Clinton for them. Whether this will remain the case has yet to be seen. As we go to press, the stunning news has broken that the FBI’s investigation is being reopened. It appears, based on early reports, that in the course of examining communications devices in a separate “sexting” investigation of disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner, the bureau stumbled on relevant e-mails — no doubt connected to Huma Abedin, Mr. Weiner’s wife and, more significantly, Mrs. Clinton’s closest confidant. According to the New York Times, the FBI has seized at least one electronic device belonging to Ms. Abedin as well. New e-mails, never before reviewed by the FBI, have been recovered.

The news is still emerging, and there will be many questions — particularly if it turns out that the bureau failed to obtain Ms. Abedin’s communications devices earlier in the investigation, a seemingly obvious step. As we await answers, we can only observe that, whatever the FBI has found, it was significant enough for director James Comey to sense the need to notify Congress, despite knowing what a bombshell this would be just days before the presidential election.

One thing, however, is already clear. Whatever the relevance of the new e-mails to the probe of Clinton’s classified-information transgressions and attempt to destroy thousands of emails, these offenses may pale in comparison with Hillary Clinton’s most audacious violations of law: Crimes that should still be under investigation; crimes that will, in fitting Watergate parlance, be a cancer on the presidency if she manages to win on November 8.

Mrs. Clinton appears to have converted the office of secretary of state into a racketeering enterprise. This would be a violation of the RICO law — the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act of 1971 (codified in the U.S. penal code at sections 1961 et seq.).

Hillary and her husband, former president Bill Clinton, operated the Clinton Foundation. Ostensibly a charity, the foundation was a de facto fraud scheme to monetize Hillary’s power as secretary of state (among other aspects of the Clintons’ political influence). The scheme involved (a) the exchange of political favors, access, and influence for millions of dollars in donations; (b) the circumvention of campaign-finance laws that prohibit political donations by foreign sources; (c) a vehicle for Mrs. Clinton to shield her State Department e-mail communications from public and congressional scrutiny while she and her husband exploited the fundraising potential of her position; and (d) a means for Clinton insiders to receive private-sector compensation and explore lucrative employment opportunities while drawing taxpayer-funded government salaries.

While the foundation did perform some charitable work, this camouflaged the fact that contributions were substantially diverted to pay lavish salaries and underwrite luxury travel for Clinton insiders. Contributions skyrocketed to $126 million in 2009, the year Mrs. Clinton arrived at Foggy Bottom. Breathtaking sums were “donated” by high-rollers and foreign governments that had crucial business before the State Department. Along with those staggering donations came a spike in speaking opportunities and fees for Bill Clinton. Of course, disproportionate payments and gifts to a spouse are common ways of bribing public officials — which is why, for example, high-ranking government officeholders must reveal their spouses’ income and other asset information on their financial-disclosure forms.

While there are other egregious transactions, the most notorious corruption episode of Secretary Clinton’s tenure involves the State Department’s approval of a deal that surrendered fully one-fifth of the United States’ uranium-mining capacity to Vladimir Putin’s anti-American thugocracy in Russia.

The story, significant background of which predates Mrs. Clinton’s tenure at the State Department, has been recounted in ground-breaking reporting by the Hoover Institution’s Peter Schweizer (in his remarkable book Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich) and the New York Times. In a nutshell, in 2005, under the guise of addressing the incidence of HIV/AIDS in Kazakhstan (where the disease is nearly nonexistent), Bill Clinton helped his Canadian billionaire pal Frank Giustra to convince the ruling despot, Nursultan Nazarbayev (an infamous torturer and human-rights violator), to grant coveted uranium-mining rights to Giustra’s company, Ur-Asia Energy (notwithstanding that it had no background in the highly competitive uranium business). Uranium is a key component of nuclear power, from which the United States derives 20 percent of its total electrical power.

In the months that followed, Giustra gave an astonishing $31.3 million to the Clinton Foundation and pledged $100 million more. With the Kazakh rights secured, Ur-Asia was able to expand its holdings and attract new investors, like Ian Telfer, who also donated $2.35 million to the Clinton Foundation. Ur-Asia merged with Uranium One, a South African company, in a $3.5 billion deal — with Telfer becoming Uranium One’s chairman. The new company proceeded to buy up major uranium assets in the United States.

Meanwhile, as tends to happen in dictatorships, Nazarbayev (the Kazakh dictator) turned on the head of his state-controlled uranium agency (Kazatomprom), who was arrested for selling valuable mining rights to foreign entities like Ur-Asia/Uranium One. This was likely done at the urging of Putin, the neighborhood bully whose state-controlled atomic-energy company (Rosatom) was hoping to grab the Kazakh mines — whether by taking them outright or by taking over Uranium One.

The arrest, which happened a few months after Obama took office, sent Uranium One stock into free fall, as investors fretted that the Kazakh mining rights would be lost. Uranium One turned to Secretary Clinton’s State Department for help. As State Department cables disclosed by WikiLeaks show, Uranium One officials wanted more than a U.S. statement to the media; they pressed for written confirmation that their mining licenses were valid. Secretary Clinton’s State Department leapt into action: An energy officer from the U.S. embassy immediately held meetings with the Kazakh regime. A few days later, it was announced that Russia’s Rosatom had purchased 17 percent of Uranium One. Problem solved.

Except it became a bigger problem when the Russian company sought to acquire a controlling interest in Uranium One. That would mean a takeover not only of the Kazakh mines but of the U.S. uranium assets as well. Such a foreign grab requires approval by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, a powerful government tribunal that the secretary of state sits on and heavily influences. Though she had historically postured as a hawk against foreign acquisitions of American assets with critical national-security implications, Secretary Clinton approved the Russian takeover of Uranium One. During and right after the big-bucks Russian acquisition, Telfer contributed $1.35 million to the Clinton Foundation. Other people with ties to Uranium One appear to have ponied up as much as $5.6 million in donations.

In 2009, the incoming Obama administration had been deeply concerned about the potential for corruption were Hillary to run the State Department while Bill and their family foundation were hauling in huge payments from foreign governments, businesses, and entrepreneurs. For precisely this reason, the White House required Mrs. Clinton to agree in writing that the Clinton Foundation would annually disclose its major donors and seek pre-approval from the White House before the foundation accepted foreign contributions. This agreement was repeated flouted — for example, by concealing the contributions from Telfer. Indeed, the foundation was recently forced to refile its tax returns for the years that Secretary Clinton ran the State Department after media reports that it failed to disclose foreign donations — approximately $20 million worth.

Under RICO, an “enterprise” can be any association of people, informal or formal, illegitimate or legitimate — it could be a Mafia family, an ostensibly charitable foundation, or a department of government. It is a racketeering enterprise if its affairs are conducted through “a pattern of racketeering activity.” A “pattern” means merely two or more violations of federal or state law; these violations constitute “racketeering activity” if they are included among the extensive list of felonies laid out in the statute.

Significantly for present purposes, the listed felonies include bribery, fraud, and obstruction of justice. Fraud encompasses both schemes to raise money on misleading pretexts (e.g., a charitable foundation that camouflages illegal political payoffs) and schemes to deprive Americans of their right to the honest services of a public official (e.g., quid pro quo arrangements in which official acts are performed in exchange for money). Both fraud and obstruction can be proved by false statements — whether they are public proclamations (e.g., “I turned over all work-related e-mails to the State Department”) or lies to government officials (e.g., concealing “charitable” donations from foreign sources after promising to disclose them, or claiming not to know that the “(C)” symbol in a government document means it is classified at the confidential level).

The WikiLeaks disclosures of e-mails hacked from Clinton presidential-campaign chairman John Podesta provide mounting confirmation that the Clinton Foundation was orchestrated for the purpose of enriching the Clintons personally and leveraging then-Secretary Clinton’s power to do it. Hillary and her underlings pulled this off by making access to her contingent on Clinton Foundation ties; by having top staff service Clinton Foundation donors and work on Clinton Foundation business; by systematically conducting her e-mail communications outside the government server system; by making false statements to the public, the White House, Congress, the courts, and the FBI; and by destroying thousands of e-mails — despite congressional inquiries and Freedom of Information Act demands — in order to cover up (among other things) the shocking interplay between the State Department and the Clinton Foundation.

Under federal law, that can amount to running an enterprise by a pattern of fraud, bribery, and obstruction. If so, it is a major crime. Like the major crimes involving the mishandling of classified information and destruction of government files, it cries out for a thorough and credible criminal investigation. More important, wholly apart from whether there is sufficient evidence for criminal convictions, there is overwhelming evidence of a major breach of trust that renders Mrs. Clinton unfit for any public office, let along the nation’s highest public office.

Newt Gingrich Full Interview with Sean Hannity (10/28/2016)

October 29, 2016

Newt Gingrich Full Interview with Sean Hannity (10/28/2016), Fox News via YouTube

(It’s about the re-opened FBI “investigation” of the Clinton e-mails and unsecured server. — DM)