'Massive criminal conspiracy' documented by IG, says Lindsey Graham
People actually believe those responsible for the attempted coup [coup attempt] of a duly elected sitting US President will go unpunished?
End to our Constitutional Republic?
No equal justice under the law?
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Horowitz's report, released Monday, found 17 "significant errors or omissions" by the Obama FBI in its effort to obtain warrants to surveil Trump campaign volunteer Carter Page.
TRENDING: IG report indicates James Comey lied about Steele dossier
But Graham insisted Horowitz's evidence, put in context, shows the bureau's lead investigators abused their power in an effort "to get Donald Trump."
The senator began by emphasizing that "two central characters in this debacle" -- handpicked by Deputy Director Andrew McCabe -- were supervisory FBI agent Peter Strzok and his paramour Lisa Page, an FBI lawyer who worked for McCabe.
Graham read a number of the infamous text exchanges between the two that clearly demonstrated not only that they regarded Trump as "loathsome" but that they were on a mission to ensure he would not be elected.
On July 31, 2016, with the Operation Crossfire Hurricane counter-intelligence investigation already underway, Strzok wrote: "And damn this feels momentous. Because this matters. The [Clinton email probe] did, too, but that was to ensure we didn't F something up. This matters because this MATTERS. So super glad to be on this voyage with you.”
Graham turned to Horowitz's finding that a lawyer supervising the FISA process completely changed the meaning of a CIA email to the Justice Department and the FBI that would have stopped the effort to surveil Carter Page dead in its tracks.
The Steele dossier claimed Page met with three Russian agents. While wiretapped, Page said he had never met two of them. And the third he said he met in his capacity as a CIA informant.
The CIA email confirmed that Page, indeed, worked with the CIA. But Horowitz found that the lawyer -- known to be Kevin Kleinsmith -- changed the email to read that Page did not work for the CIA.
If the court had known, Graham pointed out, there would be a lawful reason for Page to meet with a Russian agent.
Kleinsmith's personal bias was shown in various tweets after Trump's election, writing, among other things, "the crazies won finally" and Vice President Mike Pence is "stupid."
In a Nov. 22 tweet to friends, he wrote, "Viva la resistance," echoing what has come to be known as the "resistance" against Trump.
"What are the odds that this guy might do something wrong?" Graham asked.
"If these are a few irregularities, the rule of law in our country is dead."
Turning back to the origin of the Obama FBI's probe, Graham acknowledged that there was a legitimate reason to open a counter-intelligence investigation into the broader subject of Russian interference in the election campaign.
Democrats have seized on Horowitz's conclusion that opening the probe was legitimate and that he found no "documentary or testimonial evidence of bias" influencing the decision.
Graham also acknowledged it would be legitimate to examine any Russian influence on the Trump campaign, with the primary aim of protecting it.
And if there was any nefarious contact with Russia by low-level volunteers such as Carter Page and George Papadopoulos, the Trump campaign should know about it.
Horowitz found, however, that the FBI never informed the Trump campaign of their suspicions.
Graham then recounted that the Strzok team applied internally for a warrant to surveil Carter Page in August 2016 but was told there was no probable cause.
So, according to the Horowitz report, on Sept. 19 the dubious Steele dossier was introduced into the warrant process.
Graham emphasized that Horowitz found -- contrary to the claims of former FBI Director James Comey and others -- that the dossier was "central" to the warrant application.
"Without this dossier they go nowhere," the senator said. "With it, they are off to the races."
'On a mission to get Donald Trump'
Graham noted the FISA court was not told that Steele was a retired British agent with a reputation for unreliability who was hired by a company funded by the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign to find dirt on Trump.
Senior Justice Department official Bruce Ohr has testified that Steele was desperate to prevent Trump from being elected.
"He was on a mission to get Donald Trump," Graham said. "Not only did he provide the dossier, he was shopping the dossier to media and politicians to see if they would print it."
When the FBI learned Steele was leaking, it "cut him loose." But a channel was maintained through Ohr, whose wife was employed by the company that hired Steele to produce the dossier, Fusion GPS.
'It gets worse'
In January 2017, the FBI learned that Steele's source for his anti-Trump dossier
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