The Watergate scandal of 1972–74 was uncovered largely because of outraged Democratic politicians and a bulldog media. They both claimed that they had saved American democracy from the Nixon administration’s attempt to warp the CIA and FBI to cover up an otherwise minor, though illegal, political break-in.
In the Iran-Contra affair of 1985–87, the media and liberal activists uncovered wrongdoing by some rogue members of the Reagan government. They warned of government overreach and of using the “Deep State” to subvert the law for political purposes.
We are now in the middle of a third great modern scandal. Members of the Obama administration’s Department of Justice sought court approval for the surveillance of Carter Page, allegedly for colluding with Russian interests, and extended the surveillance three times.
But none of these government officials told the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court that the warrant requests were based on an unverified dossier that had originated as a hit piece funded in part by the Hillary Clinton campaign to smear Donald Trump during the current 2016 campaign.
Nor did these officials reveal that the author of the dossier, Christopher Steele, had already been dropped as a reliable source by the FBI for leaking to the press.
Nor did officials add that a Department of Justice official, Bruce Ohr, had met privately with Steele — or that Ohr’s wife, Nellie, had been hired to work on the dossier.
Unfortunately, such disclosures may be only the beginning of the FISA-gate scandal.
Members of the Obama administration’s national-security team also may have requested the names of American citizens connected with the Trump campaign who had been swept up in other FISA surveillance. Those officials may have then improperly unmasked the names and leaked them to a compliant press — again, for apparent political purposes during a campaign.
As a result of various controversies, the deputy director of the FBI, Andrew McCabe, has resigned. Two FBI officials who had been working on special counsel Robert Mueller’s team in the so-called Russia collusion probe, Lisa Page and Peter Strzok, have been reassigned for having an improper relationship and for displaying overt political biases in text messages to each other.
The new FBI director, Christopher Wray, has also reassigned the FBI’s top lawyer, James Baker, who purportedly leaked the Steele dossier to a sympathetic journalist.
How does FISA-gate compare to Watergate and Iran-Contra?
Once again, an administration is being accused of politicizing government agencies to further agendas, this time apparently to gain an advantage for Hillary Clinton in the run-up to an election.
There is also the same sort of government resistance to releasing documents under the pretext of “national security.”
There is a similar pattern of slandering congressional investigators and whistleblowers as disloyal and even treasonous.
There is the rationale that just as the Watergate break-in was a two-bit affair, Carter Page was a nobody.
Right! Well Said.
But the Press has been anti America since at least 1950. Maybe before then; but I was too little to understand bigots in ’49. Had Ronnie been president. And had he used “the Intelligence Agencies” to spy on Duke for George the Press would be spending at least 15 min. Every hour on FISA! But sine it was done by D’s the Press is working overtime to hide it!
Well, according to progressives anyway. In reality they are the leading offenders.
Democrats would never have been so bold and relatively open about their subversion attempts if an objective media existed. Democrats have relied for a long time on the media to bury their corruption, explain their lies and attack their opposition so they feel absolutely protected as they undercut the Constitution.