Category Archives: Congress

Legal Irrational Exuberance? Turley on Devin Nunes, Lawrence Tribe and the law | Feb 15 2018

When Mania Goes Mainstream: Experts Claim Nunes Could Be Indicted Next

|| Jonathan Turley

“Below is my column in the Hill Newspaper on the recent column in the New York Times by Harvard Law Professor Lawrence Tribe and others that Devin Nunes could be charged with obstruction of justice. The column contains highly dubious uses of both history and precedent to advance this latest claim of criminality.  The ABA Journal and other papers have reported on the theory without any objective of its meritless foundation in constitutional law.  The basis for such claim is so attenuated as to border on the fanciful.   There are serious possible crimes being alleged without twisting the criminal code to go after supporters of President Trump.

For a year, some of us have questioned calls for the prosecution of President Trump for obstruction of justice. Every ill-conceived statement or tweet by Trump is proclaimed as “smoking gun” evidence of this seemingly catch-all crime. As the “resistance” to Trump grew, so did the expansion of the interpretation of the crime. It became increasingly more difficult to determine not what is obstruction but what is not obstruction. A recent column in the New York Times seems to have the answer: Prosecute them all and let God sort them out.

The column by Harvard Law School professor Lawrence Tribe, (right), American Constitution Society president Caroline Fredrickson and Brookings Institution fellow Norman Eisen argued that House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) could now join Trump in the criminal dock. His crime? Writing a memo alleging FBI abuses that was released by a vote of the majority of a committee overseeing the FBI.

The column entitled “Is Devin Nunes Obstructing Justice?” captures the distemper that has overtaken legal analysis. It appears that anyone deemed as supporting Trump can now be charged with the same nebulous crime. After all, if Trump is actively trying to obstruct a federal investigation, surely those who actively support him or oppose the investigation are no less guilty of the same offense.It is not that easy for federal courts, which traditionally follow the opposite inclination under the “rule of lenity.” Courts tend to not only define criminal laws narrowly but rule in favor of defendants in areas of ambiguity. These and other experts appear to view ambiguity as an invitation for creativity in finding ways to indict Trump. There is a real danger to civil liberties by the continuing effort to endlessly expand criminal definitions. Trump will not be our last president and these new overarching definitions will remain with us as a type of unpaid bill. It will be citizens who pay that legal bill.

The latest obstruction claim asserts that “by writing and releasing the memo, the chairman may just have landed himself, and his staff members, in the middle of Robert Mueller’s obstruction of justice investigation.” Of course, there is the obvious complication of the immunity afforded to members of Congress under the Speech and Debate Clause of Article I.

In Gravel v. United States, the Supreme Court reaffirmed this immunity for not just members but staff after Sen. Mike Gravel (D-Alaska) read portions of the Pentagon Papers before a congressional committee. Ironically, Gravel was supporting the New York Times, which first published the papers in defiance of the Nixon administration.

While acknowledging the “strong bulwark” of immunity, the authors work mightily to limit the possible use of immunity, including some creative use of history. For example, they note that the Supreme Court did not extend immunity as far as Gravel’s publication of the papers in a later book. However, the court supported the immunity over the disclosure through the committee.

If anything, Nunes is in a much stronger position than Gravel. Nunes did not unilaterally release the memo like Gravel and he did so in a committee with direct oversight of the FBI. Conversely, the Pentagon Papers were read at an entirely unrelated subcommittee on buildings and grounds of the Senate Public Works Committee.

It is equally dubious to suggest that the memo may be found to have “mere peripheral connection to legislative acts” or a pure political act to deny immunity. The basis for this claim is simply that the authors and Democrats disagree with the conclusions of the memo. No competent federal judge would rule that such a memo is unrelated to the legislative purpose of oversight over the FBI

Even more bizarrely, there was this warning: “Nunes would do well to remember what befell Senator Daniel Brewster of Maryland.” Nunes would be understandably confused by the historical reference. Brewster claimed immunity over the acceptance of alleged bribes. This facially ridiculous argument was rejected by the Supreme Court, though Brewster was later acquitted of bribery and had the remaining convictions overturned on other grounds.

Where experts argued for months about the dubious crime of “collusion” with the Russians, these experts are now arguing for a crime of “collaboration” with the White House. The idea is that, if Nunes or his staff coordinated in the issuance of the memo, they could be charged for casting doubt on the conduct of the FBI in the early investigation of the Russian matter.

The suggestion of an obstruction case against Nunes reduces the criminal code to a virtual professorial parlor game. For a year, experts have assured eager (if not desperate) audiences that a criminal case against Trump is now in sight. For example, Tribe and Eisen have been alleging a host of unlawful acts, including a lawsuit alleging unconstitutional emoluments that was thrown out by a federal judge in December.”

….Continue reading more @ Jonathan Turley

Feinstein linked to ‘fake’ Steele Dossier Scandal | Feb 13 2018

Intriguing Links Emerge In GOP Led Dossier Investigation

|| Daily Caller

“The Republican-led investigation into the infamous anti-Trump dossier has recently revealed several intriguing links between Christopher Steele, lawyers, lobbyists, Democratic politicians, a former State Department official, and a Russian oligarch close to Vladimir Putin.

Most of the revelations come thanks to Sen. Chuck Grassley. The Iowa Republican released a letter in January that cited the names of several political operatives and lawyers who had not previously been linked to the dossier Steele wrote while on the payroll of the Clinton campaign and DNC.

And Thursday, a batch of text messages leaked to Fox News revealed that Steele used a back channel to communicate with Democratic Virginia Sen. Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.

Oleg Deripaska, a Russian aluminum magnate who is allied with Putin, is party to several of the connections. The billionaire has also worked closely in the past with former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort.

The Steele connections are being investigated by the Senate Judiciary Committee, which Grassley chairs, and the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. The implications of the contacts remain to be seen, but they are worth watching as the investigation into the dossier goes on.

Lobbyist back channel between Warner and Steele 

Adam Waldman, a Washington, D.C., lobbyist who works for Deripaska, emerged on the scene out of nowhere last week when Fox News published a batch of text messages he exchanged in 2017 with Warner.

Waldman first approached Warner in March 2017 seeking to discuss a possible extradition deal for Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.

Waldman, who owns Endeavor Law Firm, also represented that he had ties to Steele as well as to Deripaska.

“Chris Steele asked me to call you,” Waldman wrote to Warner on March 17, 2017.

Warner attempted to set up a phone call with Steele and suggested that he wanted to keep the matter a secret from other members of the Senate Intelligence Committee. But the negotiations appeared to end in May because Waldman said that Steele was reluctant to meet without a letter signed both by Warner and North Carolina Sen. Richard Burr, the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

“Seems very weird that he won’t do a call. What wud a letter do to deal with his concerns,” Warner wrote in late April.

Waldman sent several text messages over the following weeks, but Warner did not reply.

Waldman’s relationship to Steele is odd because of his work for Deripaska as well as for Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov. (RELATED: Steele’s Back Channel To Democratic Senator Was Lobbyist For Russia’s Foreign Minister)

Deripaska hired Waldman in 2009 to help him with a struggle over his visa, which the State Department revoked in 2006 because of alleged ties to Russian mobsters.

Waldman registered as a foreign agent in 2010 after signing on to work for Lavrov to help with the Deripaska visa problem. That relationship ended in May.

In his texts, Waldman suggested to Warner that he was in touch with the Justice Department regarding Deripaska.

“Deripaska is in London Monday-Thursday and I might be able to arrange a mtg w him too if you wish. I discussed it with him today and he seemed interested,” Waldman wrote.

He also suggested making Deripaska available for an interview with the Senate Intelligence Committee. Those talks later broke down because the committee declined to give Deripaska immunity.

Waldman has not responded to numerous requests for comment about his relationship to Steele.

A second Steele-Warner back channel?  

One name recently linked to the dossier is Daniel Jones, a former investigator for Democratic California Sen. Dianne Feinstein when she chaired the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Jones was named in the January letter that Grassley sent to Clinton campaign and DNC officials seeking communications with a list of people linked to the dossier. Jones, who worked for Feinstein until Dec. 2015, also appears to have links to Steele as well as to Warner.

In his text messages with Warner, Waldman wrote that “[Steele] said he will also speak w Dan Jones whom he says is talking to you.”

“I pointed out there is no privilege in that discussion although Dan is a good and very trustworthy guy,” he added later.

“I encouraged him to engage with you for the sake of the truth and of vindication of the dossier,” added Waldman.

“[Steele] said Dan Jones is coming to see you,” Waldman wrote later. “I suggest you explain to Dan why a call is the necessary first step rather than a letter from your perspective.”

Jones, who operates the Penn Quarter Group, a consulting firm, did not respond to a voice mail or private message on Twitter.”

….Continue reading @ Daily Caller

Democrats Like Speier Criticize Security Breaches, Yet Ignore their own in Awan Bros Scandal | Feb 04 2018

Intel Committee Dems ‘Dangerous,’ ‘Negligent’ In Handling Of Breach By Their Own IT Aide

|| Daily Caller

“Three Democrats on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence have been “dangerous” and “negligent” by seemingly failing to react to evidence of a major security breach by their own IT aides, a former Air Force colonel and career intelligence staffer charged. In light of this, he told The Daily Caller News Foundation, their concerns on committee Republicans voting to release a classified memo ring hollow.

The House inspector general found that a family of Pakistanis working for Democrats made “unauthorized access” to House servers, logging in using members’ personal usernames, covering their tracks, and continuing to access servers even after efforts to stop them. The IG found evidence that data from 17 members may have been funneled onto one server, which law enforcement said was later physically stolen.

Intelligence committee members Democratic Reps. Joaquin Castro of Texas, Andre Carson of Indiana, and Jackie Speier of California employed the aides until they were banned from the network in February 2017. Castro and Speier both said they did not know of any cybersecurity breach, but then they refused to respond when TheDCNF revealed two reports by the House’s internal investigator that showed there was a breach.

“As a member you have an obligation and a responsibility to know. To say you don’t know is a cop-out and excuse. You had no interest in it nor did you care about safeguarding official government documents,” James Waurishuk, a retired Air Force colonel, senior career strategic intelligence officer and National Security Council staffer, told TheDCNF. People with clearances, he said, are obligated to proactively find and report threats.

One of the aides, Imran Awan, had a secret email address — 123@mail.house.gov — that was set up in the name of an intelligence specialist who works for Carson. The secret address remained active after Imran’s main account was blocked. In August, TheDCNF discovered in civil court documents that the address actually belonged to Imran, and alerted Carson’s office of the vulnerability. Carson spokeswoman Jessica Gail did not openly express any alarm.

“Where someone has knowledge that something wasn’t right and rather than make an issue of it — the individual was a friend or someone they had to deal with every day and they wanted to turn a blind eye — in the end it winds up catching both of them,” Waurishuk told TheDCNF. “If you fail to follow the necessary procedures, then depending on the level, people go to jail for that.”

Democrats are “outraged over publishing the memo in accordance with House rules, yet they have nothing to say at all about major security breaches by a staffer they themselves employed,”a Republican intel committee source told TheDCNF on background because the person was not authorized to comment. “Their level of concern about information security issues obviously depends on that issue’s political ramifications for themselves and their party.”

Ranking Member of the intelligence committee Democrat Adam Schiff has attacked the GOP for voting to release a classified memo Republicans say shows abuses of spying authority. Democrats charge Republicans are showing a disregard for security procedures. Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said committee Chairman Devin Nunes “has disgraced the House Intelligence Committee.” Republicans say the document contains information that Americans have a right to know about.

The Awans were banned from the House network in February but not arrested. Yet in April, Awan was in a House office building at midnight and left a government laptop with the username RepDWS in a decommissioned phone booth.

“With these three members on intel with this whole investigation going on with FISA and unmasking, did these individuals have any access to that info?” Waurishuk asked of that incident and the active email address tied to Carson’s office. “I’d like to see Schiff briefed on this and see what he knows about it.”

….Continue reading more @ Daily Caller

Rep. Ted Lieu Hiring of Pakistani Awan Bros Compromised U.S. National Security | Nov 15 2017

Jonathan Turley on the Nunes Memo | Feb 04 2018

Outcry over the Nunes memo is damning for Democrats and FBI

|| theHill.com | Jonathan Turley

“The release of the four-page memo by the House Intelligence Committee has triggered preset responses from both sides. The memo is, in fact, enlightening in a number of respects. However, the most alarming elements may be what it does not contain.

First, it is important to start with what we previously knew. At the heart of this controversy is the dossier that was compiled by Christopher Steele, a former British spy, and Fusion GPS with funding from Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Committee. Previously, Clinton’s top campaign lawyer, Marc Elias, and former campaign chairman, John Podesta, denied any connection to the dossier. After news stores confirmed the funding, Elias and Clinton herself admitted that they did fund this effort.

Second, we knew that Steele shopped the information in the dossier to various reporters to try to get them published during the election. Third, the contents of this dossier were so unverified that virtually all of the reporters declined to run the story during the campaign.

The memo confirms that top FBI officials, including former director James Comey and his deputy Andrew McCabe, used the dossier to secure secret surveillance targeting a U.S. citizen. That citizen was Carter Page, an aide to the presidential candidate of the party opposing the Obama administration. Comey signed off on multiple Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) applications targeting Page.

The memo states that the applications never mentioned that the dossier was funded in significant part by the Clinton campaign, even though high-ranking officials knew about that funding. That would obviously be highly material to judging the value of the information. To make matters worse, Steele admitted to FBI agent Bruce Orr, who was later demoted, that he hated Trump and was “desperate that not be elected and was passionate about his not being president.”

….Continue reading at The Hill

 

 

 

Nunes Memo Released by President Trump | Cites 1970’s law for releasing classified information | Feb 02 2018

FACT CHECK: Read The GOP Memo Released By House Intelligence Committee

|| NPR

“A memo alleging the FBI abused its surveillance authority became public on Friday after a push by House Republicans. President Trump authorized the memo’s release, even after the FBI expressed “grave concerns” about the “accuracy” of the document, authored by House intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif.

NPR journalists who cover the Justice Department, the White House and national security have annotated the White House’s authorization letter and the memo itself.

January 18, 2018
Declassified by order of the President on February 2, 2018
To: HPSCI Majority Members
From: HPSCI Majority Staff

The Nunes memo, as it has come to be known, was compiled by members of the Republican staff on the House intelligence committee. On Monday, the committee voted along party lines to release the memo.

Subject: Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Abuses at the Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation

Purpose

This memorandum provides Members an update on significant facts relating to the Committee’s ongoing investigation into the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and their use of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) during the 2016 presidential election cycle. Our findings, which are detailed below, 1) raise concerns with the legitimacy and legality of certain DOJ and FBI interactions with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC), and 2) represent a troubling breakdown of legal processes established to protect the American people from abuses related to the FISA process.

Investigation Update

On October 21, 2016, DOJ and FBI sought and received a FISA probable cause order (not under Title VII) authorizing electronic surveillance on Carter Page from the FISC. Page is a U.S. citizen who served as a volunteer advisor to the Trump presidential campaign. Consistent with requirements under FISA, the application had to be first certified by the Director or Deputy Director of the FBI. It then required the approval of the Attorney General, Deputy Attorney General (DAG), or the Senate-confirmed Assistant Attorney General for the National Security Division.

The FBI and DOJ obtained one initial FISA warrant targeting Carter Page and three FISA renewals from the FISC. As required by statute (50 U.S.C. §1805(d)(1)), a FISA order on an American citizen must be renewed by the FISC every 90 days and each renewal requires a separate finding of probable cause. Then-Director James Comey signed three FISA applications in question on behalf of the FBI, and Deputy Director Andrew McCabe signed one. Then-DAG Sally Yates, then-Acting DAG Dana Boente, and DAG Rod Rosenstein each signed one or more FISA applications on behalf of DOJ.

Due to the sensitive nature of foreign intelligence activity, FISA submissions (including renewals) before the FISC are classified. As such, the public’s confidence in the integrity of the FISA process depends on the court’s ability to hold the government to the highest standard ­— particularly as it relates to surveillance of American citizens. However, the FISC’s rigor in protecting the rights of Americans, which is reinforced by 90-day renewals of surveillance orders, is necessarily dependent on the government’s production to the court of all material and relevant facts. This should include information potentially favorable to the target of the FISA application that is known by the government. In the case of Carter Page, the government had at least four independent opportunities before the FISC to accurately provide an accounting of the relevant facts. However, our findings indicate that, as described below, material and relevant information was omitted.

1) The “dossier” compiled by Christopher Steele (Steele dossier) on behalf of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Hillary Clinton campaign formed an essential part of the Carter Page FISA application. Steele was a longtime FBI source who was paid over $160,000 by the DNC and Clinton campaign, via the law firm Perkins Coie and research firm Fusion GPS, to obtain derogatory information on Donald Trump’s ties to Russia.

  1. Neither the initial application in October 2016, nor any of the renewals, disclose or reference the role of the DNC, Clinton campaign, or any party/campaign in funding Steele’s efforts, even though the political origins of the Steele dossier were then known to senior DOJ and FBI officials.
  2. The initial FISA application notes Steele was working for a named U.S. person, but does not name Fusion GPS and principal Glenn Simpson, who was paid by a U.S. law firm (Perkins Coie) representing the DNC (even though it was known by DOJ at the time that political actor were involved with the Steele dossier). The application does not mention Steele was ultimately working on behalf of — and paid by — the DNC and Clinton campaign, or that the FBI had separately authorized payment to Steele for the same information.

2) The Carter Page FISA application also cited extensively a September 23, 2016, Yahoo News article by Michael Isikoff, which focuses on Page’s July 2016 trip to Moscow. This article does not corroborate the Steele dossier because it is derived from information leaked by Steele himself to Yahoo News. The Page FISA application incorrectly assesses that Steele did not directly provide information to Yahoo News. Steele has admitted in British court filings that he met with Yahoo News — and several other outlets — in September 2016 at the direction of Fusion GPS. Perkins Coie was aware of Steele’s initial media contacts because they hosted at least one meeting in Washington D.C. in 2016 with Steele and Fusion GPS where this matter was discussed.”

…..Continue reading more @ NPR with NPR commentary on the memo

Comey, Yates, McCabe, Rosenstein All Signed Off On Misleading FISA Applications

|| Daily Caller

“A number of top FBI and Justice Department officials neglected to provide essential information to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) when applying for a warrant to surveil former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, according to the House Intelligence Committee memo produced Friday.

The memo states that Former FBI Director James Comey, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, former Deputy Director of the FBI Andrew McCabe, and former Attorney General Sally Yates were all required to sign off on the FISC warrant application before it was reviewed and ultimately approved.

“As required by statute (50 U.S.C.), a FISA order on an American citizen must be renewed by the ISC every 90 days and each renewal requires a separate finding of probable cause. Then-Director James Comey signed three FISA applications in question on behalf of the FBI, and Deputy Director Andrew McCabe signed one. Sally Yates, then-Acting DAG Dana Boente, and DAG Rod Rosenstein each signed one or more FISA applications,” the memo reads.

The memo further claims those officials were aware at the time of their signing that the unsubstantiated Steele opposition research dossier, which was included to bolster their warrant application, was paid for by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Clinton campaign; but the application did not include that information.

While the memo asserts the dossier was used in the initial warrant application, it does not specify if it was used in the three successive applications to extend the warrant, which must be filed every 90 days and must include new evidence to support probable cause. The aforementioned four senior agents signed off at various points throughout the roughly one year Page was under surveillance.

The importance of the infamous Steele dossier is demonstrated clearly in the memo, which cites McCabe as having testified that the warrant to surveil Page would not have been approved without the politically funded opposition research.

“Furthermore, Deputy Director McCabe testified before the Committee in December 2017 that no surveillance warrant would have been sought from the FISC without the Steele dossier information”

President Donald Trump indicated he was open to the possibility of firing Rosenstein due to his role in failing to disclose the political funding behind the salacious Steele dossier on the FBI’s FISC warrant application.

“Does it make you more likely to fire Rosenstein? Do you still have confidence in him?” Trump was asked by reporters in the oval office Friday after the highly anticipated memo was released.

“You figure that one out,” Trump responded, according to the White House press pool.”

…Continue reading more @ Daily Caller

 

 

New Charges, Arrests for Sanctuary City Politicians? | Jan 16 2018

 DHS Recommends Arrests For Sanctuary City Leaders

|| Daily Caller

“Homeland Security Sec. Kirstjen Nielsen confirmed on Tuesday that her agency has asked the Justice Department to look into policies that would allow for criminal charges against elected leaders who refuse to enforce federal immigration laws.

During a Senate Judiciary Committee oversight hearing, Nielsen said that a request has been submitted to DOJ for consideration.

“The Department of Justice is reviewing what avenues might be available,” Nielsen told California Sen. Kamala Harris.

Harris had asked Nielsen about comments made recently by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Director Tom Homan.”

….Continue reading more @ Daily Caller

 

 

 

Illegal Immigration Advocate Rep. Luis Gutierrez to leave Congress | Nov 28 2017

Rep. Luis Gutierrez to retire from Congress, sources say

|| Chicago Sun-Times

 

“Signaling the end to a quarter century career in Congress, Rep. Luis Gutierrez will announce Tuesday that he will not seek re-election, Democratic sources tell the Chicago Sun-Times.

The Northwest Side Democrat has been one of the more high-profile Latino politicians in the country, advocating forcefully for immigrant rights, since he became a U.S. representative 25 years ago.

Gutierrez, 63, planned to make his retirement announcement Tuesday in Chicago, the sources said.

He has a news conference scheduled for Tuesday afternoon at Maggiano’s Little Italy restaurant.

The sources added that Cook County Commissioner Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, D-Chicago, likely will run to succeed Gutierrez in next year’s election with Gutierrez’s endorsement. The sources said 22nd Ward Ald. Ricardo Muñoz was expected to run to replace Garcia on the Cook County Board of Commissioners.

Gutierrez and Garcia are scheduled to appear at a campaign kickoff event for Garcia at Mi Tierra restaurant in Little Village — Garcia’s neighborhood — at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

Neither Gutierrez and Garcia returned calls seeking comment Monday.”

…..Continue reading more @ Chicago Sun-Times

 

Amnesty Champion Rep. Luis Gutierrez Quitting Congress, Says Chicago TV Station

|| Breitbart

“The Democrats’ leading pro-amnesty legislator, Chicago Rep. Luis Gutierrez, is quitting Congress, according to a Chicago TV station, NBC 5.

The station reported Monday evening:

NBC 5 has learned congressman Luis Gutierrez will announce Tuesday he is not running for re-election after 24 years on Capitol Hill, sources say. Guitterez telephoned key democratic leaders late this afternoon to let them know of his plans. Calls to Guitterez tonight have not been returned.

Gutierrez’s departure comes as his allies recognize the sinking prospects in 2017 for a no-strings “clean Dream Act” for 3 million illegals, including the 690,000 ‘DACA’ beneficiaries

In 2013 and 2014, Gutierrez was the leading Democratic pushing for House approval of the unpopular “Gang of Eight” amnesty-and-cheap-labor act.

For example, he worked closely with Rep. Paul Ryan to fashion a secret amnesty bill — even though the amnesty push was so unpopular that it cost Chuck Schumer nine Democratic seats plus the Senate majority in November 2014.

But Gutierrez’s 2017 push for a December amnesty is being blocked by hostile polls, Donald Trump’s immigration principles, top-level GOP opposition and tepid backroom support from Democrats.

For example, an amnesty for young illegals is a “top priority” for only 23 percent of American voters who identify as Independents, says a November poll by Morning Consult and Politico. The no-strings amnesty was strongly opposed by 16 percent in the November survey, and likely by many of the 23 percent of people who say they have no comment or don’t know.

Also, a November 27 report by the McClatchy news service included an admission by an amnesty proponent that the push for a December amnesty is losing ground:

“Two months have now passed, and I’m sad to report that we’re arguably further away from a solution today than we were then,” said Neil Bradley, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s chief policy officer.

….Continue reading more @ Breitbart

 

ANOTHER ONE! Dem Congressman Arranged Secret “Severance Package” For Staffer Over Misconduct Claims

|| theGatewayPundit

“Yet another Democrat Congressman is embroiled in a hush fund scandal. This time the lawmaker in question is Democrat Rep. Raul M. Grijalva.

The Arizona lawmaker arranged a “severance package” in 2015 for a staffer threatening a lawsuit claiming Grijalva was frequently drunk and created a hostile workplace environment.

Washington Times reports:

Rep. Raul M. Grijalva quietly arranged a “severance package” in 2015 for one of his top staffers who threatened a lawsuit claiming the Arizona Democrat was frequently drunk and created a hostile workplace environment, revealing yet another way that lawmakers can use taxpayer dollars to hide their misbehavior on Capitol Hill.

While the Office of Compliance has been the focus of outrage on Capitol Hill for hush-money payouts in sexual harassment cases, the Grijalva payout points to another office that lawmakers can use to sweep accusations under the rug with taxpayer-funded settlements negotiated by the House Employment Counsel, which acts as the attorney for all House offices.

The employment counsel negotiated a deal for taxpayers to give $48,395 — five additional months’ salary — to the female aide, who left her job after three months. She didn’t pursue the hostile workplace complaint further.

 

“On the advice of House Employment Counsel, I provided a severance package to a former employee who resigned. The severance did not involve the Office of Compliance and at no time was any allegation of sexual harassment made, and no sexual harassment occurred,” Rep. Grijalva stated to The Washington Times.

“Under the terms of the agreement, had there been an allegation of sexual harassment, the employee would have been free to report it. Regrettably, for me to provide any further details on this matter would violate the agreement,” Grijalva added.

That makes two new Capitol Hill Democrats that are now embroiled in misconduct scandals this week.

Rep. Al Green (D-TX) is under fire following reports he had sex with a drug-addicted staffer and then sued her after she threatened to go public with the encounter. Green is one of the loudest voices on Capitol Hill calling for President Trump to be impeached.”

….Continue reading more @ TGP