Then-FBI Director James Comey indicated in a December 2016 email that then-CIA Director John Brennan insisted on including the debunked, anti-Trump dossier funded by the Hillary Clinton campaign in the Intelligence Community report concluding Russia interfered in the 2016 election.
Fox News investigative journalist Catherine Herridge, citing sources familiar with the email, reported Wednesday the dossier was described as “crown material.”
This week, Attorney General William Barr appointed U.S. Attorney John Durham to investigate the origins of the charge of Trump campaign collusion with Russia. The claim led to a nearly two-year, $35 million special counsel probe that threatened the Trump presidency, damaged his administration and Republicans politically, and set back their agenda.
Former Republican congressman Trey Gowdy said in a Fox News interview Tuesday night that he’s seen the Comey email.
“Brennan and Comey, the only thing they seem to share is a hatred for Donald Trump,” he said. “It’s going to be interesting if they begin to turn on one another.”
Gowdy said Comey has “a better argument than Brennan, based on what I’ve seen.”
But Herridge said a former CIA official, speaking on background, blamed Comey for the inclusion of the dossier in the Intelligence Community Assessment.
“Former Director Brennan, along with (former Director of National Intelligence) James Clapper, are the ones who opposed James Comey’s recommendation that the Steele dossier be included in the intelligence report,” the source said.
The former CIA official noted it was Comey’s decision to brief the then-president-elect on the dossier.
Herridge said that after multiple requests, Comey’s lawyer provided no response to Fox News.
Paul Sperry reported Wednesday for RealClearInvestigations that Durham’s investigation is an inter-agency effort, working closely with CIA Director Gina Haspel, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and FBI Director Christopher Wray regarding spying on the Trump campaign.
Sperry reported in December Brennan may have perjured himself when he testified to
Congress in May 2017 that the dossier was not included in the Intelligence Community Assessment.
“John Brennan did more than anyone to promulgate the dirty dossier,” an investigator told Sperry. “He politicized and effectively weaponized what was false intelligence against Trump.”
Michael Isikoff, whose reporting citing dossier author Christopher was used by the Obama administration in a circular fashion to verify the contents of the dossier, interviewed former FBI chief counsel James Baker on Wednesday.
Baker said senior FBI officials were concerned that Comey would appear to be blackmailing Trump when he briefed the then-president-elect on the salacious claim in the dossier that he had consorted with prostitutes in Moscow.
“We were quite worried about the Hoover analogies,” Baker said, referring to FBI Director James Edgar Hoover, “and we were determined not to have such a disaster happen on our watch.”
Baker told the Yahoo News podcast Skullduggery that he and Comey determined the bureau had an obligation to tell Trump of the uncorroborated allegations because “the press has it; it’s about to come out.”
‘Working the Clinton gang to target President Trump’
On Wednesday, Judicial Watch released Justice Department emails showing former Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce Ohr and State Department official Kathleen Kavalec used Steele dossier material to target Trump after he won the 2016 election.
“I really hope we can get something going here,” Ohr wrote to Kavalec, referring to a Mother Jones article based on the dossier accusing Trump of taking campaign donations from a Russian oil magnate.
“These documents are a shocking example of the Deep State plotting against President Trump – just weeks after he was elected,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.
“There’s now no doubt that Bruce Ohr and the Obama State Department were working the Clinton gang to target President Trump.”
Meanwhile, Judicial Watch also has obtained an email from Ohr’s wife, Nellie Ohr, affirming that she destroyed emails relevant to the investigation of the now-debunked charges against Trump.
Nellie Ohr, at the time, worked for the opposition research firm that commissioned the dossier, Fusion GPS.
In the April 20, 2016, email with the subject line “Analyst Russian Organized Crime,” she writes to her husband: “Thanks! I’m deleting these emails now.”
Fitton said the email “is disturbing and suggests documents relevant to the improper targeting of President Trump were destroyed.”
Bruce Ohr eventually was demoted twice for working with dossier author Steele and promoting his bogus document.
The Gateway Pundit noted Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., criminally referred Nellie Ohr to the Justice Department after hundreds of emails surfaced that contradict her previous statements to Congress.
The emails indicate Nellie Ohr was funneling opposition research funded by the Clinton campaign to the Justice Department during the 2016 election through her husband.