- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 28, 2019

As Wednesday’s explosive Michael Cohen hearing illustrated, a number of Clinton-Obama figures have been instigators in the Justice Department’s 33-month-long Russia probe of President Trump and his family.

Attorney Lanny Davis sat behind former Trump attorney Cohen, whispering in his ear during his accusation-filled House testimony. Mr. Davis, Cohen’s closest adviser, is a consummate Bill and Hillary Clinton loyalist, having served as their counsel and spokesman. He has been a source for anti-Trump news stories. His book, “The Unmaking of the President 2016,” calls for Congress to remove the president.

Mr. Davis is not alone among Clinton-Obama supporters working to oust Mr. Trump, some in the shadows. They have operated at the Justice Department and in political operations, as well as in opposition research, public relations and law firms.

“The ‘deep state’ are Obama-Clinton partisans,” said Tom Fitton, who directs the conservative investigative group Judicial Watch.

Clinton and Obama supporters started and sustained Trump-Russia collusion theories. Their centerpiece is the anti-Trump dossier funded by Mrs. Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic Party. Its conspiracy charges fueled much of the collusion talk from Rep. Adam Schiff, California Democrat and chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, who continues his hunt today.

“Today a convicted liar sponsored by Lanny Davis illustrates the heart of the dossier,” John Dowd, Mr. Trump’s former defense attorney, told The Washington Times. “The truth is irrelevant as Schiff so ably demonstrated by reading it into the record in 2017.”

Two fiery Trump opponents/Clinton supporters — FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI counsel Lisa Page — orchestrated the Russia probe in the summer of 2016.

Another pro-Hillary Clinton insider, Justice Department lawyer Bruce Ohr, became the agent for Mrs. Clinton’s opposition research army. During the campaign and after, Mr. Ohr ferried their allegations directly to the FBI hierarchy, including Deputy Director Andrew McCabe and Mr. Strzok.

Two key warriors on the staff of special counsel Robert Mueller are Clinton supporters: Andrew Weissmann is a Democratic Party donor who attended what was supposed to be Mrs. Clinton’s victory party in New York. Jeannie Rhee has represented Mrs. Clinton and her billion-dollar family foundation.

Another senior prosecutor, Andrew D. Goldstein, contributed to Barack Obama’s presidential campaign. Mr. Goldstein worked in Manhattan under then-U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, an Obama appointee and a protege of Sen. Charles Schumer, New York Democrat.

Mr. Goldstein contributed $2,550 to Mr. Obama in 2008, according to federal records. In 2012, while an assistant U.S. attorney in New York, he gave $750 to Mr. Obama’s reelection.

Mr. Bharara, whom Mr. Trump fired as U.S. attorney in Manhattan, has become a Twitter cheerleader for his legacy team of prosecutors investigating the president in the Justice Department’s Southern District of New York.

A Clinton-Obama scorecard:

⦁ Mrs. Clinton’s opposition research firm, Fusion GPS, orchestrated the infamous Christopher Steele dossier. It alleged a series of felony charges against Mr. Trump and his people. Clinton operatives sought to directly influence the State Department, the Justice Department and the FBI.

No dossier charge has been proven publicly. Republicans call it a hoax.

⦁ According to an FBI interview report, Fusion GPS was hired by an ex-staffer of Sen. Dianne Feinstein, California Democrat, to continue investigating Mr. Trump. Democratic donors chipped in $50 million.

Fusion co-founder Glenn Simpson advocated stories that the National Rifle Association has been infiltrated by the Kremlin. He promoted the story that former Trump attorney Cohen traveled to Prague as part of an election-year coverup. Both narratives have shown up in McClatchy News service stories. Cohen on Wednesday for the umpteenth time denied going to Prague.

⦁ The Manhattan U.S. attorney’s office has become Mr. Trump’s main threat. It won the guilty pleas from Cohen. He implicated candidate Trump in a possible campaign finance violation by using Trump money to pay off two women who say they had affairs with Mr. Trump.

The office is filled with acolytes of Mr. Bharara, the former prosecutor whose Twitter account is a steady stream of Trump attacks. On Cohen’s sentencing memo, which laid out his crimes, were the signatures of four former Bharara colleagues: Andrea M. Griswold, Rachel Maimin, Thomas McKay and Nicolas Roos.

The day after they filed their memo, Mr. Bharara tweeted: “The brilliant and dedicated professional ‘kids’ of the SDNY are among our best hopes for survival of the rule of law. We should be thanking them for their public service, not attacking them for doing their jobs.”

When Cohen’s opening House committee statement was released Tuesday night, Mr. Bharara tweeted: “With all due caveats, Michael Cohen’s prepared testimony is stunning.”

⦁ Fired by Mr. Trump, former FBI Director James B. Comey, an Obama appointee, leaked his memos-for-the-record to trigger a special prosecutor. He also bragged at a book event that he outmaneuvered the new Trump White House. He sent two agents to interview then-National Security Adviser Michael Flynn without clearing the interview with the White House counsel.

⦁ Like his one-time boss, Mr. Comey, former acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe is out with an anti-Trump memoir. He is also under investigation by the U.S. attorney’s office in Washington, D.C., on a referral from the Justice Department inspector general.

Mr. McCabe’s defense attorney is Michael R. Bromwich. He is a former Obama political appointee who worked on the defense team of Christine Blasey Ford, the chief accuser of Trump U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett M. Kavanaugh.

Mr. McCabe’s public relations handler is Melissa Schwartz, who is Mr. Bromwich’s chief operating officer at his legal/communications firm. She worked alongside Mr. Bromwich in the Obama administration. On Capitol Hill, she served as communications director for Sen. Barbara Mikulski, Maryland Democrat.

Mr. McCabe has links to the Clinton machine: His wife ran for the Virginia Senate in 2015 with money from then-Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s political action committee. Mr. McAuliffe is a longtime Clinton loyalist, and his PAC was funded with Clinton associate contributions.

⦁ Clinton agents Sidney Blumenthal and Cody Shearer developed their own anti-Trump dossier. They fed it through the Obama State Department, and it ended up with the FBI. Mr. Steele fed his allegations to the same places.

⦁ House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, New York Democrat, has brought in a special anti-Trump legal team: Norman Eisen was Mr. Obama’s ethics lawyer inside the White House. He has castigated Mr. Trump at his post at Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW). Barry Berke, a New York white-collar defense lawyer, has joined Mr. Eisen in writing anti-Trump columns, such as the Dec. 12 CNN article “Trump’s ‘no smoking gun’ defense won’t protect him.”

They suggest that known contacts between Trump people and Russians add up to an election conspiracy.

Mr. Berke has been an active Democratic donor for 20 years, Federal Election Commission records show. He has contributed to a who’s who of Democrats — Mr. Obama, Mrs. Clinton, John Kerry, former Vice President Joe Biden, Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine, New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, New Jersey Sen. Corey Booker and others.

Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, ranking Republican on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said Lanny Davis pushed Wednesday’s hearing on a reluctant chairman, Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, Maryland Democrat.

“This is the Michael Cohen hearing presented by Lanny Davis,” he said. “That’s right. Lanny Davis choreographed the whole darn thing.

Mr. Jordan described what he sees as a Clinton conspiracy: “I’ll say one thing about the Democrats, they stick to the playbook. Remember how all this started. The Clinton campaign hired Perkins Coie law firm, who hired Glenn Simpson, who hired a foreigner — Christopher Steele — who put together the fake dossier that the FBI used to go get a warrant to spy on the Trump campaign.

“But when that whole scheme failed and the American people said, ‘We’re going to make Donald Trump president,’ they said, ‘We got to do something else.’ So now, Clinton loyalist/Clinton operative Lanny Davis has persuaded the chairman of the Oversight Committee to give a convicted felon a forum to tell stories and lie about the president of the United States so they can all start their impeachment process.”

• Rowan Scarborough can be reached at rscarborough@washingtontimes.com.

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