By JD Heyes
Two questions emerged this week following revelations that the Deep State under President Obama inserted at least one, and possibly as many as seven, ‘spies’ into the 2016 campaign of Donald Trump:
What did Obama know about the operation? And: When did he know it?
Those two questions were first asked by Sen. Howard Baker, the lead Republican on the committee investigating the Nixon-era Watergate scandal.
It is as appropriate now for people to ask those questions of Obama as it was for Baker to ask them then — and perhaps even more so, because it looks as though the burgeoning “Spygate” scandal is going to be magnitudes of order larger than Watergate.
Pundits on the Left have tried to assure us that there’s no way Obama was in on anything because, you know, he was simply too virtuous to be caught up in something so sleazy and improper.
But Ari Fleischer, George W. Bush’s one-time spokesman, says Obama was up to his eyeballs in the scandal and even ordered the spying in the first place.
Fleischer made his bombshell claims on Fox News’ noon-time news program “Outnumbered,” according to investigative reporter Paul Sperry, who tweeted it.
“BREAKING: Bush press secretary Ari Fleischer said “I guarantee the answer is yes” to whether Obama knew Halper & others were deployed to spy on Trump campaign. Fleischer explained that no FBI director would put informants inside a presidential campaign w/o the prez authorizing it,” Sperry wrote.
BREAKING: Bush press secretary Ari Fleischer said “I guarantee the answer is yes” to whether Obama knew Halper & others were deployed to spy on Trump campaign. Fleischer explained that no FBI director would put informants inside a presidential campaign w/o the prez authorizing it
Fleischer would know this because he knows how administrations work. He knows that a president would never allow himself to be blindsided by something as major as spying on a rival political campaign — under the phony guise of “Russian collusion.”
So this would mean that Obama knew about everything — including the phony Russia “dossier” that Hillary Clinton’s campaign paid for, what was actually said at the now-infamous “Phoenix airport meeting” between former President Bill Clinton and Obama’s attorney general, Loretta Lynch. (Related: President Trump: “I think it’s going to be pretty obvious” that Obama likely knew about #Spygate (Video).)
There were earlier indicators as well that Obama was well aware of the operation to ensnare or trip-up Trump.
Counterintelligence exists to inform the president
As The National Sentinel reminded readers:
Remember that text exchange between FBI counterintelligence No. 2 Peter Strzok and former FBI lawyer Lisa Page, his lover?
In a Sept. 2, 2016, text to Strzok about preparing talking points for then-FBI Director James Comey to give to President Obama, Page said it was important to do so because “potus wants to know everything we’re doing.”
“POTUS,” of course, is the acronym for “president of the United States.”
In a February column, former federal counterintelligence prosecutor Andrew McCarthy explained that Page’s text wasn’t some “bombshell revelation,” at least to those familiar with how presidential administrations function.
Recall that the operation launched by the Obama administration involving the Trump campaign was a counterintelligence probe. McCarthy notes, “Counterintelligence is an information-gathering exercise undertaken for one purpose and one purpose alone: to inform the president, through his subordinate intelligence officials, of information about threats to, and opportunities to advance, American interests.”
Obama was being kept in the loop as a matter of normal operations. So to believe he was ever on the outside looking in, learning about these revelations “from news reports” as he was so fond of saying, is about as irrational as it gets.
“The president is never supposed to resist ‘interference’ in counterintelligence. To the contrary, informing the president is the reason the FBI has a counterintelligence mission,” McCarthy explained. “Indeed, the information derived from counterintelligence operations is often included in the president’s daily intelligence briefing.”
By the same token, he noted further, it’s absurd to suggest that Trump’s involvement in the Russian probe could ever amount to “obstruction” — they exist to inform the president.
What makes Fleischer’s comments on Thursday newsworthy is the fact that — finally — questions about what Obama knew and when did he know it are being answered.
J.D. Heyes is also editor-in-chief of The National Sentinel.