Still doing Trump’s dirty work.
Courtesy of The Atlantic:
According to two people familiar with his trip across the pond who requested anonymity to discuss the chairman’s travels, Devin Nunes, a California Republican, was investigating, among other things, Steele’s own service record and whether British authorities had known about his repeated contact with a U.S. Justice Department official named Bruce Ohr. To that end, Nunes requested meetings with the heads of three different British agencies—MI5, MI6, and the Government Communications Headquarters, or GCHQ. (Steele was an MI6 agent until a decade ago, and GCHQ, the United Kingdom’s equivalent of the National Security Agency, was the first foreign-intelligence agency to pick up contacts between Trump associates and Russian agents in 2015, according to The Guardian.)
A U.K. security official, speaking on background, said “it is normal for U.K. intelligence agencies to have meetings with the chairman and members of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.” But those meetings did not pan out—Nunes came away meeting only with the U.K.’s deputy national-security adviser, Madeleine Alessandri. The people familiar with his trip told me that officials at MI6, MI5, and GCHQ were wary of entertaining Nunes out of fear that he was “trying to stir up a controversy.” Spokespeople for Alessandri and Nunes did not return requests for comment, and neither did the press offices for MI5 and MI6. GCHQ declined to comment.
Nunes, who served on Trump’s transition team, has been conducting a parallel investigation into the FBI and the DOJ since March 2017, when he first began examining whether top officials improperly “unmasked” and then leaked the names of Trump associates who surfaced in intelligence reports during the transition period. The unmasking scandal lost steam as Nunes shifted his attention to alleged surveillance abuses by the DOJ—a probe that Democrats said they did not approve and had no control over, but to which a group of House Republicans were privy. Earlier this year, Nunes alleged in a memo that the FBI had used intelligence passed to them by Steele to bolster the bureau’s application for a surveillance warrant targeting an early Trump campaign adviser, Carter Page, while failing to disclose “the political origins” of Steele’s research to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. A copy of the FBI’s warrant application, however, directly contradicts that claim.
The Brits are smart to be wary of Nunes.
He has either misrepresented or falsified data a number of times in the past in his attempt to cover for Trump, and it is a dead certainty that anything he would have learned would have been shamelessly manipulated to smear Christopher Steele, and any members of the Justice Department who interacted with him.
This trip by Nunes is just one more indication that Trump is getting more and more desperate by the day.