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 Politics Archive 2017

The FBI listened in on Paul Manafort's conversations before and after the election
by Nathan'ette Burdine: September 19, 2017

CNN says the FBI was listening in on Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort’s conversations before and after the election.

Manafort drew the FBI’s attention after his questionable dealings with a Ukrainian consulting firm back in 2014.

According to CNN, the FBI ended the investigation into Manafort due to a lack of evidence. But then Donald Trump came along and asked Paul Manafort to help steer the presidential campaign in the right direction after Corey Lewandowski proved that all he could do was steer it in the wrong direction.

Manafort came in and got Trump the votes he needed in order to stop the Republican revolt against him, sealing the deal for Trump to go on and become the 45th president of the United States.

But uh-oh, a problem arose. And that problem was Russia, Russia, Russia.

As we all know by now, Donald Trump Jr. (Junior), Jared Kushner, and Paul Manafort all met Russian Lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya in order to get the low down on Hillary Clinton.

Initially, all denied the claims but then had to fess up to at least attending the meeting after Junior snitched via Twitter that he did indeed have a meeting with Veselnitskaya about Clinton.

CNN did report that the FBI did not wiretap the meeting the three had with Veselnitskaya.

The FBI did, however, get a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant from the FISA court in order to wiretap Manafort’s residence at Trump tower.

It must be noted that before an FBI agent can ask a FISA court judge to approve the warrants, the agent must first get the warrants approved by the top guys and or gals in the FBI and the Department of Justice (DOJ).

Are you thinking that there’s a great chance that former FBI director James Comey and former Attorney General Loretta Lynch approved the warrants? Welp, if you are, you won’t be far off.

After getting the approval of the top folks in the FBI and the DOJ, FBI agents must then prove to the FISA court that there is reason to believe that the subject of the warrants is plotting something nefarious.

They were able to do this with Manafort. After getting the go ahead from the FISA court, the FBI agents went ahead and tapped Manafort’s phone at his residence in Trump Tower.

Now, is it possible that some of Trump conversations with Manafort were picked up? It is.

However, it is not evidence that Trump was right in that he was a direct subject of a FISA court order allowing the FBI to tap his phones.

The bad news for Trump is that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has opened a criminal investigation into Paul Manafort possibly colluding with the Russians during the 2016 presidential campaign in order to help Trump get elected.

Not only was the FBI listening in on Manafort’s conversation, but back in July of this year the FBI also served a warrant at his residence in Virginia.

Then there’s that whole Facebook bit and that warrant scaring the shit out of them so that they’ve decided to give Mueller all their documents on the Russians buying fake ads to target Trump supporters.

So yeah, what is bad for Manafort is worse for Trump.

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