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GOP’s own memo admits George Papadopoulos ‘triggered the opening of an FBI investigation’ — not the Steele dossier

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Former Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos (Twitter photo).

The long-awaited memo, written by staffers for House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-CA), portends to show abuses by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Justice under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). What it fails to show, and in fact directly contradicts, is the notion that the FBI based the Russia investigation off a dossier compiled by former MI6 agent Christopher Steele.

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In the memo itself, House Republicans acknowledge information related to onetime Donald Trump campaign advisor George Papadapolous “triggered the opening of an FBI counterintelligence investigation in late July 2016.” This admission comes after extensive efforts to link the Steele dossier to FISA applications that targeted former Trump adviser Carter Page.

The Nunes memo argues the Steele dossier “formed an essential part of the Carter Page FISA application,” and pointed to the FBI’s failure to cite the origin of the Steele dossier (which included funding by a Republican during the 2016 primaries) as one of the key points. It also accuses the FBI of using media reports sourced by Steele in order to obtain FISA renewals on Page.

The memo further links the Page FISA warrant to the dossier by noting that former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe “testified before the committee in December 2017 that no surveillance warrant would have been sought from the FISC without the Steele dossier information.”

In the very next point, the memo acknowledges that it was information on Papadapolous—not Page—that prompted the FBI’s investigation.

“The Page FISA application also mentions information regarding fellow Trump campaign adviser George Papadapolous, but there is no evidence of any cooperation or conspiracy between Page and Papadapoulous,” the memo reads. “The Papadapolous information triggered the opening of an FBI counterintelligence investigation in late July 2016 by FBI agent Peter Strzok.” The memo goes on to repeat GOP talking points accusing Strzok of “clear bias” against Trump.

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2020 Election

Lincoln Project whacks the president: ‘We end COVID when we end Trump’s presidency’

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President Donald Trump on Thursday held a campaign rally in Wisconsin with supporters "packed in like sardines."

At the rally, Trump ridiculed former Vice President Joe Biden for social distancing at campaign appearances with America's death toll over 200,000. Also on Thursday, Biden held a town hall meeting on CNN where he spoke in-depth about the challenges of a coronavirus vaccine.

The Lincoln Project, the group of former top GOP strategists working to defeat Trump, said that "only one candidate will protect your family from coronavirus" in a new video.

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Trump said he would give UN speech despite pandemic — but reversed course and won’t be attending

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US President Donald Trump will not attend next week's UN General Assembly gathering in person, his chief of staff told journalists aboard Air Force One Thursday, according to a pool report.

The decision marks an about-face for Trump, who last month said he wanted to deliver his speech in the General Assembly hall in New York, even if other world leaders are staying away due to the coronavirus pandemic.

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows ended the debate once and for all, telling reporters en route to Wisconsin, where Trump was to hold a campaign rally, that the president would not physically attend the General Assembly's 75th session, which will take place mainly by videoconference due to the health crisis.

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2020 Election

Trump mocked for 95-minute ‘slurring’ campaign speech — before crowd ‘packed in like sardines’ in Wisconsin

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President Donald Trump gave a fear-filled and factually inaccurate campaign rally in Mosinee, Wisconsin on Thursday.

The rally, held in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic, featured a large crowd closely packed together.

Here's some of what people were saying about Trump's speech, which lasted approximately 95 minutes:

https://twitter.com/RSBNetwork/status/1306433275381116928

https://twitter.com/bad_takes/status/1306758848577966081

Trump is slurring and sounds tired pic.twitter.com/6MJLw2fpms

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