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Secret Trump Russia investigation confirmed by ex-FBI agents as based on ‘serious and substantial evidence’

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Former FBI agents and Justice Department officials have rushed to the FBI’s defense over a report that President Donald Trump was being investigated for working for the Kremlin after he fired ex-director James Comey, saying it would not have been opened if officials were not seriously alarmed.

According to a report at the Daily Beast, agents and DOJ insiders who spoke with them said the White House’s protestations that the investigation was “absurd” are far from the truth, with one admitting it was based on “serious and substantial evidence.”

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Stating that decision was made way up the FBI’s hierarchy, one ex-agent said it was “unprecedented,” which indicated it was not entered into lightly.

“This is uncharted territory,” explained Ali Soufan, a former FBI counterterrorism agent. “I don’t believe that it had happened before… Ever.”

Explaining why the agency took the extraordinary step of opening the investigation, a Justice Department attorney explained the process.

“There are a variety of ways to gather information about foreign efforts to influence a U.S. official that don’t require the sensitive step of targeting that official’s communications, and those who are criticizing the FBI for pursuing a counterintelligence investigation are doing so without any knowledge of what investigative steps were actually undertaken,” the attorney said.

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Another former agent agreed that the decision to investigate a sitting president had to have the approval from senior Justice Department officials.

“It would be most likely that the highest levels of the FBI and DOJ signed off on the investigation,” former agent Mike German confirmed before adding, “Of course, with the U.S. president as a subject, the threshold would be much higher than normal.”

Another source in the Justice Department speculated that the investigation may still be ongoing.

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“They take a long time. They’re not over quickly. And based on the president’s public statements and actions, I think you have to open a cointel investigation,” explained the former senior DOJ official who oversaw counterintelligence investigations. “You might never know that it’s resolved. These cases often never see the inside of a courtroom. The findings are often kept within the intelligence community, indexed and filed away.”

You can read more here.

 

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Pennsylvania Republican senator arrested and charged with possession of child pornography

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According to a release from Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, Republican state Sen. Michael Folmer has been arrested and charged with possession of child pornography.

The release said that the investigation began as the result of a CyberTip about Tumblr discovering that a user had uploaded child pornography onto their site. It ultimately led to the home of Folmer in Lebanon, PA. A search warrant yielded images on Folmer's phone.

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Netanyahu refuses to concede after he falls short — blames media instead

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Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, refused to concede after being down in the election night polls. Like the last election, Netanyahu is claiming his own personal victory and blaming the media for all of his woes.

Senior Diplomatic correspondent Barak Ravid, at Channel 13 News in Tel-Aviv, was live-tweeting the election results late Tuesday night.

https://twitter.com/barakravid/status/1174116674225758209?s=21

"Netanyahu says Israel needs a Zionist government that is committed for Israel as a Jewish state. No government can be based on support from Arab parties," Ravid said.

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Mitch McConnell crony running for Kentucky AG is ineligible for office: lawsuit

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On Tuesday, the Lexington Herald-Leader reported that a new lawsuit seeks to remove Daniel Cameron from the ballot as the Kentucky GOP's nominee for state attorney general.

According to the lawsuit, filed by retired union worker and "concerned citizen" Joseph Leon Jackson Sr. in Jefferson Circuit Court, Cameron does not meet the office requirement of having practiced law for eight years — because although he was admitted by the Kentucky Bar Association in 2011, he spent two of the following years clerking for U.S. District Judge Gregory Van Tatenhove.

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