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‘This will be a car wreck’: Ex-CIA officer says Barr will try to use Steele’s testimony to discredit Russia investigation

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On Tuesday’s edition of CNN’s “The Situation Room,” former CIA officer Phil Mudd told Wolf Blitzer that ex-MI6 agent Christopher Steele’s decision to brief the Justice Department about his infamous dossier on President Donald Trump’s connections to Russia is going to end badly for him, and possibly for the rule of law.

“This will be a car wreck,” said Mudd. “Look, this isn’t about the Mueller investigation per se. It’s about the origins of the investigation and how the Department of Justice — and Attorney General Barr has talked about this repeatedly, his suspicions about how the Department of Justice originated the investigation. Obviously one of the documents was Christopher Steele, former intelligence operative, the information he uncovered about Donald Trump from Russian operatives.”

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Steele’s dossier alleged a number of things that turned out to be true, like that Russia laundered intelligence they gathered on the Democratic Party through WikiLeaks and that former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort was involved in personally lucrative negotiations with Ukrainian oligarchs. Other parts of it are salacious and unverified, like the claim that Russian prostitutes performed urine-related sex acts for Trump and the Russian government was blackmailing him with video footage of the incident.

The dossier was not the sole source of information that prompted the FBI to open an investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia. However, the president’s allies have long tried to use the dossier’s spottier claims as evidence that the FBI’s investigation, and the subsequent appointment of special counsel Robert Mueller, was illegitimate.

“Let me give you how this game ends,” said Mudd. “Christopher Steele shows up in front of the Department of Justice, and I’m guessing doesn’t have terrific answers for the quality of the information in that Steele dossier. I’m telling you, Wolf, this is not going to go well. I can’t believe he has perfect answers about the origins of the Steele dossier. I’m not even sure why he’s showing up. If I were him, I’d go to Disney World. I would not go to the Department of Justice, because it will not end up well.”

“The question here is not just what Steele found,” warned Mudd. “If it’s determined that Steele had a bit of questionable information, that’s fine. If it’s found that that questionable information played into, for example, the FISA warrant to look at Carter Page’s e-mails, that is a hot mess, and I think that’s where we’re headed from here.”

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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‘Hypocritical’ Republicans busted for disappearing now that Trump has exploded the deficit

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In a "Reality Check" segment on CNN on Thursday morning, contributor John Avlon called out GOP fiscal hawks who have suddenly disappeared from the public square now that a Republican president has exploded the national debt.

Introduced by host John Berman, who asked, "This morning new numbers from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) confirm it: The national debt and deficit are much worse than thought. So where is the party of fiscal responsibility in times like these?" Avlon broke it down.

"While President Trump was busy proclaiming himself 'the chosen one,' you might have missed more bad news in the form of data," Avlon smirked. "Brand new CBO numbers shows the budget deficit is skyrocketing, projected to rise 25 percent over last year and heading to over $1 trillion next year. Tax revenues are $430 billion below where they were expected to be before the Trump tax cuts while spending in is in drunken sailor territory adding $1.7 trillion in the next decade."

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‘Something wrong’ with Trump’s mental health — and he needs an ‘intervention’: Dem lawmaker

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Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL) told CNN's John Berman that President Donald Trump's mental health should be a cause of deep concern for all Americans.

In particular, Deutch pointed to Trump's string of strange statements on Wednesday, in which he favorably quoted someone who called him "The Second Coming of God" and then flat-out referred to himself as "The Chosen One."

"If you or I had an uncle who went on social media and started making claims or tweeting claims about being the 'King of Israel' and the 'Second Coming; and then went out into public and talked about being the 'Chosen One,' you know what we would do?" he asked rhetorically. "We would gather our family members and figure out how to have an intervention because there's something clearly wrong there."

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Tea Party ex-lawmaker admits he was wrong about Obama — calls him a much better president than Trump

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Sidestepping questions over whether he will primary Donald Trump, former Tea Party Republican lawmaker Joe Walsh launched a brutal attack on the president comparing him unfavorably to one of his previous foes: President Barack Obama.

Speaking with CNN hosts John Berman and Alisyn Camerota, the former Illinois congressman refused to commit to running but sketched out what any GOP candidates running against the embattled president must do to have a chance to rally disaffected Republican voters.

"I think we overanalyze Trump, "Walsh began. "He's not complicated, he's a horrible human being. He's a bad, bad guy."

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