On Monday, former Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI), a former FBI special agent and chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, analyzed the implications of President Donald Trump having forced the CIA to remove a deeply embedded U.S. spy from Russia.
“The goal of the intelligence services at any time with our adversaries is how close can you get to plans and intentions by the government,” said Rogers. “And those are always the hardest sources to come by. They tend to be closest to the decision makers that are kind of remunerating about their options or North Korean options or Russian options, and always the hardest sources to get and candidly most of those sources don’t just show up at your door and you get one, you tend to grow into these kind of jobs, and are developed over a period, a long period of time, to be able to be recruited and asked to do something, to create an act of treason against their country, and certainly an act of patriotism toward the United States by giving us information that keeps us all safe.”
“In terms, the folks would understand … how difficult would it be for the U.S. to develop a source like that, given exactly the restrictions and difficulties you describe?” asked anchor Jim Sciutto.
“Very, very difficult,” said Rogers. “And the reason it’s called a denied area is because the countersurveillance activities in a place like Moscow are unbelievable. And I’ve been there many times, to look at those kinds of operations. And I will tell you, that it is always the concern of the intelligence services, first and foremost, for the security of their asset, the person that’s providing this information.”
“You’re aware of the broad concerns in the intel community about the president’s handling of classified intelligence,” said Sciutto, noting Trump’s meetings with the Russian ambassador in the Oval Office and with Vladimir Putin in Hamburg. “How serious are those concerns? How should people at home digest that?”
“I think the one comment was given to me is it was just, it is a lack of discipline problem, on the information provided,” said Rogers. “And you have to remember, it doesn’t have to even be a direct thing that comes from a very sensitive source, it’s context, and if you talk about that context in a place that you shouldn’t, again, there are counterintelligence agents who are looking at hanging on every word that the president might say, and so, you know, my argument is better discipline on all of this information is critically important, going forward. One slight slip, and you lose access, very key access to what the Russians intentions and plans and thinking is.”
Rick Santorum: ‘I have no problem’ with John Bolton testifying after ‘this impeachment thing’ is over
Conservative CNN contributor Rick Santorum asserted on Tuesday that former National Security Adviser John Bolton should wait until after President Donald Trump's impeachment trial ends to reveal what he knows about the president's scheme in Ukraine.
"The only thing I would question is sort of the timing of submitting the book for review," Santorum said during an appearance on CNN. "I mean, you're doing it at a time -- knowing the history of what goes on in this White House, that leaks are prevalent -- to submit this manuscript at this time, I think was bad judgement."
"I have no problem with John Bolton writing a book," he continued. "This is someone who deeply believes in his worldview and what is best for America and I think he felt compelled to write something about the state of foreign policy in America and where our country is going."
‘The president’s lying — that should matter!’ CNN’s Berman unloads on GOP for blowing off Bolton revelations
CNN's John Berman on Tuesday expressed frustration at the idea that Republican senators could still vote to acquit President Donald Trump even after leaked excerpts of former national security adviser John Bolton's book further implicated the president.
During a panel discussion about Bolton's book, which reportedly alleges that Trump directly linked releasing military aid to Ukraine with investigations into former Vice President Joe Biden, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman warned that the book may not be the big game changer that many have been hoping to see.
"I'm somewhat more skeptical that this is going to necessarily lead to witnesses," she said. "It might. I just think that we really don't know, and I think the desire for Republicans to have this wrapped up fairly quickly remains strong."
GOP’s Joni Ernst may have inadvertently boosted Joe Biden in Iowa: ex-White House official
On CNN's "New Day," regular contributor and former White House Press Secretary Joe Lockhart almost rolled his eyes at a clip of Iowa Republican Sen. Joni Ernst rushing to the cameras to gush about attacks on Joe Biden, saying she may have ended up helping the former vice president in her own state.
Speaking with hosts John Berman and Alisyn Camerota after watching the clip of the Iowa Republican blurting, "The Iowa caucuses are this next Monday evening, and I'm really interested to see how this discussion today informs and influences the Iowa caucus voters, those Democratic goers. Will they be supporting VP Biden at this point?" Lockhart seemed in disbelief that she may have handed Biden a boost.