Trump: Investigate the FBI, not the Russians

AJ Vicens passes along the testimony of Admiral Mike Rogers, head of the NSA, on whether anyone has asked him to fight back against Russian election meddling:

In a response to questioning by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Rogers said “I believe that President Putin has clearly come to the conclusion that there’s little price to pay here…and that therefore I can continue this activity.”…Sen. Jack Reed (D-R.I.) asked Rogers whether he had received orders to go after the Russian meddling operation where it originated: “Have you been directed to do so given the strategic threat that faces the United States and the significant consequences you recognize already?”

“No I have not,” Rogers responded.

Here is Rogers’ boss today:

Is Trump concerned about the Russian hacks? No he is not. He’s concerned that the FBI is trying too hard to investigate the Russian hacks. He’s concerned that the FBI is interested in a guy who was explicitly recruited by the Russians a few years ago. He’s concerned with “potentially massive FISA abuse” by the FBI when they requested a wiretap on this guy.

There was, of course, no FISA abuse. It’s an entirely invented conspiracy theory. But Trump still wants that fake scandal investigated, and not just by some powerless inspector general. He wants it investigated using DOJ lawyers with the power to prosecute. And he’s once again pissed off at his own attorney general for not being enough of a lackey.

So it’s not surprising that Rogers has gotten no orders to do anything about the Russians. After all, who knows just what skullduggery that might accidentally uncover? It’s the last thing in the world that Trump wants.

UPDATE: Apparently Sessions is fed up. This time he’s fighting back:

I’ve mentioned this before, but regardless of what you think about his politics, Sessions views himself as a person of honor and integrity. He’s not the bootlicker that so many of Trump’s other appointments are.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.