Sally Yates testified by video-link. She was interrogated vigorously by Lindsay Graham with the odious Dianne Feinstein parroting all the rubbish we have heard before about Russian interference.
The entire, three hour plus meeting was streamed by Fox Business and can be found at this link.
Graham began by giving Yates the opportunity to come clean by suggesting she had been kept in the dark by President Obama, but she showed where her loyalties lie.
We were greeted with the bold claim that Vladimir Putin had personally authorised the subversion of the American electoral process, although we weren’t told how Yates, Feinstein or anyone else knew about this.
Feinstein did her best to make General Flynn the villain of the piece.
Chuck Grassley backed off somewhat on the Steele dossier, and Yates followed his lead faithfully, though she too conceded the dossier might have been viewed with a healthy dose of skepticism.
Yates denied discussing the dossier with Obama. She agreed with a later suggestion that Flynn was susceptible to blackmail – absurd, and we heard a lot more about Russia interference, however, when asked by Senator Graham what action the Obama Administration had taken against this interference, her answer was basically nothing. Two conclusions can be drawn from this: one is that Yates and company did not take such interference seriously; the other is that they welcomed this interference because it helped them. Indeed, Donald Trump himself has stated repeatedly that the Russians would have preferred a Clinton presidency to his own.
It also became clear there was no love lost between Yates and Comey. She said she did not know the DNC had funded the Steele dossier but “we” suspected it.
Senator Hawley was far more combative, asking was no one in the chain of command responsible for the continual renewal of the FISA applications. After quoting from the damning judgment of the FISA court, he pressed her on the actions of Bruce Ohr. She pleaded ignorance. Well, she would do that, wouldn’t she?
Next up was Amy Klobuchar who continued to perpetuate the lie of “unprecedented” Russian interference. In response to her open, Yates had the gall to claim George Papadopoulos tipped off the authorities that the Russians had attempted to recruit him.
The actual extent of “Russian” interference in the 2016 election was summarised two years ago by a bemused Lee Camp.
Senator Graham would not let this go, and tore into Yates asking her of Papadopoulos: “Was he a Russian agent?” to which she replied he was “connected” with Russian intelligence, which prompted Graham to laugh. (Later, she backtracked on that claim).
Senator Kennedy told her the Steele dossier was junk, and invited her to agree? She would not!
Two hours and thirty-eight minutes into the video, Ted Cruz asked her at what point did she become aware that the Obama Administration was surveilling the Trump campaign. She denied this allegation point blank! Like much of her testimony, these were semantic games. Recall William Barr alluded to spying as spying; others used stupid euphemisms.
After Ted Cruz came the moronic Senator Hirono, who clearly did not ask any intelligent questions.
Cory Booker was the last questioner, who used his time to make an attack on William Barr.
Senator Graham ended the hearing making the point that come Hell or high water, they would get to the bottom of this matter.
Expect indictments shortly before the election!
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.