March 13, 2017

What Standard of ‘Evidence’?

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: — Bill @ 12:39 pm

In-Obama-We-Trust-Patch-DownsizeArizona U.S. Senator John McCain is demanding that President Trump either produce evidence or retract the allegation his telecommunications system at the Trump Tower was ‘wiretapped’ by someone at the direction of former President Obama.

There are at least two Congressional committees which will apparently be including Trump’s allegations of wiretaps in broader investigations.

OpenCdA wonders:   By what standard would the sufficiency and validity of any Trump-produced evidence be judged?  What would be acceptable evidence in the eyes of John McCain, Charles Schumer,  and the other Capitol Hill Clowns?

Our opinion is that the standard for evaluating Trump’s comments before and during the investigations needs to be based on the broader requirement for probable cause rather than the narrower federal rules of evidence.

Probable cause amounts to more than a mere suspicion but less than evidence that would justify a conviction.  Would a reasonable man considering the information available conclude that some of Trump’s or his associates’ wire and oral communications may have been lawfully or unlawfully intercepted?

OpenCdA very strongly suspects that in the eyes and small minds of establishment rabidista partisans among the Clowns, no evidence submitted by President Trump will be sufficient to do anything other than give them an opportunity for more face time on the network news and talk shows.

We have a few completely opinionated and totally meaningless observations.

The swamp monsters in Fantasyland-on-the-Potomac seem intent on convincing us Deplorables that there were no court-ordered or authorized technical surveillances targeting anyone at the Trump Tower.    But if Trump or people close to him were engaging in actions justifying their being the authorized target of foreign counterintelligence investigations by members of the US Intelligence Community, might not telecommunications interception orders from the FISA court be a logical and possibly appropriate investigative tool?  Of course they would.

Before the November 2016 election, Nominee Trump was expressing concern about Russians influencing the election’s outcome.  It was Nominee Clinton who publicly ridiculed Trump for that assertion.  But after she lost, Clinton changed her tune and cried that Trump or his close associates had unauthorized communications with Russia and had conspired with the Russians to influence the outcome of the election.

We also have to look at another possibility:  What if Trump or people close to him (e.g., General Michael Flynn) were intercepted lawfully incidental to one or more FISA orders which did not specifically identify Candidate Trump or his associates as targets?  Then not Trump nor those associates nor the public should ever have learned of the intercepts.  Neither should the intercepted parties’ identities ever have been revealed to anyone not authorized to know them.  Likewise, the verbatim content of the non-target US citizen’s intercepted conversations should not even have been transcribed, let alone released in its entirety.

So we think the next logical questions that should be asked are, “If as reported in the skews media a FISA court at first denied authorization to intercept communications when Trump was named in the affidavit or application, why is it so inconceivable that there may have been illegal technical surveillances directed at Candidate Trump by either Obama or Clinton loyalists still inside the government including inside the Intelligence Community?  After all, Clinton was supposed to win the November 2016 election!  Why is it so inconceivable that there may have been illegal disclosures of intercepted wire and oral communications by either Obama or Clinton loyalists making an effort to undermine the Trump presidency?”

We still recall that the Watergate break-in in June 1972 was an illegal ‘third-rate burglary’ by the Nixon White House ‘plumbers’ to install illegal technical surveillance devices in the Watergate hotel and office complex headquarters of the Democratic National Committee.   That break-in was reportedly motivated by Nixon Attorney General John Mitchell’s willingness to use illegal technical surveillance methods ostensibly to stop the unauthorized disclosure of national security information.   Did Mitchell direct the ‘White House plumbers’ to conduct illegal surveillances because he knew there was insufficient evidence to support getting an order for a nonconsensual, nonwire interception inside the Democratic National Committee Headquarters from a federal district court ?  (FISA courts were not created until 1978.)

It is our opinion that the unlawful release of all or part of the transcript(s) of the Flynn-Kislyak intercepted communications  gave President Trump probable cause to be concerned that someone with authorized access to the transcript(s) may also have had the wherewithal to direct the interception of Trump Tower telecommunications before the election.

President Trump was right to request the Congressional investigations examine his allegation that  telecommunications from his Trump Tower may have been unlawfully compromised.

President Trump would also be right to reject Senator John McCain’s demand that Trump either provide evidence or recant his assertion.   Nevertheless, if President Trump is requested to provide information to Congressional investigators, we hope he will do it.

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