Ohio Congressman Jim Jordan joined me this morning to discuss FBI Director Christopher Wray’s testimony yesterday before the House Judiciary Committee:
HH: I’m joined now by Congressman Jim Jordan from the great state of Ohio, a member of the House Judiciary Committee. Congressman Jordan, welcome to the Hugh Hewitt Show.
JJ: Good to be with you this morning, Hugh.
HH: Now Congressman, I’m fairly confident I am the only broadcast host in either radio or television who has ever held the SCI clearances necessary or actually prepared hundreds of applications to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.
HH: …for the Attorney General’s review and signature. And so I listened to every word yesterday with rapt attention. I had some sympathy, a lot of sympathy, actually, for Director Wray, because I didn’t think he could answer you based upon the classified nature of those applications. Were you aware of that?
JJ: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, but what, remember, Hugh, I was very clear in the hearing. I’m not asking for what the court has. I’m asking for what you assembled to take to the court. We want that information, because that will tell us, that will tell us if in fact they relied on this proven, National Enquirer garbage dossier, if they relied on that to get a warrant to spy on Americans. And so that’s what we were pushing for, and we’re the committee of jurisdiction over the Justice Department. We’re the Judiciary Committee. For goodness sake’s, he can give us that information.
HH: I believe he can, and I believe he can answer your questions in a classified hearing. I don’t believe he can answer those questions yesterday, because the very existence of the warrant, at least when I was doing this, the application for the warrant was classified, because the material connected with the application for the warrant was quite often injurious to the national security if it was released into the public. I mean, that’s why I thought he was, he wasn’t stonewalling you yesterday. I think he would have violated the law if he’d have answered you in open session.
JJ: Well, I didn’t expect an answer, but I do expect him to answer can you give us the stuff that you put together. And I’m convince Peter Strzok was part of this. After all, he was the deputy head of counterintelligence at the FBI. I’m convinced he’s part of this. Can you put, can you give us what you assembled to then take to the FISA Court, not what the FISA Court had. But there is information they put together to say we believe this dossier is legit. We’ve checked it out, and we think, we’re going to rely on this to get a warrant to spy on Carter Page or any other Americans connected with the Trump campaign. That’s what I was focused on. I believe he can do that.
HH: He can do that in a SCIF. They can bring that over for any member of your committee who has got the appropriate SCI clearances in a SCIF.
HH: They can show you the application. And if he had said no, I’m not going to show you the application, I would be outraged. But I don’t think he did. I think he was just trying to say not now, not here, but whenever you’d like to make an appointment in the sensitive…
HH: Okay. Let’s get to the theory of the case, because right now, we’re dealing with theory. What do you think happened here, because I am urging a second special counsel be appointed.
JJ: I agree.
HH: Leave Special Counsel Mueller alone.
HH: …but one to investigate what I think is a pattern of abuse of power by the Obama Justice Department.
HH: What do you think happened, your speculation, Jim Jordan?
JJ: Well, first of all, I agree with you 100%, and that’s why we called for that second special counsel back in July, and have been pushing for it ever since. And each day, we learn something new that only convinces us more that we need the second special counsel. So the theory of the case is this. They took this disproven dossier. The Clinton campaign, Democratic National Committee paid the law firm who paid Fusion GPS who paid Christopher Steele, the former MI6 agent, who paid Russians to assemble this report, this dossier, which is disproven and full of a bunch of baloney. They took that report, I believe, to the FISA Court to get the warrant to then spy on Carter Page. So what you have, in essence, is the Justice Department, the FBI, working with one campaign to go after the other campaign. And Peter Strzok, after we learned this past weekend was dismissed from the Mueller team, after knowing that Peter Strzok was the guy at the FBI who ran the Clinton investigation, who interviewed Huma Abedin, who interviewed Cheryl Mills, who interviewed Secretary Clinton, who was the guy who changed the letter from the statement gross negligence, which is criminal to extreme carelessness, which is not, that same guy, Peter Strzok, who ran the Russian investigation, interviewed Mike Flynn, was put on the Mueller team and then dismissed, we learned this past weekend, because of some text messages he exchanged with a colleague at the FBI that were anti-Trump. And I started thinking that can’t be all of it, because again, as I said in committee, if you got rid of everyone on the Mueller team who was anti-Trump, you wouldn’t have anybody left. Almost all the top lawyers there gave big money to Clinton and Obama. So there has to be something more, and when you look at what Peter Struck’s title was, deputy head of counterintelligence, I think it has to do with the dossier and what was taken to the FISA Court.
HH: Jim Jordan, based on everything you know as a member of the Judiciary Committee, and you hold clearances in that position, do you not?
JJ: Yeah, members of Congress do, yeah.
HH: Based on everything that you know, do you believe that Mr. Strzok, Mr. Ohr, who was until yesterday the deputy associate attorney general and others…
HH: …conspired to influence the election in 2016, and to adversely impact the campaign of President Trump?
JJ: Look, Hugh, I can’t say 100% that I know that, but everything tells me that’s where all the evidence is pointing, and that’s why I asked the questions I did yesterday. That’s why we want that application so we can see for ourselves if they did what everything points to that they did. That’s how I’ll say it, because you can’t say you’re 100% sure, but everything points that direction. And it sure makes a lot of sense. And again, as I said yesterday, if in fact that happened, where the FBI took opposition research from one campaign and dressed it all up and spruced it all up and made it appear like it was a legitimate intelligence document, and took it to the court to get a warrant to go after the other campaign, that is, that should never happen in this great country. And everything points to, everything piles up and points that that’s exactly what they did do.
HH: Are you alleging the abuse of power that you believe occurred but can’t be certain, because we need an investigation, but you believe it to have occurred, are you alleging that that abuse of power also involved the Central Intelligence Agency?
JJ: Well, at some point, you know that the intelligence community said you know, Russia tried to influence the election, and they had this assessment. Now I want to know was Peter Strzok part of that assessment? You know, I assume that was Mr. Clapper, Mr. Brennan and other folks in our intelligence community who ultimately made that determination. So you know, we’ll have to see if that took place. What I do know is on January 6, the intelligence community went up to New York to brief then-President-Elect Trump on the intelligence situation. And after that main briefing, James Comey stuck around to brief the President-Elect on the dossier. And I think that briefing was largely to give the dossier greater legitimacy, because quickly after that meeting, it was leaked to CNN and other news outlets, that, in fact, Mr. Comey, had briefed the President on the dossier, that the fact that that briefing had taken place. And CNN and BuzzFeed then printed the dossier for the whole world to see. So you know, the intelligence community briefs the President-Elect, and then quickly it leaks? So you’ve got to wonder about the intelligence community, some of the people who were in it during the Obama administration as well.
HH: Jim Jordan, again, this is a question of what you believe, not what has been proved. Do you believe that the abuse of power and conspiracy that you are alleging, and that’s what you are alleging, a conspiracy to wrongfully influence the election via the abuse of counterintelligence processes, that it extended to the White House, and if so, specifically to Ben Rhodes?
JJ: I don’t know, but you know what? When you look at who had the ability to unmask all these names, and this is where this story just keeps getting bigger. If you look at the people who had the ability to unmask these names, they happened to be some of the same names that we deposed during, I was on the Benghazi Committee. And they happened to be some of the same people, when you think about Susan Rice, Ben Rhodes. I remember sitting through the deposition with Ben Rhodes. So you have to wonder if that’s connected as well. What we need is some of these key documents. And here’s the thing that drives me crazy. This is not the Holder Justice Department. This is not the Lynch Justice Department. This is now the Sessions Justice Department. Give us the documents we rightfully have a right, rightfully have the ability to view and to examine, so we can get answers for the American people.
HH: So Jim Jordan, why do you suppose the President, who can order the FISA warrant dossier to be disclosed, but won’t do so, why do you suppose the President is not ordering Rod Rosenstein, this is not in conflict with Special Counsel Mueller, who I do not want disturbed, and who I believe you don’t want disturbed. But the president of the United States can order the disclosure of this FISA warrant to the committee today.
JJ: Of course.
HH: Why doesn’t he do that?
JJ: Yeah, of course he, well, I mean, come on, Hugh. You know the lay of the land here in Washington, D.C. If the President says anything remotely close to the Russian investigation that Special Counsel Mueller is conducting, that the Democrats will go crazy. They tried, they tried this crazy impeachment thing just two days ago. So they’ll go crazy. They’ll stick with this crazy idea they’ve got now that there’s somehow obstruction of justice. And so there’s all that concern, I think, out there. But you don’t need the President to do it. You need the Attorney…that’s why three days ago, Ron DeSantis and I, and a number of others, sent a letter, Matt Gaetz and some others, we sent a letter to Rosenstein, to Sessions, and to Christopher Wray. And we said release the application. Show us what’s there. Let us see it. So we don’t need the President to tell them to do it. They can do it, and that’s why I asked the questions I did yesterday in the hearing.
HH: Now two more questions, Representative Jordan. One is the Inspector General was offered up as a buffer. In my view, that is wholly inadequate, as the IG is a creature of statute, answerable to the Congress, and without prosecutorial authority.
JJ: You are so right.
HH: Does, do you believe the country understands the Inspector General is often a place where investigations go to die?
JJ: They don’t understand. You summarized it better than anyone could’ve as those who sat right there, Hugh. You’re exactly right. You can’t hide behind the fact the Inspector General is doing an investigation so we can’t give you documents, because there’s an ongoing investigation. Come on. That’s crazy. Now thank goodness the Inspector General is doing good work, and that’s part of the reason we know what we know about Peter Strzok and everything else. But you can’t hide behind that, and you’re exactly right. The Inspector General cannot put anyone, he can’t prosecute, he can’t put anyone in jail. So give us the information so that we can hold people, because it’s, again, I keep coming back to this, because if this took place, this is even worse than what the IRS did when they targeted people for their political beliefs. This is the FBI of the United States of America working with the Democratic Party to go after President Trump and the Republican Party, go after, when Donald Trump was the nominee and the other party’s campaign. That can never be allowed to happen in this great nation. So if that took place, this is bigger even than the IRS going after people, which was as wrong as it gets as well, but this is huge if this happened. So let’s get the information so we can figure it all out and then unravel this story.
HH: All right, two last questions. First of all, Director Comey, if what you suspect happened, he is either Mr. Magoo or Karla, the superspy of John Le Carre legend. Which do you think it is?
JJ: Well, I think the more we learn, you know, the fact that he went to New York as we talked about earlier, briefed the President and then that information is quickly leaked, that the briefing took place and the subject matter was the dossier, I think to give it legitimacy. The fact that he, after he is fired, takes a government document, leaks it through a friend to the New York Times for the stated purpose, he said this under oath, to create momentum for a special counsel. And of course, it couldn’t just be anybody. It had to be his best friend, his predecessor, his mentor, Bob Mueller. So you start looking at all the things Comey was involve in, and then you look at how this exoneration letter was being drafted prior to even interviewing Secretary Clinton, before the investigation was over, and how it was changed from gross negligence, a criminal term, a term of art, to extreme carelessness, you look at all that, and you start to think hey, he’s, this, he’s up to his eyeballs in this stuff, too. And it is not good, in my judgment, when you look at that whole history and all the facts there.
HH: So that’s Karla.
HH: Now, do you want Mr. Mueller to remain in his job untouched by the President?
JJ: I think each and every day, the more we learn, the more you question this whole, this whole Mueller special counsel. So again, I think we’ve got more things to confirm, but everything points to each and every day, that, so just go back to the premise. The premise is Mueller is investigating potential coordination between the Trump campaign and Russians to influence last year’s presidential election. But how about the fact we know that the Democrats and the Clinton campaign paid Russians to influence last year’s presidential election?
HH: I get that, but I…
JJ: We know that as a fact.
HH: I disagree completely. If Mueller is fired, we will have a firestorm that will forever fog up and cloud over with smoke what you are onto, so leave him alone to do his work.
HH: The Flynn indictment…
JJ: And I haven’t called for it. I haven’t called for him to be fired.
HH: Good, good.
JJ: I have called for Attorney General Sessions, if you’re not going to appoint a second special counsel, then maybe you should step down.
HH: Oh, okay.
JJ: So appoint a special counsel. Do the right thing.
HH: I want one, too. And hopefully…
JJ: But I have not called for Mueller, but I will tell you, I think so much of this is tainted, and he never should have been appointed in the first place. But now that we have him, I think the key is the second special counsel.
HH: Keep pushing for that, Jim Jordan. Thank you for joining me.
JJ: You bet, Hugh. Take care.
End of interview.