Yesterday, Republican Devin Nunes held an explosive press conference outside the White House in which he told reporters that communications from the Trump team were picked up and disseminated within the government during the 2016 campaign.
Not surprisingly, the comments ruffled some liberal feathers and the mainstream media launched an immediate smear campaign calling for Nunes to resign his post immediately.
Now, according to Fox News sources, congressional investigators expect that a potential “smoking gun” from the NSA establishing that the Obama administration spied on the Trump transition team, and possibly the president-elect himself, will be produced to the House Intelligence Committee as early as tomorrow.
The intelligence is said to leave no doubt the Obama administration, in its closing days, was using the cover of legitimate surveillance on foreign targets to spy on President-elect Trump, according to sources.
The FBI hasn’t been responsive to the House Intelligence Committee’s request for documents, but the National Security Agency is expected to produce documents to the committee by Friday. The NSA document production is expected to produce more intelligence than Nunes has so far seen or described – including what one source described as a potential “smoking gun” establishing the spying.
Classified intelligence showing incidental collection of Trump team communications, purportedly seen by committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., and described by him in vague terms at a bombshell Wednesday afternoon news conference, came from multiple sources, Capitol Hill sources told Fox News. The intelligence corroborated information about surveillance of the Trump team that was known to Nunes, sources said, even before President Trump accused his predecessor of having wiretapped him in a series of now-infamous tweets posted on March 4.
The key to that conclusion is the unmasking of selected U.S. persons whose names appeared in the intelligence, the sources said, adding that the paper trail leaves no other plausible purpose for the unmasking other than to damage the incoming Trump administration.
Because Nunes’s intelligence came from multiple sources during a span of several weeks, and he has not shared the actual materials with his committee colleagues, he will be the only member of the panel in a position to know whether the NSA has turned over some or all of the intelligence he is citing.
If true, of course, this could put a ‘slight’ taint Obama’s claim of a “scandal free” eight years in the White House.
* * *
For those who missed it, here was Nunes’s press conference from yesterday:
The FBI is not cooperating with the House of Representatives’ investigation into the NSA’s surveillance of the Trump campaign during the 2016 election, the chairman of the U.S. House Permanent Select Committee, Devin Nunes said in a press conference on Wednesday afternoon.
In the aftermath of today’s most stunning news report, namely the confirmation that Trump may have been right all along following the admission of House Intel Committee Chair Devin Nunes that the communications of Trump’s aides and the president himself had been “incidentally” monitored, Nunes held an explosive press conference outside the White House in which told reporters that communications from the Trump team were picked up and disseminated within the government during the 2016 campaign. Nunes said sources within the intelligence community presented him with the information. He spoke to the press after briefing the administration.
Nunes said that he had briefed the president about his concerns over the “incidental” collection of data, adding that the president “needs to know” that these intel reports exist, and adding ominously that “some of what I’ve seen seems to be inappropriate.”
Nunes also said that Trump, others in the transition team were put into the intelligence report and asked if Trump should be in these “normal” reports.
But what was perhaps most troubling in Nunes presser is that in the aftermath of Monday’s Congressional hearing with James Comey in which the FBI director said on the record there had been no surveillance of Trump, is the House Intel Commission chair’s statement that the FBI is not cooperating with the investigation.
“We don’t actually know yet officially what happened to General Flynn,” Nunes said of how communications from Gen. Flynn’s calls were leaked to the press. “We just know that his name leaked out but we don’t know how it was picked up yet. That was one of the things that we asked for in the March 15th letter, was for the NSA, CIA, and FBI to get us all the unmasking that was done.”
“And I’ll tell you, NSA is being cooperative,” Nunes continued, “but so far the FBI has not told us whether or not they’re going to respond to our March 15th letter, which is now a couple of weeks old.”
Nunes also reported that as of now, he “cannot rule out” President Obama ordering the surveillance.
Finally, and contrary to earlier media reports, Nunes clarified that the surveillance was not related to the FBI’s investigation into possible collusion with Russia. This surveillance, he emphasized to reporters, does not “have anything to do with Russia.” As a reminder, this has been the strawman argument proposed by much of the liberal media, which has said that a wiretapping of Trump or his aides, would only confirm that his relations with Russia were suspect and thus prompted a FISA warrant.
If Nunes is correct, and Trump was being wiretapped for reasons having nothing to do with Russia, that entire narrative falls apart, and the press will now have to spend the next few weeks building up an entirely new narrative to “justify” why Trump was being wiretapped on Obama’s watch.