FBI Conducts Pre-Dawn Raid Of Paul Manafort’s Home

136px-US-FBI-ShadedSeal_svg440px-Director_Robert_S._Mueller-_III-1In a move that should concern the Trump legal team, FBI agents raided the Alexandria home of President Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort a couple weeks ago despite Manafort’s reported cooperation with investigators.  Given the fact that Manafort was turning over requests documents, it is notable that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigators would want to carry out such a heavy handed and public display of power.  I have long maintained that the most important developments in this investigation will likely concern Manafort and Gen. Michael Flynn, who are the most vulnerable to criminal charges and prosecutorial pressure.  They are the weakest links in this chain for prosecutors interests in trying to coerce cooperation of key witnesses.  What is clear is that the relationship between Manafort and the Special Counsel has materially changed.  A pre-dawn, unannounced raid on your home is meant to concentrate your mind on where you want to be during a rapidly approaching storm.  A raid tends to concentrate the mind of a witness on the future.

 

The raid occurred on July 26th before dawn.  Notably, Manafort had just turned over documents to the Senate Intelligence Committee the day before.  The timing makes the raid particularly intriguing.  It is possible that the investigators determined that Manafort was being more forthcoming with the congressional investigators or had turned over material not previously given to the Special Counsel.  In any case, this was a strong message to Manafort and Flynn that they cannot count on protection from either the White House or Congress.The search warrant was broad and agents were seen leaving with material.  While I have discussed the relatively rarity of prosecution under the Act, Manafort would seem more vulnerable to a charge under the Foreign Agent Registration Act (FARA).  Only a handful of such cases have been prosecuted since the revision of the Act and these violations are uniformly address administratively. However, that does not bar a prosecution.
Reports indicate that the FBI seized bank records, fueling suspicion that they may also be targeting Manafort for violations of the federal Bank Secrecy Act, which requires Americans to report their foreign banking accounts.
With a looming grand jury, Manafort’s greatest risk remains false statements to investigators.  The raid may have been meant to concentrate his mind on the risks that he is facing and the need to get to safer legal ground in the coming storm.

238 thoughts on “FBI Conducts Pre-Dawn Raid Of Paul Manafort’s Home

  1. There are a number of strange and unfounded assumptions in this piece.

    1.Given the fact that Manafort was turning over requests documents,
    He was turning over documents. Was he turning over all the documents? Perhaps there was a need and a reason for the raid? It is at least a point to consider, as someone did in this thread, to note how much care is required in making a case for a search warrant like this.
    The assumption in the text and more in the “supporter” comments is one that wants to indict anyone who conflicts with their opinion — as opposed to any facts — as being in the tank.
    That is the case Trump makes w his bellicose, and self-serving “it’s all a witch hunt”. Never considering that there may be witches to be found.

    2. it is notable that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigators would want to carry out such a heavy handed and public display of power
    It wasn’t public , as is demonstrated by the fact that it is 2wks later before it hits the news. Mueller is not pursuing a public trial.

    3. That the key “villains” are Manafort and Gen. Michael Flynn,
    The real conspiracy is below this level.. and involves Trumps long time financial dealings w the Russians over may years. Recently the news that Trump towers were citied as being a location for money laundering, along w any number of shady deals we know about – and who knows how many we do not —
    The real investigation into the motive for collision is to be found there.

    • michaelbeaton – you are assuming there are witches to be found to begin with. Personally, I do not believe witches exist. So a witch hunt is akin to a snipe hunt.

      • Actually no. But it is a metaphor, used on purpose by Trump due, I suppose, to the presumption of absurdity that is embedded in the event that gives rise to the metaphor. Its in your response as well…
        Everyone knows there are no witches
        This is a witch hunt
        Therefore the investigation is a snipe hunt..

        The logical flaw is in the premise.

        Lets abandon that for a moment, and propose that there is a professional investigation, things are being discovered. As is often said, no one knows the outcome of the investigation.
        Lets forget about witches and see if we can come up w any facts….and in particular ones that matter.

        • michaelbeaten – I would posit that to this point the investigation has not been professional. Unless you define professional as someone who gets paid to do it, not a standard or quality of product.

          • On what grounds or evidence? That is, what is the basis of your assertion? Or, to turn it around, what has been done that is unprofessional?

            • Start with allocating 30% of the positions on your legal team to 4-digit donors to the Democratic Party.

              • This is a Non-sequitur that, if applied with anything like consistency, as if this were some principle of investigations, would invalidate many investigations. Including and especially ones presumably, you would support.

                Further, the underlying accusation intoned in your statement here – which is, in essence, a restatement of Trumps talking points – is one of party affiliation motivating the investigators.
                While this is absurd on the face of it if you were to drill down into the layers of implications of all who would have to be party to your conspiracy… It has the more pernicious effect of thinking a group of life long public servants would be so trivialized as to perjure themselves as exampled by . 4 digit donations.

                It would be interesting to work this out with you. I wonder if you are so principled that you would be able to see how 6 and 7 digit “donations” are in play in this sordid business. Whether there is something actually prosecutable it to be determined…that’s why they call it an investigation. But the facts already known, long before this investigation commenced are already enough to warrant an investigation into Trump’s real estate and other dealings with the Russians.

                I wonder, this is your “starting” point. 30% are donors to the Dems. (As if this were essentially a partisan effort. It is not. )
                But why only 30%? What are the other 70% doing?
                But more important
                What else do you have? What is next in your list of discounting “facts” that would indeed support your point. This is insufficient a counter to my question.

                • “It has the more pernicious effect of thinking a group of life long public servants would be so trivialized as to perjure themselves as exampled by . 4 digit donations.”

                  Michael, I often ask myself why politicians and those aspiring for political appointments prostitute themselves for so little money. The answer, at least in part, is that they wish to endear themselves to the beneficiaries of such trivial amounts. It seems to work both ways as both parties seem to frequently prostitute themselves.

                  Then one has to think, if they are willing to prostitute themselves for such trivial amounts what stops them from using their power against others? The Constitution and the Bill of Rights does, but it seems all too many on the left today are willing to forget about the Bill of Rights or their own intellectual honesty, preferring to pursue political opponents and destroy them through unconstitutional means.

                  • Don’t you think your wonderments are a bit predefined? It comes across that way to me. You seem willing to void the massive support, and general acclaim Mueller received upon appointment from all sides, including then, and then again recently, Mr. Trump.
                    That and besides he is, if I recall correctly, a registered Republican.

                    All to say, your insinuation that Mueller is to be bought off for a <10k contributions as if that meant something pernicious, and not something else more obvious is why it seems to me you have a conclusion that you're trying very hard to fit , rather stuff, facts , rather suppositions, into.

                    I mean no meanness, but wonder if this makes any sense.

                    • Michael, No, your comments don’t make sense. Spare me the accolades for Mueller. I know very little about him, nor do I need to know much more. What counts is that he accepted a position he should ethically not have accepted if he truly were the man so many said he was. I didn’t say he was bought off (show me where I singled him out), because I don’t know or care. He should not be leading this investigation. Even if he were my mother, brother, best friend I would be against him because there are too many significant ethical conflicts.

                    • I know very little about him, nor do I need to know much more. What counts is that he accepted a position he should ethically not have accepted

                      > Why? What ethical violations are you referencing? The only one I have heard is the one you made “he contributed to Democrats”. A very thin point upon which to impune a complete resume of integrity spanning Republican and Democratic administrations.

                      if he truly were the man so many said he was. I didn’t say he was bought off (show me where I singled him out), because I don’t know or care.

                      > but you did essentially say this.

                      He should not be leading this investigation.

                      > Why? What has he actually done or said that invalidates him in this position?
                      Who would pass your muster as one who could and should be leading this investigation.

                      Even if he were my mother, brother, best friend I would be against him because there are too many significant ethical conflicts.

                      > What are they?
                      I hear 2. These donations to Dem’s you cited, and a past relationship w Comey.
                      You have others? You must, as these are too weak to support your allegation of “many significant conflicts”.

                    • “> Why? What ethical violations are you referencing? The only one I have heard is the one you made “he contributed to Democrats”

                      Michael, Where did I say he contributed to Democrats? Apparently you don’t take enough time and then you quote something you say I said when the statement doesn’t even exist…AND you put that statement into quotation marks. That is very poor form and tells us it doesn’t make a bit of difference what evidence one has because you will create your own evidence and attribute it to another [with quotation marks.]. Very dishonest.

                      You also have the audacity to ask “What ethical violations are you referencing?” I think the word ‘violations’ is once again yours. I used the term “ethical conflicts. My comment had nothing to do with Mueller violations rather it stated “ What counts is that he accepted a position he should ethically not have accepted”.

                      I find it insulting and disingenuous when one intentionally changes the context of what another said. I don’t know what side of the isle you are on, but you certainly speak like a leftist that doesn’t recognize fact or truth. You seem like one that cannot be trusted at all.

                      Instead of reading you come up with another question that was answered. “Why? What has he actually done or said that invalidates him in this position?”Just look at the quote above and you have your answer.

                      Finally ethical conflicts don’t mean the individual has committed an ethical ‘violation’ (your word) of each of those conflicts because they are just incidents that create an ethical conundrum for the person involved. He could have avoided this conundrum by not taking the job. He took the job despite these questions which reveals, IMO, he is ethically challenged.

                      As far as the conundrum he faced where he chose a less than ethical position where we needed someone spotless, those points have been mentioned over and over again on this blog. In fact I just detailed a whole set of quotes for Natacha from various news media plus a Fox article since Natacha seems to so appreciate Fox’s approach.

                      I am not going to indulge your laziness already evidenced in a quote you say I made that I never made. You can search the Internet much like everyone else and report here. Just be careful not to put “ “ around comments you made that you wish to attribute to an otherwise legitimate source.

                      The important part of my prior response was as follows, quite different than how you portray things.

                      “What counts is that he accepted a position he should ethically not have accepted if he truly were the man so many said he was. I didn’t say he was bought off (show me where I singled him out), because I don’t know or care. He should not be leading this investigation. Even if he were my mother, brother, best friend I would be against him because there are too many significant ethical conflicts.”

            • michaelbeaton – a pre-dawn raid is unprofessional under the circumstances, especially when they took his briefing binders for his Congressional hearing that same day.

              • You say that. You assert it as if it were true without a single point of fact or theory to back it up. You quite literally have no idea what you’re talking about.

                Of course, you can hold an opinion, as certainly you do. But you do not know…The complexities in this case would seem to me to warrant less certainty until facts are indeed released and actually known and presented.

                Of course, the last thing Trump wants are facts to come out. He has made that much clear. And I presume you are a Trump supporter, and thus likewise are hoping the facts do not come out. Maybe not, But if so, then you are a participant in a coverup that may have some serious consequences.
                And maybe not. Perhaps everyone will be exonerated from this complex mess… That also is possible and would seem to be a desirable outcome, if true, that Trump and supporters like you(?) would want to have published. What greater vindication for Trump and all if he were to be so exonerated! His twitter account would explode!

                yes? no?

                • michaelbeaton – agreed the pre-dawn raid was unprofessional is my opinion. However, it is the opinion of many.

                  I am not a Trump supporter, even though I did vote for him. There was no way in hell I was going to vote for Hillary or John McCain. I keep an open mind on Trump. He does some stuff I like and he does some stuff that drives me crazy. Everything Obama did drove me crazy. So, Trump is a step up as President as far as I am concerned.

                  • I wonder if you see the progression in your statements?

                    What you have here is a reasonable statement IMHO… That is you identify (finally) an opinion, even though you attempt to bolster it w an appeal to “the opinion of many”.
                    Prior you have been making assertions as if fact.

                    Why do I care? IN the small frame it doesn’t matter a fig.
                    IN the larger frame of this increasingly toxic conversation space and profoundly polarized political public square , we are increasingly unable to have any sort of rational dialog due to the slinging of Opinions as if Fact at one another.

                    This little example of Mueller’s team, and the one example in this thread of the raid is case in point.
                    We don’t know, but everyone seems to hold their opinion as if they do, thus become impervious to facts as they actually emerge.

                    This has been a well noted syndrome in this nascent Trump era. I don’t care a bit about how bad Hillary was, , I am fine that you made your choice as you worked it out in your mind…
                    What I do care about is that we are being told now that facts don’t matter anymore, it is tribal affiliation and emotions that dictate one’s position on these and even greater matters.
                    This is not a debatable idea, as it seems quite apparent from daily examples that this is true. (but willing to debate it , of course!)

                    I find that not only alarming but concerning… because when we abandon the honest pursuit of the truth in order to maintain the Tribe we have slipped far down the slippery slope towards…what? … whatever it is it is not advanced, enlightenment, rule of law democracy….

                    IMO.

                    Appreciate the exchange.

  2. There are a couple of questiobable assumptions in this piece.

    1. Given the fact that Manafort was turning over requests documents,

    2. it is notable that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigators would want to carry out such a heavy handed and public display of power.

    Re

  3. I wonder if Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein, to whom Mueller reports, would be willing to outline for the public the crimes for which the Manafort search warrant authorized agents to seize evidence. This would go some of the way toward filling in the gap Rosenstein left by ignoring the regulation requiring a factual description of the criminal investigation he has authorized the special counsel to conduct. It would also give us some insight about whether the investigation is tightly related to Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election, as Rosenstein has intimated, or is more like a fishing expedition.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/450316/manafort-fbi-raid-questions-mueller?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=NR%20Daily%20Monday%20through%20Friday%202017-08-09&utm_term=NR5PM%20Actives

    That would seem to be a reasonable request.

  4. What I would like to know is, just what did Manafort do with the 17 or however many millions he was supposedly paid. Did he buy a yacht? A whole fleet of beemers? Or did he pay anybody off?

      • I would like to see the affidavit in support of the search warrant. I suspect either the judge did not authorize a night time search and the agents exceeded the scope of the warrant or there was some fudging of the facts in the affidavit, both of which have been known to occur. Another very real possibility is that the person reporting the bust got it wrong (intentionally or unintentionally) and the raid was not “pre-dawn” as reported.

          • You have pointed exactly to the problem. There is no “evidence” that anyone has told me which would justify a night time search under these circumstances. Absent that “evidence”, a night time search is presumptively prohibited.

            I would also be interested to know whether the agents “knocked and announced their identity and presence” before entering Manafort’s residence. Again, absent “evidence” sufficient to permit the issuing magistrate to dispense with the knock and announce requirement, knock and announce is part and parcel of 4th Amendment law. Dispensing with knock and announce is almost universally limited to drug dealers (who can flush the contraband) or violent criminals (who might ambush the officers). Manafort is neither. I have difficulty seeing where dispensing with knock and announce applies here. +

            Unless we see the affidavit in support of the search warrant and the warrant itself, I will continue to have my concerns about this search.

            • It would have been cruelly funny had Manafort and his wife thought it was a home invasion and capped ’em with Glocks.

            • Oddly, you are not on the circulation list of those notified of the evidence.

              Till then you are right…plenty is interesting about this event, as well as this case.
              What is also interesting is the (not really) strange hypocrisy and histrionics of those who just cant understand why all the investigating going on. It must be, Trumpets Trump, and they , being faithful recorders and playback machines let loose w the ignorant foggery of “See there is no evidence, must be a witch hunt”.
              All the while the evidence is something actually being professionally sifted through.
              We don’t know the outcome. But there are plenty who do…. and they seem to be screaming the loudest to stop, when the process is barely begun.

              • What is also interesting is the (not really) strange hypocrisy and histrionics of those who just cant understand why all the investigating going on.

                It’s actually understandable considering the investigative efforts put forth for crime(s) that have yet to be identified, compared with actual criminal activities that have had no such efforts. Since I’m not on the circulation list either, I might discover the latter to be equally charged. Until then, the double-standard of justice (hypocrisy) will be called out.

              • Actually, I am not on the circulation list of any of the information that has been leaking out about this investigation. Yet, from what has been leaked, there seems to be a strange dissonance. That there was a pre-dawn raid was leaked, but there has been no evidence leaked justifying a night time raid. Was there really a pre-dawn raid? Or was the leaker and/or reporter exaggerating what occurred to sensationalize what happened? Were government agents acting like cowboys, exceeding the scope of a valid warrant by raiding a house at unauthorized hours? Or did the government agents mislead the court to get the warrant in the first place?

                With all of the leaked information, one would think (if one were inclined to think) that if there was good cause to bust Manafort’s home during the night, that evidence of that good cause would also be leaked. The silence is deafening.

                The return on the warrant would be interesting. That would list the time of entry into Manafort’s home. It might just contradict the leak.

                • Vince Jankoski – the FBI grabbed the briefing books that Manafort was going to use for his testimony before Congress, basically stripping him bare-naked. However, I think this is what they were after.

        • It won’t make much difference. Federal courts use the “good faith exception” to allow evidence to be used at trial as long as the officers operated in “reasonable reliance” on a warrant issued by a detached and neutral magistrate, even where warrant is later found to be defective. I’d trade out the evidence on manafort if the Supremes would strike down the good faith exception, but it’s been around for over 30 years now, so it ain’t happnin.

          • The good faith exception does not apply where the agents exceed the scope of the warrant either spacially or temporally. The good faith exception applies only where the issuing magistrate finds probable cause, authorizes the search, the search is conducted, evidence is seized, and a later reviewing court finds that the magistrate judge erred in finding probable cause. It has no application outside of that context. In fact, it would be hard to argue good faith when the face of a warrant authorizes only a day time search and the government agents conducted a night time search. There is nothing good faith about that.

            Unless the court authorized a night time bust (the standard is good cause), warrants must be executed between 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. Good cause is usually limited to drug dealers and violent criminals. What I have a problem with is what could Mueller have alleged in the affidavit supporting the warrant to establish good cause justifying a night time search. I just don’t see it in this case.

            The good faith exception also does not apply where the government intentionally misleads the court in facts establishing probable cause which is what I suspect the government agents may have done in this case.

    • On what facts or basis do you make this assertion? You seem pretty certain as if you know something not generally known?

      In fact you contradict yourself in two sentences: Saying there is absolutely NO reason… and then questioning what might be the reason.

      Perhaps we’d all be better off pending actual facts?

      • You have it backwards. Warrants must be executed in the daytime unless there is “good cause” to execute them at night. The burden is on the government to present evidence to justify the night time entry. Absent such evidence, there can be no night time entry. No such evidence is in the public domain. With all of the leaks in this case, nothing has been put forward to justify the pre-dawn entry and, for the life of me, I can’t comprehend why a day time search would not have been sufficient in this case. If you or anyone else knows of such evidence to justify a night time search, present it to me and I might change my mind. Until then, we all should be skeptical about why this search was conducted in the pre-dawn hours.

        The Fourth Amendment protects all Americans against unreasonable searches and seizures. If a day time search suffices, it is unreasonable to conduct the search at night.

        • So, assuming the entire judiciary is not in on the conspiracy, and – as others have detailed here and elsewhere – the burden of getting a warrant of this sort is not trivial…. why would you assume in the first place there is no cause?

          You speak of “leaks in this case” , yet this case and Mueller’s office seem to be remarkably free of leaks. Including even this event, which is now 2wks prior.

          That you cannot comprehend why, is a valid question, but it does not have an answer now. If sometime later actual FACTS are submitted that demonstrate illegitimate warrants or whatever, then that will be a good case to make.
          Till then it seems your closing paragraph ought be taken at face value:
          The 4th Amendment appears to have been followed in the sense of having got a search warrant.
          “IF a day time search suffices…” : so apparently it did not, or there was some cause to think otherwise.

          Until we know we do not know.

          Good to ask the question…but having asked it is equally good to wait for the answer…

          • Apparently, I am not being altogether clear. I apologize. Let me try again.

            One of three things assuredly occurred.

            1. The issuing magistrate found good cause to execute the warrant in the pre-dawn hours.
            2. The issuing magistrate did not find good cause to execute the warrant in the pre-dawn hours but government agents violated the terms of the warrant and busted Manafort’s residence in the pre-dawn hours anyway.
            3. The issuing magistrate did not find good cause to execute the warrant in the pre-dawn hours and the warrant was, in fact, executed during daylight hours.

            As of these 3, I actually find #3 the most probable. However, this means that the report that claimed the warrant was executed in the pre-dawn hours was, to coin a phrase, FAKE NEWS, designed to portray Manafort in a false light and his offenses, if any, more serious than they actually were. This does not require a judicial conspiracy. However, it does suggest dishonesty in the media or somewhere else along the line.

            #2 is less probable, but it does happen. Don’t kid yourself.

            #1 is the least probable at all. The alleged offenses at issue are non-violent. There is no reason anyone has suggested why the raid could not have occurred during the day. If you can think of one, let us all know.

            There is no reason to wait for answers to my questions. The bust has already occurred. The warrant has been returned to the court. There is no reason not to know when the warrant was executed and whether the manner of execution was judicially authorized.

            Finally, the Fourth Amendment requires more than a search warrant. It requires reasonable searches and seizures. “Searches” and “seizures” are the nouns. “Reasonable” is the adjective, modifying both “searches” and “seizures”. Merely obtaining a warrant does not insulate the manner of execution of the warrant from challenge; nor does it insulate government agents from violating the terms of the warrant. A search warrant does more than permit a search. A search warrant outlines the terms of the search, i.e., the time and place of the search and the items to be seized. Government agents are not immunized from their actions simply because they have a warrant. They must comply with the warrant’s terms.

            As noted above, I think most probably the agents did comply with the terms of the warrant. The fault is in the reporting. The raid did not occur in the pre-dawn hours, although I remain susceptible of being convinced otherwise.

            • I appreciate your detailed response. I fear moving the checker one more square is likely to be met w resistance.

              So I’ll note 2 things, and ask if you wish to exchange ideas on the thread beyond that.

              1. You relegate option 1 as least likely, yet it is the one that is being reported as the essential fact of the case. It is in the original text of JT post, and , as far as I can tell, the substance of all the actual reporting on the matter.
              It seems to me that in order for you to so discount this you have to have something more than “hope so” or “seems to me” as a basis.
              Not that speculation is not good, and you’ve done that well in options 2 & 3. Who knows they may turn out to be the case… But that is the critical point, to me: to wit: it may turn out the FACTS of the case are Thus and So…

              Till then it seems to me that there is a desire to have a thing be so, and the suppositions are trying to stuff the facts into a shape they will not take.

              2. You cite Fake News.
              I note this w this commentary: The claim of Fake News has got way out of bounds. Most often it seems to be used as a diversion and not insight or even an accurate accounting for the facts of a story.
              Basically, if someone – notably M.Trump – does not appreciate a story about himself (and himself is a chief concern of his) it is de facto Fake News.
              The examples of this syndrome are many, and well documented nearly on a weekly basis.

              Your use of the phrase is not much different, though not self-protecting as w others.

              Fake News is not getting something wrong. It is not reporting an opinion, especially when expressed as such as part of the story. It is not FN when a story, and/or a fact is revealed that you do not like. Yet these are the predominant types of stories that are labeled FN.
              Actual Fake News reports are intentionally made up stories that have some plausibility that conveys a message the authors wish to disseminate not in an opinion piece – which would be normal expressions and use of Free Speech, but in a pernicious propaganda way, which is not.

              This story hardly rises to that level, even if, in the end, there was an error on the timing part as you insist.

              • There is absolutely no evidence that the issuing magistrate found good cause for a night time entry. That, and the fact that there appears to be no reason for busting Manafort’s home at night, makes alternative #1 least probable. I reiterate, if you or someone else can provide a reason for executing a search warrant in the night time for a non-violent offense where the evidence is not easily destroyed, I may change my probabilities.

                I respectfully disagree on your definition of fake news. If the news is incorrect, it is fake and should be disregarded, regardless of whether the reporter intentionally published a falsehood. In fact, I suspect much of what has been characterized as fake news is the result of sloppy investigation or misplaced reliance on an unreliable source rather than an intent to deceive.

                • Vince J: I missed your response…Perhaps it would be best to leave it lie. Then again, there is , at least was, movement in the conversation…So maybe a time or two more won’t be a waste of time…

                  Yours: There is absolutely no evidence that the issuing magistrate found good cause for a night time entry. …

                  > there is no evidence at all about anything at the moment… So I did understand your point along this line. We have a prosecutor who has national acclaim from every side, has held many high posts under many different administrations who is doing his work.
                  So you might as well attack the raid as happening at all, whether it needed to be a morning “no knock” raid or not.

                  > I can understand the ‘wow’ factor…As in, Wow, that seems a bit much, wonder why that happened? But until the facts come out we really cannot say w the certainty you seem to evince that it was too much.
                  If and when it does come out thus, I’ll be on the front lines against it. There is, in other places the rising of too much state/police power.

                  > Oddly, IN my opinion, all this effort and strenuous concern is being spilt over someone (Manaford) who is anything but a white rose, and by connection Trump. When it comes time to be concerned about over wrought police/FBI raids I am first going to be concerned about the way too many times when a raid happens, force is manifest, and people are killed “by mistake”.
                  Let’s make sure our principles on these matters is at least deep enough and consistent enough to account for these incidents also.

                  Yours:
                  I respectfully disagree on your definition of fake news. If the news is incorrect, it is fake and should be disregarded, regardless of whether the reporter intentionally published a falsehood. In fact, I suspect much of what has been characterized as fake news is the result of sloppy investigation or misplaced reliance on an unreliable source rather than an intent to deceive.

                  > A national conversation needs to be had concerning what is meant when FAKE NEWS is invocated. The term is one created to describe the phenom of reports of the level of “Aliens Attack New York” – National Enquirer style… but made w the tone and intent to be believed as actual reporting a true story with the intent of deceiving and influencing the political conversation a certain way.
                  The examples are many…I am thinking of the Pizza -Child Porn story that Clinton was supposedly running.

                  > That is fake news. By your standard, there is no room for news that is reported with the intention to get to the facts, perhaps make a mistake, and issue corrections or amendments…
                  > What is worse is the easy slinging of the slur now with the more specific intent of denigrating and dismissing a story solely on the basis that it is a story the subject would rather not be reported.
                  I think we ought reserve the FakeNews label for the type of intentional deception it was originally coined for.

                  >Trump has created and developed this meme. He is particularly adept at declaiming any and every story that he finds objectionable. That he and his followers (you?) are so easily put off the story by usually a lie that is the claim that a story is fake does not bode well for our nation. He calls Fake News when he is being called out on indisputable facts. I hope examples of that point are not necessary. He provides new ones almost daily, certainly weekly.

                  > The cases you cite of errors are matters that have policies and systems in place to handle them. It is wrong in the 1st degree to destroy the press on such flimsy reasonings, and I would say demagogic motivations.
                  As was well established in our founding, the freedom of the press, however flawed, is the bulwark against all sorts of tyranny.

                  > What is remarkable to me about this is what normally comes after some accusation of error in a news report is a rebuttal.
                  “It was reported that I (my administration or ??) did X. That is not true…What happened was Y”

                  To my recollection, and I would love any examples to the contrary, Trump (being the progenitor & prime user of the FN accusation) I have never heard a rebuttal to the point expressed. Just the bellicose, carny barker “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain” noise. Never, or else very rare is a report made in seriousness examined for its premise, its argument and debating the conclusion.

                  It has got to the place where when Trump and/or his allegiances shout down a point with the FakeNews attack, I presume there is something to be seen if only we would look.

                  >> I consider that a strong point worthy of consideration. Do you?

                  ~michael

                  • The media are not exempt from criticism. They must be held accountable when they are wrong, intentionally or not. This is not destruction of free press. To the contrary, criticism will hopefully improve the press and make it more valuable to the American public. If you don’t like the term fake news, call it poor investigation, bad journalism, sloth, awful judgment, biased reporting or (as I do) simply crap.

                    If you don’t think the media deserves criticism, consider this. Last night, in deference to my better half, I watched a cable news network that I think reports crap. There was a panel discussion about the events in Charlottesville. Instead of discussing the events, the discussion centered on not only what Trump said but what he didn’t say. So, we have gone beyond discussing what Trump says and have passed on to what he doesn’t say. This particular cable news network appears to have what at this point can only be described as a fetish over the words coming out of the president’s mouth. This particular moderator looked like he was about to have an orgasm at various stages in the program as the panel participants mentally masturbated each other.

                    Meanwhile, we learned nothing about the killer, who he is, what is his background, what are his organizational affiliations. Same for the victim. Who is she? Why was she in Charlottesville? How about the two state troopers killed in the copter crash. Who are they? Why did the chopper crash? How did the demonstration turn violent? What organizations supported the demonstrators and counter demonstrators? Why didn’t the governor of Virginia not call out the National Guard sooner? Rather than learning about important events, we learned crap.

  5. I am awed, utterly awed, at the collective knowledge of many of the people posting comments here. They “know,” without having ever seen the application for the search warrant, without having access to the documents and information in possession of the prosecutors, and without seeing any documents that have not yet been seen by prosecutors, that Manafort is not guilty of any crime. They “know” that the judge who approved the search warrant couldn’t possibly be a Republican appointee. I grovel at their feet because of their overwhelming omniscience.

    What is the fount of this knowledge? Kool Aid jars? The “Mooch”? The Orange Catholic Bible?

    Personally, I prefer the “wait and see” approach. I have had the pleasure of helping return documents previously seized pursuant to a search warrant to the owner of those documents after they learned that they were not going to be prosecuted. So the fact that a search warrant was issued and executed on does not guarantee that there will be a criminal prosecution. Manafort has enough money to afford really good lawyers. So let’s wait and see what happens.

    • OC, we knew many things about Mueller with absolute certainty. We know with 100% certainty that Mueller is a corrupt, sleazy, vile, and thoroughly contemptible agent of the Elite Establishment. If you don’t know that, then you know nothing about Mueller. Here is a mini-primer that barely scratches the surface about Mueller: https://www.meetup.com/Indivisible-North-Seattle/messages/boards/thread/50905380/

      We also know that Mueller is a close friend of James Comey, also a corrupt, sleazy, vile, and thoroughly contemptible agent of the Elite Establishment. So, scumbags stick together.

      We also know that if Mueller had just tiny, tiny sense of decency and honor–which is absurd given the foregoing–he would have recused himself from investigating Trump and his associates. So, obviously, even a tiny, tiny sense of decency and honor is out of the question for him.

      Next, we also know that the entire purported Russian-Trump connection is a complete fabrication concocted by CIA, which is a tool of the Elite Establishment. https://thefloridasqueeze.com/2017/08/06/leaked-sy-hersh-audio-suggests-seth-rich-saga-points-to-larger-us-intelligence-bombshell/

      Finally, we also know that after spending millions upon millions of dollars investigating Trump and his associates, the best that the FBI has been able to serve the American public has been a double nothingburger, with side vapor salad, to be washed down with an air-shake.

      Thus, I DO know with 100% certainty that the predawn raid of Manafort is total, complete, ultra-concentrated BS. ALL intelligent people know this. They KNOW that Mueller is a fraud and is completely incapable of conducting any genuine investigation even if he had a shred of integrity, which he does not. There is nothing to wait for. A double nothingburger served with a vapor side salad, washed down with an air-shake is the only diet that the fraud and criminal Mueller will be serving, while he continues to charge the American public tens of millions of dollars in legal and “investigative” fees. Who says crime doesn’t pay?

      • Somehow, I suspect that the fount of your knowledge is the same fount of knowledge that resulted in some people declaring that all persons whose last name ends in a vowel are dishonest.

        • Like I said, OC, you know nothing about Mueller. And that’s only a tiny, tiny part of what you don’t know. Have a double nothingburger served with a vapor side salad and washed down with an air-shake on me.

        • Except the little itty fact that comey’s company did clintons taxes! And comey did what he did FOR a special prosecutor…..where is the predawn raid on cgi?

      • Thanks Ralph, It’s to late for me to post.

        Good enough, I may get back to his ignorant azz tomorrow.

        Apparently he doesn’t understand the warrant that Patrick Henry, the Intel Community & Special Forces operate under….Traitors Foreign & Domestic are all a target!

        The great intel I’m getting is that us older guys need not do much other then post & they’ll do the real work of cleaning out this nest of Traitors with in a few weeks at the right time.

        • “A charge of treason is never to be taken [nor hurled] lightly by anyone.”

          From Chief Justice John Marshall’s instructions to the jury in The Burr Trial.

        • Like I said, MM, people like you know nothing about Mueller. And that’s only a tiny, tiny part of what you don’t know. Have a double nothingburger served with a vapor side salad and washed down with an air-shake on me.

        • And Trump interviewed Mueller to replace Comey who he fired who then triggered a special counsel that turned out to be Mueller who was hired by Rosenstein who was hired by Sessions who was hired by Trump. This is gonna be good. No one knows what’s coming down the pike. No one.

      • You “know” all of this? Magic 8-ball? Pravda Faux News? The disguised guy at your last tinfoil hat convention? Your nonsensical screed merely reveals that you don’t even know what you don’t know. Pro tip: when your “sources” are “sovereign citizens,” members of “militias,” conspiracy kooks or folks who live in a camper, reliance on them only exposes you to well-earned ridicule.

        FYI: lawyers who commit crimes (and even less) get disbarred. Get a life, or a hobby.

        This directed at crazy uncle ralphie

      • What you “know” vs what you think you know vs what actually is true barely registers as a measurable ratio.

        I know, you’ll scream and holler your right, and cite every non-sequitur in the book… A well worn book by now, and you’ll still actually know less than nothing.

        But you must hate. What I don’t understand is what do you get out of it?

      • You actually Know nothing, as is detailed & manifest in your very detailed post here.

        But what we, your readers, get to learn, and thus Know about you is you are a true believer and among those who are unmoved by even the most blatant of facts that indict your leader.

        You seem to be of the mind, “Trump, right or wrong, but Trump first and last”. A strange twisting of the devotion usually reserved for one’s country.

  6. If Manafort is stupid enough to enter or to retain ANYTHING incriminating on any of his devices or in any of his homes after more than a year of being “suspect” and/or “high profile,” he deserves to be prosecuted – for Felony Idiocy.

    • You’d be surprised how often the word “felon” is used in the same sentence as the word “idiot.”

  7. Notably, Manafort had just turned over documents to the Senate Intelligence Committee the day before. The timing makes the raid particularly intriguing.

    Out of curiosity: Is it possible there was something alarming in the documents submitted to the Senate Intelligence Committee that may have been shared with Special Counsel Mueller that prompted a search warrant overnight? How much time would it take for Mueller to obtain a search warrant like this?

    • Putting together a proper “package” seeking a federal search warrant normally takes real work and time, although a portion of the legal discussion regarding probable cause in the application will be “boilerplate.” Prosecutors don’t want to make a mistake in putting the application together because, if the search warrant package is defective, there is a risk that the evidence obtained as the result of the search warrant will be suppressed in court. This being a high profile investigation, it is very likely that a high degree of care was taken in putting together the application.

      Once the application for a search warrant is filed, it is up to the Judge as to whether the application is approved and how long it takes to approve the application. Then they need to assemble the team to execute the warrant. That entire process doesn’t happen overnight. Prosecutors may have been hoping for the execution of the search warrant prior to the production date of the documents produced for the Senate, but may have been delayed by the Judge, etc. The application was presumably sealed by the Court, however, so there is no way to know for sure how long it took to obtain the search warrant. If there are truly exigent circumstances, things can move very quickly.

      • Thank you Oliver Clozoff for answering my question.

        I read today that Mr. Manafort is no longer represented by WilmerHale and has returned (or in the process thereof) to his former counsel Miller & Chevalier. To quote Lewis Carroll’s Alice …”curiouser and curiouser!”.

      • I had additional questions about this search warrant.

        What recourse does Special Counsel Mueller have if Mr. Manafort ignored a subpoena to submit documents?

        Would Special Counsel be able to use this type of search warrant discussed here to get documents under subpoena?

        We have no way of knowing what evidence Special Counsel Mueller has or has requested. Or which Mr. Manafort has supplied or denied, right?

        So is it possible that Mr. Manafort was in contempt of a subpoena? And this was the course of action necessary to get him to comply? Sorry about my lack of knowledge here…I’m just trying to understand the logic behind this.

  8. When do we get to raid the homes of Comey, Mueller, Clinton, Obama, Lynch, McCabe, Brennan, Clapper, Rice, Power, etc?

      • HenryKissingerBilderberg’s picture
        HenryKissingerB… HenryKissingerBilderberg Aug 9, 2017 10:20 AM

        did they manage to NOT shoot his dog?
        TahoeBilly2012’s picture
        TahoeBilly2012 HenryKissingerBilderberg Aug 9, 2017 10:21 AM

        But Hillary’s 33,000 emails are gone forever. I see how this works.

        LOL, Total BS by Mueller & Rosenstein.

    • 1) let me guess, this is what Pravda Faux News is shilling today;
      2) talking bad about the buffoon your types were conned into electing is not a criminal offense; and
      3) what, you gotta mouse in your pocket?

      this is to “WE are family” ivan

  9. The “deep state” ruling class marketed a “raid” on a house two weeks after it took place.

    It is only a coincidence that, on the same day, President Trump had the potential to benefit from “war” headlines.

    • ebworthen FrozenGoodz Aug 9, 2017 10:58 AM

      Pre-dawn raid by the STASI agents to find a bottle of Stolichnaya and a Matryoshka nesting doll.

      Fear, intimidation, guilty until proven innocent and by assumption.

      Pre-dawn raid? WTF!?!? Easier to plant evidence that way?

    • Sure, if confirming that he really is an ignorant, foppish clown is a “benefit” then he was all in…

      This is to “watching a different show than everyone else” george

    • George, the only way the deep state could have done this is if the deep state hired Trump who hired Sessions who hired Rosenstein who hired Mueller. Why would the deep state hire Trump, George?

  10. Watchdog Files Complaint Against DNC For Colluding With Ukraine During The Election

    As liberal media outlets continue to claim that Trump Jr. violated campaign laws by ‘seeking an in-kind contribution from a foreign national in the form of opposition research’, the conservative group, Foundation for Accountability & Civic Trust (FACT), is now turning that allegation on the DNC over its collusion with Ukrainian officials.

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-08-09/watchdog-files-complaint-against-dnc-colluding-ukraine-during-election

  11. I don’t think anyone knows what’s really going on here. Would Rosenstein need to sign off on this?

    Does anyone think Manafort would be stupid enough to leave documents lying around his house? He testified the day before, so why didn’t they just ask him for whatever instead of going for the big show of an early morning raid? Because it’s all part of the mind games being played to keep chipping away at public opinion. It’s no coincidence that the reports of Trump’s low popularity poll numbers were released this week as well.

    Trump already tweeted about the power of presidential pardons. And depending on what they find –Manafort knows he will likely be protected by the president so he has little incentive to flip under Mueller’s pressure – and that’s assuming there’s any information he has to turn over.

    If they are going after Manafort for some rarely enforced FARA violations then John Podesta is watching because he knows he will be next.

  12. Why wasn’t Mueller or Comey busting down the doors of Islamic Terrorist Masque, Hillary Clinton’s Servers, Obama……

    Well good news Roger Stone tells us today AG Sessions has Southern District of New York investigating some case against Hillary Clinton.

  13. You know the law shouldn’t be used as a roving commission for political gain. That’s exactly what’s going on here and it stinks. Nobody can withstand microscopic scrutiny of every transaction in life

    • Feels like we are living in Russia with a secret police! I thought Mueller was looking into Russian tampering with our election machines, now we are at your door before you get up about what? This is really scary. I never thought this would happen in America!

      • Silly rabbit….No one is looking into Russian tampering with our election machines because it never happened. In fact, no one is even looking at the DNC server that was allegedly “hacked” by Russia. Where is the DNC server? Long gone. Ever wonder why the FBI had little interest in examining it and just relied on the report of an obscure third party named Crowd Strike that no one had ever heard of? Yeah. But the Democrat and media narrative is still: Russia hacked the election. And to this day, no one knows what that means exactly.

      • What, that the rubes would get conned into electing a grifter who’s completely unqualified to perform any essential functions of the Office of the President of the United States? And who then would install all his quasi-criminal cronies into government positions which require some sort of expertise and knowledge of how the United States government works? Sing it sistah, amen…

        This is to “fool me once” sandi

        • “Completely unqualified”? That’s not even remotely true. What qualified Obama? 5 minutes as a senator and some community organizing? Please. The true con was your savior BHO who was unqualified and incompetent to begin with in addition to already being corrupt. He then proceeded to corrupt every agency under his command from DOJ to EPA, NSA, and IRS and everything in between including the press. Most everyone paying attention knows it. Trump spared the country the guaranteed disaster of a Hillary Clinton presidency. That is the truth Mr. Fool Me Once.

            • Ken:
              Well I like mothing and its more colorful, parallel activity, butterflyng. Don’t get me started on cocooning. As to leading us to nuclear war, a good rule of thumb is that if someone is threatening to blow you up and has the ability to do so, it’s not war but self-defense when you blow him up first.

            • I think he’s scaring little Kim. Trump saved us from another Clinton. The things Obama did would have been ignored and added to by HillBill. Obama spent his last year’s using his infamous “pen” to author 30+ Executive Orders. Most were unconstitutional, never gone through the congressional process, but he knew McConnell and Ryan wouldn’t challenge. Trump has reversed every one. We are now functioning under our Constitution again. Staying in a country abiding by its laws was a big factor in Trump’s win.

        • What, that the rubes would get conned into electing a grifter who’s completely unqualified to perform any essential functions of the Office of the President of the United States?

          Obama’s out of office now. The rubes who elected him haven’t been terribly reflective about it (with the odd exception of Megan McArdle).

          • President Barack HUSSEIN Obama II was the greatest Prsident of the United States since Harry Truman.

            And, he was black, and likely dated white women in his youth, the idea of which must infuriate you.

            This it to “wishing for the good ole days” suzie

    • Mespo,

      How can Mueller & Rosenstein be involved in investigating Trump when they are both Suspects in Criminal Cases against Trump? Sarc off LOL

      AKA: FISA report against both for illegally spying on Trump/Team Trump. Dennis Montgomery’s hard drives verifying more of the illegal spying. etc…

  14. What evidence exists that anyone has actively worked with foreign entities against our national security interests? What would such acts look like? What has Trump and his administration actually done that would indicate they are working against our national security? Same question for Obama and his administration?

      • Uncle Fetzer’s back at work? His last project was 9/11 trutherism. Before that it was Kennedy Assassination nonsense. It’s pretty amusing that he taught philosophy of science at one of the state colleges in Minnesota.

      • Fetzer’s piece is largely a compendium of work written by others. Although Fetzer tends to engage in speculations without foundation and thus is not generally a credible analyst of events, in this particular case, since he is merely repeating well-documented instances demonstrating that Mueller’s a lying corrupt scumbag, this article is satisfactory (even though he should give credit to others). See, for example, the following historical analysis, written earlier than Fetzer’s piece: https://www.meetup.com/Indivisible-North-Seattle/messages/boards/thread/50905380/

      • Federal law forbids such connections.

        That doesn’t answer any of the questions I asked.

        If Trump and his administration were doing the evil bidding of foreign governments or NGO’s, what should we expect to see? What evidence exists that is happening today?

        Same questions for Obama and his administration.

    • “What evidence exists that anyone has actively worked with foreign entities against our national security interests? ”

      Well there is that Espionage & Treason issue with Obama, Hillary, Mueller & others involved with the Uranium One deal with those Ruskies. LOL

      Oh, I forgot, people like that are above the law.

      • Oky1,
        That is one example that comes to mind. I’m trying to be objective here and point to something Trump has done since he took office that would indicate he is acting contrary to his oath of office.

        • Olly,

          That’s just it, Rosenstein & Mueller are “Fishing” for a crime rather then investigating a crime they knew that had happened!

          • Oky1,
            While they are busy looking for evidence of a crime, what has Trump actually done as President that would substantiate the Left’s fears that Trump is not fulfilling his role as President? What High Crimes and Misdemeanors has he committed that would warrant impeachment?

        • 30+ Obama Executive Orders rescinded, some unconstitutional, but “he had a pen”. Supreme Court Justice Gorsuch, Brought Republican Senators to the WH, twice! Collins was self-serving, she wants to run for Gov of Maine. I have no idea why Murkowski went from yes to no. Democrats running for reelection in red states could have scored some points, especially Manchin, Trump won WV by 47% and would probably have endorsed him. I think,he should switch parties!

          Listening to McConnell they never did review all the passed House bills. Why not? What do these people do?

          Mitch, we are in the 21st Century. You act like we’re still in the 1990’s

            • And he will do more. He doesn’t give up. Did you watch the debates? He was awful, but he won. He campaigned 24 hours a day the week before voting. So did his kids. I laughed when he announced, but I voted for him and happy he won!

    • Olly, you seem to be demanding access to classified information. Assuming that you don’t already have a top-secret security clearance, then you’ll probably have to stay alive for another twenty-four years to get the classified answers to your question.

      • Not at all Diane. I’m not looking for the sources of any intelligence gathered. We have laws in place as a check against putting our national security at risk. So the question is regarding what types of actions would we expect to see if members within our government class were compromised and putting our national security at risk?

        Here are some examples of actions that might need to be questioned:

        Would the sharing of classified information purposely over non-secure servers be such a risk?

        Would selling control of 20% of our own uranium deposits to a foreign government or company be such a risk?

        Would trading an American deserter for 5 radical Islamic militants be such a risk?

        Would enabling a major foreign bank to launder money within the US banking system for terrorist organizations and drug cartels be such a risk?

        Would running guns from American companies to drug cartels be such a risk?

        Would supporting a hostile foreign government’s pursuit of nuclear power by removing sanctions and providing $100 billion in cash be such a risk?

        Would receiving donations from foreign governments and NGO’s into one’s foundation while holding a cabinet level position be such a risk?

        I’m all for having oversight of our government class, and citizens for that matter, where we prevent actions that would potentially threaten our nation security. I ask these questions because while the ongoing investigations are in search of connections with foreign governments and NGO’s; I see no evidence of actual actions by Trump or his administration that warrant this investigation IF those actions mentioned above do not rise to the level or national security risk deserving of the same attention.

  15. Americans need to build trap doors in the floors by their outside doors. One in. One out. So when the raiders come and the owner pushes an electronic button the floor collapses and the raiders end up in a pit full of rotten manure. Post a sign: “Do not knock or break in before I wake.”

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