Schiff Calls For Prosecutions of Those Who Lied on Steele Dossier . . . After Attacking The Durham Investigation

In a bizarre exchange this week with former State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) was confronted with his relentless promoting of the now debunked Steele dossier in prior years. Schiff surprisingly declared “First of all, whoever lied to the FBI or Christopher Steele should be prosecuted, and they are.” (It is actually not a crime to lie to Christopher Steele under 18 U.S.C. 1001. It is a crime to lie to federal investigators). It was a curious statement from someone who attacked the appointment of the Special Counsel and, with other leading Democrats, did his level best to kill the investigation. If it had been left to Schiff, there would have been no John Durham and no Durham indictments.

I have been writing about the Durham investigation for two years and the need to look into serious questions linking Clinton associates with the advancement of false claims of collusion. There was a constant barrage of ridicule and abuse for those writing on the investigation. Members and legal experts lined up to claim that there was nothing to be found and that Mueller had already revealed all that needed to be known about the scandal. The recent investigations, of course, disprove those attacks by detailing new evidence of a coordinated and concerted effort by the Clinton campaign to create this scandal.

Schiff previously claimed that he had direct evidence of collusion in his Committee despite Mueller finding no such evidence to support criminal charges.  Schiff however has never produced that evidence.

Durham has now shown how Clinton associates engineered the scandal and may have even been the true sources for the most salacious details in the dossier. In 2017, American intelligence said that it believed that the dossier may have been used by Russian intelligence to spread disinformation.

Schiff opposed Durham while insisting that Mueller should be allowed to continue his own investigation. Judging from the three indictments by Durham, it is now clear why Democrats sought to kill the investigation.

Schiff told MSNBC that ongoing investigations would constitute “tearing down our democracy” and would serve as a way to “delegitimize” a president.  This also included any continued investigation of the Hunter Biden scandal. Schiff denounced the Durham investigation as a “politically motivated” effort despite the fact that Durham suspended any public actions before the election to avoid even the appearance of political manipulation.  He resisted demands from Trump to issue a report before the election.

Schiff raised the termination of the Durham investigation by Attorney General Garland before Durham could issue any indictments or reports.  He added “The appointment is not consistent with the language of the statute that he’s relying on and can be rescinded, I think, by the next attorney general. I would presume the next attorney general will look to see if there is any merit to the work that John Durham is doing.”

On the campaign trail, Biden also dismissed the “investigation of the investigators.”

Likewise, then Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), sent a letter to Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz to demand the investigation of Durham as a possible political shill. She was joined by Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Ct.), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), and Cory Booker (D-N.J.).

Notably, the letter from the senators in 2020 raised one of the greatest concerns for Democrats about this investigation: any Special Counsel report. These were the same members demanding not just the release of the Mueller report but some even wanted the release of the unredacted report (including grand jury information that cannot be publicly disclosed absent a court order).  However, in 2020 they wanted to kill any report by Durham: “In addition, it remains unclear what rules and authority permit the public release of a ‘report’ by U.S. Attorney Durham, raising additional concerns about the legitimacy of his appointment and work.”

Many of the same members and pundits continued to mock the Durham investigation even after his first indictment. MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow (who was one of the chief promoters of the Steele dossier) even called upon fired FBI Special Agent Peter Strzok to discredit the latest indictment.

For his part, Schiff’s sudden belief that people need to be prosecuted over the Steele dossier would be more compelling if he had not done all that he could to end the investigation that uncovered such alleged crimes.

This is all quite swampy, of course.  However, Schiff has long been assuring the public that there is nothing to see here and that rodents of unusual size do not reside in this particular swamp:






142 thoughts on “Schiff Calls For Prosecutions of Those Who Lied on Steele Dossier . . . After Attacking The Durham Investigation”

  1. Congress works at our behest. We can terminate them if we want. The Founders said so.

  2. Bonus points, Professor Turley, for working The Princess Bride into your post! 🙂

  3. So, Adam Schiff says that “[W]hoever lied to the FBI or Christopher Steele should be prosecuted[.]” Okay, since we know that Schiff has spoken many times with Christopher Wray of the FBI about the Steele Dossier, it stands to reason that Schiff lied to the FBI, since he knew that the Steele Dossier was a lie from the start. Of course, we must readily acknowledge that Schiff will not turn himself in for lying to the FBI anytime in our lifetimes. Schiff’s attitude is that since he lies all of the time, it should not matter when, where, why, or how he lies because lying is as reflexive to him as breathing.

  4. Some of those posting here tell us that Adam Schiff is a fine upstanding citizen. Remember, Schiff is the fellow who said that he had seen written proof of the Trump Russia conspiracy. He was asked to produce his proof and he could not. It would seem that to consider that he was lying should not be out of the question. He hides behind the “it’s classified” curtain. Do you really think that if he really had the goods on Trump that he would give a damn if it was classified? After all, he didn’t give a damn that Hillary had classified material on her secret hacked server. Man there are some slimy politicians but Adam Schiff meets the classic definition of slimiest in Webster’s explanation of the meaning of words.

  5. So we have another statement from The Washington Post concerning their previous reporting on RussiaGate in light of the new Durham indictments “The indictment raises new questions about whether Sergei Millian was a source for the Steele dossier, as the Post reported in 2017,” Post executive editor Sally Buzbee said in a statement last week. “We are continuing to report on the origins and ramifications of the document.” In other words they now find it necessary to change their tune.

    1. But have yet to return the Pulitzers they won for 5 years of lies. Pulitzers are now as worthless as the Nobel Peace Prize that Barry won for being black, and the Emmy that Cuomo won for killing Seniors in Nursing Homes.

      1. Wen Bars, good Post. I offer for your comedic pleasure the requirement to receive a Pulitzer Prize found on the Pulitzer website. “ What news organizations are eligible for the journalism competition? Entries must come from a U.S. newspaper, magazine or news site that publishes regularly. In all cases, entries must adhere to the highest journalistic principles. Broadcast media and their websites are ineligible in all categories. Entries that involve collaboration between an eligible organization and ineligible media will be considered if the eligible organization does the preponderance of the work and publishes it at least simultaneously with the ineligible partner”. Please note the part on “highest journalistic principles”. They should include a paragraph on the highest principles for award giving organizations. It’s been written that they should give the awards back. What should happen is that Pulitzer should take the awards back. Hardy har har.

  6. Love all the angsty angst from Turley and the right on Schiff. Here’s the deal: Durham is a make up call. Trump got elected with the help of the Russians. Trump was impeached twice, correctly each time. The right got behind a con man carnival barker in order to get big tax breaks for the super rich out of the deal, and now they have to peddle hard to distract from the fact they backed the single most irresponsible and corrupt and incompetent authoritarian wannabe that has sought the presidency in modern U.S. history…

    Then he tried to pull off a coup when he lost the election in ’20. And if ever there is a former president that deserves to serve jail time for treason, it’s trump l’orange. Both for his encouraging insurrection efforts on 1/6 and also fo his election tampering across multiple states in the aftermath of the election.

    And Biden just dunked on you with an infrastructure bill that trump talked about wanting his entire one term failed presidency. That’s after being responsible for distributing the vaccine trump showed little care for, full stop.

    Not that Biden is without his faults, his efforts in the pull out of Afghanistan left much to be desired and came across as a tad bit cruel. He’s left trump’s idiotic tariff taxes in place. He got a total pass on the wildly chaotic Haitian coup (that had to have the okay of the CIA) in the summer. And he’d certainly do himself justice by getting the Build Back Better Act through and to light a fire under the butt of Merrick Garland as well as getting on voting rights…, so there’s much work to be done.

    But cracking on Schiff when he’s one of the most principled guys in Washington? Something tells me this has more to do with the past legal history you guys have crossed paths on, Turley.

    1. Oh, and yes, the constant deflecting by the focus on the Steele dossier all the while knowing it’s not what got Mueller digging up information is just so obvious by now. Well, maybe not on this blog, but certainly out in the wider world.

    2. Anonymous continues to play the same old tune. But now even The NewYork Times, The Washington Post and Politico Magazine say the got the story wrong. What do they call people who have lost a sense of reality?

      1. TIT: no one cares about the Steele Dossier. Retrumplicans keep trying to claim that the Russia investigation was instigated by the Dossier, but it wasn’t. And, the evidence that Trump’s campaign fed insider polling data to Russian hackers who used it to help Trump cheat his way into office, won’t change, no matter the outcome of the Durham investigation. IMHO, the Durham investigation was instigated to give talking points to Fox News hopes.

        1. Natacha, the investigation began with the illegal surveillance of Carter Paige by the FBI through the use of a FISA warrant. The head of the FBI, James Comey even let Trump know about the Steele Dossier but he continued to use it as a reason to spy on a member of the Trump campaign. Do you really think that any of it would have happened without the Steele Dossier? You may want to erase it from your personalities but people with a mind that thinks will remember this document that is finally being debunked even by the main stream media. I guess that The NewYork Times, The Washington Post, Politico Magazine and The New Yorker Magazine The Intercept are all ginning up their Republican talking points. To try to say that the Steele Dossier was not instrumental can only be considered a ranting. It must be very difficult for you to see all your trusted news sources turn their back on you. It would be nice to say we all feel your pain but we don’t.

          1. Wait, what? Are you suggesting that Biden’s current National Security Advisor may be indicted by Durham?

            Say it ain’t so. (hehe, can’t wait, gettin’ some popcorn ready to pop along with the Durham indictments that start poppin’)

    3. The communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats, RINOs) have undertaken a massive deployment their “rapid response” “white blood cell” trolls across the land.

      Whatever are they so deathly afraid of?

      Is John “Dudley Will-He-Do-Right” Durham an existential threat?

      Oh, you betcha!

    4. Anonymous, we have found no proof that Bigfoot ever existed. Anonymous responds, well just cause there’s no evidence doesn’t mean Bigfoot is not out there. Just like when interviewing Christopher Steel George Stephanopoulas said that just because the Trump pee tape has never been produced it doesn’t mean that it’s not out there. There must be a medical foundation somewhere that treats Trump Derangement Syndrome. It truly is a serious mental illness.

    5. George w Bush was a war criminal… Trump was an idiot. People like you have ruined the American Left.

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