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LGR4GM

Donald J Trump, your thoughts on his Presidency

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On Tuesday, May 07, 2019 at 8:50 AM, LGR4GM said:

What an interesting week. Barr refuses to hand over redacted Mueller report. Munchen refuses to turn over Trump's tax returns. Trump is threatening more tariffs and has started to suggest his first 2 years in office were "stolen". 

 

 

To the bolded: not exactly.  He's released the redacted report publicly (~2% classified, 98% released; with justification used for redactions included with the redacted report) and has released a less redacted report (apparently unredacting things that aren't pertaining to ongoing grand jury investigations) to Congress.  The items that have been unredacted for that version remain classified, which means they cannot be publicly disclosed; which is likely why, as of last night, still no Congressional Democrats had reviewed that version of the report.

He legally cannot disclose matters pending before an active GJ investigation.  Chairman Nadler knows this.  AG Barr has offered to work with the House Judiciary committee to resolve this matter, but rather than negotiate, the Committee voted to recommend charging AG Barr w/ civil contempt of Congress.

Edited by Taro T

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Should have said "un-redacted" that was a typo. 

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9 hours ago, LGR4GM said:

Should have said "un-redacted" that was a typo. 

Realized that was a typo.  Even with that though, there's not much that Barr could release that he hadn't already released as he'd given them a less redacted version that apparently only kept matters currently pending before Grand Juries redacted.  Supposedly over 99.9% of volume 2 was unredacted.  As of a day ago, none of the Democrats had reviewed the less redacted document.

He legally can't disclose matters pending before a Grand Jury.

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On 5/8/2019 at 3:19 PM, Taro T said:

To the bolded: not exactly.  He's released the redacted report publicly (~2% classified, 98% released; with justification used for redactions included with the redacted report) and has released a less redacted report (apparently unredacting things that aren't pertaining to ongoing grand jury investigations) to Congress.  The items that have been unredacted for that version remain classified, which means they cannot be publicly disclosed; which is likely why, as of last night, still no Congressional Democrats had reviewed that version of the report.

He legally cannot disclose matters pending before an active GJ investigation.  Chairman Nadler knows this.  AG Barr has offered to work with the House Judiciary committee to resolve this matter, but rather than negotiate, the Committee voted to recommend charging AG Barr w/ civil contempt of Congress.

Your numbers of 2% of the report being redacted and 98% public seem incorrect. Looking at the report, clearly much more ilthan 2% is redacted, and I've seen other analyses putting that percentage closer to 7%. 5% difference may seem small, but it's hard to have much faith in the rest of this post after leading with a blatant mistruth.

If Barr really cared about transparency, he could definitely release more of the GJ materials. It isn't illegal as has been claimed. These here are multiple exemptions to rule 6e, and following the historical precedent set by the Watergate and Starr investigations would see this information released (although the legal framework has changed some since then).

How do law-and-order Republicans feel about Barr and Trump Jr. refusing to comply with subpoenas?

 

 

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26 minutes ago, atoq said:

Your numbers of 2% of the report being redacted and 98% public seem incorrect. Looking at the report, clearly much more than 2% is redacted, and I've seen other analyses putting that percentage closer to 7%. 5% difference may seem small, but it's hard to have much faith in the rest of this post after leading with a blatant mistruth.

If Barr really cared about transparency, he could definitely release more of the GJ materials. It isn't illegal as has been claimed. These here are multiple exemptions to rule 6e, and following the historical precedent set by the Watergate and Starr investigations would see this information released (although the legal framework has changed some since then).

How do law-and-order Republicans feel about Barr and Trump Jr. refusing to comply with subpoenas?

 

 

Well, considering, of the 448 pages of the report there are about 116 with a full line or more of redaction and of those only about 32 that are "heavily" redacted (about 50% or more redacted), it is very difficult to believe as much as 7% had been redacted.  Let's split the difference & say 3-4% was redacted.  (Still expect that's high, but whatever it is, it is.  I trust the 2% estimates, having seen the report myself; but am fine w/ conceding that may be low.)  And the vast majority of the redactions were in Volume 1.  So, the part that the House Judiciary seemed to be more interested (Volume 2) (that was definitely the part Senate D's were interested in) has already been nearly fully unredacted and apparently nearly the entirety of that was released to Congress.  

The exact %ages redacted don't alter the fact that Nadler could have seen more than was available to the public, yet chose not to.  If he really wanted to see more of the report, why not negotiate over it rather than IMMEDIATELY hold a vote on Contempt?.  You may be correct that some of what was redacted for Grand Jury reasons or some of the redactions for other reasons MAY have been releasable, but Barr seems to have addressed that by offering to negotiate with the Committee over potentially releasing more of the report to them.  He actually did do that, the letter to Nadler was released.  Nadler refused.  Why?

Considering the background on Barr's refusal to testify before the House Committee at literally the same time he was testifying before the Senate, I'm not at all surprised nor upset that he avoided the obvious attempt at a perjury trap.  The House Judiciary Committee wanted to use staff attorneys to darn near literally interrogate him.  Considering almost all of the members are attorneys themselves & can have their staff attorneys write their Q's for them, really failing to see why the need to change the normal committee procedure.

Didn't realize Junior had refused the SSCI subpoena.  Subpoena just went out yesterday.

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Actually, I think the Democrats were pretty clear that they refused Barr's offer because the report contents would have been restricted to a few select congressional members and they would have been forbidden to discuss with their colleagues. It seems the Democrats are trying to promote full transparency of the report's contents, and I think playing hardball is fair given the deeply misleading rollout of the report and subsequent  media coverage (as per Mueller's opinion). I'm not sure how any American could argue against full transparency in this case.

A 'perjury trap' only seems to be a real threat to people that are lying or hiding the truth. Barr doesn't seem to need a trap anyways, as he was already skirting perjury after obviously misleading statements about Mueller's team reaction to the initial summary report released. To avoid lying under oath, he can also just say he can't remember, like Donald did 37 times on his take home test from Mueller (with help from his lawyers). That's with one of the great memories of all time!

 

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2 hours ago, atoq said:

Actually, I think the Democrats were pretty clear that they refused Barr's offer because the report contents would have been restricted to a few select congressional members and they would have been forbidden to discuss with their colleagues. It seems the Democrats are trying to promote full transparency of the report's contents, and I think playing hardball is fair given the deeply misleading rollout of the report and subsequent  media coverage (as per Mueller's opinion). I'm not sure how any American could argue against full transparency in this case.

Sounds like the issue is not with redaction but classification. The public report is not classified because of the redactions. Unredacting would force an upgrade in classification. If the committee members would be restricted in their access it means they do not possess the required clearance and/or kneed to know which are two different things; both required for access. Therefore, it sounds like the committee wants the AG to downgrade the classification of the report to a level equal to that of committee member's clearance. Not everything can be downgraded. I assume the committee members know this. The POTUS has the authority to declassify as he sees fit. However this should not be applied simply at the request of the legislature because national security concerns must be taken into consideration. If the members do not possess the clearance and/or need to know its on them, not the AG to rectify.

 

 

Edited by SABRES 0311

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7 hours ago, atoq said:

Actually, I think the Democrats were pretty clear that they refused Barr's offer because the report contents would have been restricted to a few select congressional members and they would have been forbidden to discuss with their colleagues. It seems the Democrats are trying to promote full transparency of the report's contents, and I think playing hardball is fair given the deeply misleading rollout of the report and subsequent  media coverage (as per Mueller's opinion). I'm not sure how any American could argue against full transparency in this case.

A 'perjury trap' only seems to be a real threat to people that are lying or hiding the truth. Barr doesn't seem to need a trap anyways, as he was already skirting perjury after obviously misleading statements about Mueller's team reaction to the initial summary report released. To avoid lying under oath, he can also just say he can't remember, like Donald did 37 times on his take home test from Mueller (with help from his lawyers). That's with one of the great memories of all time!

 

You say you "don't know how any American could argue against full transparency in this case" knowing full well that it is illegal for the FULL report to be released.  You also are fine with going directly to contempt charges rather than attempting to negotiate a solution (the way adults would) because of THE MEDIA COVERAGE of the report which requires the committee to play hard ball.  Considering you also avoided responding to my questions, there doesn't seem much point in further attempting to discuss this with you.

And when the committee would desperately like you (AG Barr) to go away via recusal at a minimum or better yet via removal from office, then avoiding a perjury trap would be a wise decision.  And attempting to change the rules by which the AG would've been testifying was clearly attempting to set up a perjury trap.  He'd agreed to testify under the standard committee format.  He only refused to testify when they tried to change the format.  And, pretty sure he'd already testified there back in April (that may have been before a different committee, thus the 'pretty sure') so they were ok with him testifying the normal way back then; why the change now?

Considering you essentially accused me of being a liar in your 1st reply to one of my posts "leading with a blatent mistruth" and haven't responded to my questions with your next post, and there is much to get done before a client heads out of town today, pretty sure I am done here.  Enjoy your weekend, hopefully you get better weather than we have here.

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11 hours ago, Taro T said:

Realized that was a typo.  Even with that though, there's not much that Barr could release that he hadn't already released as he'd given them a less redacted version that apparently only kept matters currently pending before Grand Juries redacted.  Supposedly over 99.9% of volume 2 was unredacted.  As of a day ago, none of the Democrats had reviewed the less redacted document.

He legally can't disclose matters pending before a Grand Jury.

Good info, it seemed a little sketchy when the Democrats went all contempt on Barr. Of course Barr seems a little sketchy but still. 

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8 hours ago, SABRES 0311 said:

Sounds like the issue is not with redaction but classification. The public report is not classified because of the redactions. Unredacting would force an upgrade in classification. If the committee members would be restricted in their access it means they do not possess the required clearance and/or kneed to know which are two different things; both required for access. Therefore, it sounds like the committee wants the AG to downgrade the classification of the report to a level equal to that of committee member's clearance. Not everything can be downgraded. I assume the committee members know this. The POTUS has the authority to declassify as he sees fit. However this should not be applied simply at the request of the legislature because national security concerns must be taken into consideration. If the members do not possess the clearance and/or need to know its on them, not the AG to rectify.

 

 

I would be more concerned with the man in the oval office as a security concern than with some info in the report. 

I find it hard to believe that members on some of these committees don't have high enough security clearance, in fact I highly doubt they don't. If Don Jr or Kushner can get clearance than members of Congress sure as hell should. 

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1 hour ago, LGR4GM said:

I would be more concerned with the man in the oval office as a security concern than with some info in the report. 

I find it hard to believe that members on some of these committees don't have high enough security clearance, in fact I highly doubt they don't. If Don Jr or Kushner can get clearance than members of Congress sure as hell should. 

Those two got theirs by executive order or something. The actual process is let’s say time consuming. I would imagine there is some expedited process though. 

The actual members likely have high enough clearances but I imagine they leave a lot of the grunt work to staffers. As I think about it more the members likely want the report downgraded so their underlings can read it, share it with attorneys and build a case. 

You should be concerned about unredacting and potentially declassifying/downgrading some of the info concerning Russia. That’s just my opinion though. I would be willing to bet some of that information is well beyond the need to know of staffers but within the scope of the elected members of the committee. 

Edited by SABRES 0311

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30 minutes ago, SABRES 0311 said:

Those two got theirs by executive order or something. The actual process is let’s say time consuming. I would imagine there is some expedited process though. 

The actual members likely have high enough clearances but I imagine they leave a lot of the grunt work to staffers. As I think about it more the members likely want the report downgraded so their underlings can read it, share it with attorneys and build a case. 

You should be concerned about unredacting and potentially declassifying/downgrading some of the info concerning Russia. That’s just my opinion though. I would be willing to bet some of that information is well beyond the need to know of staffers but within the scope of the elected members of the committee. 

I think I would be more concerned with that Russia part if the President wasn't having private meetings with no US personnel with Putin. Trump isn't smart, I don't trust him to know what is and what is not important information. 

You are right though, some of that info is beyond need to know. Of course we are not the United States of America anymore, we are the United States of Republicans or Democrats apparently. When the Roman Republic ended, one of the contributing factors was that it was better to do nothing or sabotage your political rival than it was to help the State. Common sense laws were rejected depending on who proposed them simply because. We are rapidly approaching that. 

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Also thank you to Taro and Sabres0311, you are talking about stuff from a different viewpoint and that is good to hear. I have looked into some of what you are saying and learned a great deal more about what is going on as a result. 

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4 hours ago, Taro T said:

You say you "don't know how any American could argue against full transparency in this case" knowing full well that it is illegal for the FULL report to be released.  You also are fine with going directly to contempt charges rather than attempting to negotiate a solution (the way adults would) because of THE MEDIA COVERAGE of the report which requires the committee to play hard ball.  Considering you also avoided responding to my questions, there doesn't seem much point in further attempting to discuss this with you.

Considering you essentially accused me of being a liar in your 1st reply to one of my posts "leading with a blatent mistruth" and haven't responded to my questions with your next post, and there is much to get done before a client heads out of town today, pretty sure I am done here.  Enjoy your weekend, hopefully you get better weather than we have here.

What questions of yours did I not respond to? I looked back on your post and I believe I responded to all occurrences of question marks, which were located in the second paragraph. I found that punctuation quite helpful to identify questions posed. Please do indicate which of your statements were intended as questions and I'll be happy to discuss.

I didn't mean to call you a lier, but I do think you presented incorrect information. I think the difference between the two is in the intent to mislead. You underrepresented the amount of the report that was redacted (where did you get your numbers?) and in my opinion (as this is less clear), underplayed how much of the GJ material can legally be released. These are important details, and there is a lot of misinformation spreading about both online, which is why I felt it was important to clarify.

Sabres0311, thanks for the rundown on classification and redactions.  

Saying 'full transparency' was a mistake, and I should have used more precise language to indicate that I meant all information that can be released, is released. I was thinking of some GJ and privacy-related redactions, and understand some information will remain confidential. I was also thinking of the very misleading rollout of the report (as per Mueller's opinion) which was an attempt at undermining transparency. My apologies on the poor phrasing while posting in a hurry.

In defense of my hardball comment: I do think such a strategy is necessary for this administration because of their constant resistance to oversight. Also, like it or not (I don't), a lot of this is and will be played out in the media. Impeachment proceedings are largely a political process, which is why the administration sought to distort the narrative on the report in the media as much as possible with Barr's deeply misleading initial summary (again, last part is per Mueller's opinion).

I'm curious how some posters  here would respond to the following questions:

What do you think of this administration resisting congressional oversight at almost every turn? Do you think there is sufficient evidence of conflicts of interest to make this oversight important?

Do you think Trump's constant denial of Russia's role in the 2016 election, thereby going against the US intelligence community, has helped or hurt secure America's electoral process for the 2020 election and beyond? 

 

 

 

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Here is what I think happened.

In an effort to curry favor with Trump some campaign members did meet with Russian personalities to acquire information. HRC campaign did the same but through Perkins Coi, Fusion GPS and eventually through Steele. That’s another conversation.

Trump has a habit of surrounding himself with dumb people; papadopolous, Bannon, sons. Those individuals specifically require validation for their personalities. Papadopolous in particular tried to build himself as an “international man of mystery” and learned the hard way how that game is played.

IMO there may have been attempted but failed collusion of staff members but not at the direction or outright knowledge of Trump himself. Essentially dumb people trying to do things to feed their ego and curry favor with Trump. 

Russia did use social media to effect the election. I do not think this was done in concert with the campaign. Not because the campaign turned it down but because it was unnecessary and would’ve jeopardized the activity. I do question the effectiveness of their activities. Attempted interference and actually swaying the election are two different things. If their social media activities did sway the election I’ll hang my head at the idea we rely that heavily on Facebook to decide who we vote for.

Then again what do I know. 

 

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Commander in orange is a megalomaniac.

To assume he had no knowledge of something going on within his campaign is a bad default position to hold.

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Do you think Papadopoulos, who told an Australian diplomat in May 2016 that Russia had the hacked emails,  also didn't tell his boss about the emails? Seems hard to believe, especially since Trump had been openly attempting to curry favor in Russia since the 1990's. Drnk's point about Trump's megalomania is a good one, as well as his long documented history of micro management.

Do you consider sharing polling data with Russia (via Manafort), and sharing/promoting Russian troll's social media posts (via JR and others), "not in concert"? Sure seems like a collaborative effort to me, especially since the the campaign obviously knew about the hacked emails in advance.

The campaign knew about the hacked emails, provided advice to Russia on what regions to target, and openly shared the Russian troll's posts, all while rewriting the GOP policy on Russia and secretly negotiating a huge real estate deal in russia while lying to the American people about it.  Nothing about this seems suspicious to you? If that doesn't look bad enough, don't forget the Mueller report also noted that extensive evidence was destroyed and multiple campaign members got caught lying to the FBI, which hindered the investigation (eg. Mifsud was able to avoid questioning because of Papadopoulos' lies, setting back the investigation (as per Papadopoulos' sentencing memo)).

I think the missing element here, which I'm surprised wasn't included in the Mueller report, is the role of Cambridge analytica. It would be interesting to see the correspondence of how social media posts were targeted between Russian troll's farms and the campaign's communications firm. 

Sabre, I share your concern about people getting their news from paid Facebook ads, but that is unfortunately the world we seem to live in at the moment.

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23 hours ago, atoq said:

Do you think Papadopoulos, who told an Australian diplomat in May 2016 that Russia had the hacked emails,  also didn't tell his boss about the emails? Seems hard to believe, especially since Trump had been openly attempting to curry favor in Russia since the 1990's. Drnk's point about Trump's megalomania is a good one, as well as his long documented history of micro management.

Do you consider sharing polling data with Russia (via Manafort), and sharing/promoting Russian troll's social media posts (via JR and others), "not in concert"? Sure seems like a collaborative effort to me, especially since the the campaign obviously knew about the hacked emails in advance.

The campaign knew about the hacked emails, provided advice to Russia on what regions to target, and openly shared the Russian troll's posts, all while rewriting the GOP policy on Russia and secretly negotiating a huge real estate deal in russia while lying to the American people about it.  Nothing about this seems suspicious to you? If that doesn't look bad enough, don't forget the Mueller report also noted that extensive evidence was destroyed and multiple campaign members got caught lying to the FBI, which hindered the investigation (eg. Mifsud was able to avoid questioning because of Papadopoulos' lies, setting back the investigation (as per Papadopoulos' sentencing memo)).

I think the missing element here, which I'm surprised wasn't included in the Mueller report, is the role of Cambridge analytica. It would be interesting to see the correspondence of how social media posts were targeted between Russian troll's farms and the campaign's communications firm. 

Sabre, I share your concern about people getting their news from paid Facebook ads, but that is unfortunately the world we seem to live in at the moment.

We get what we deserve. An easily manipulated populace gets masters, not representatives.

Keep in mind this is my theory and I am not trying to convince anyone. I guess mostly it concerns the motivations. If I had to guess this will be another one of those things we debate for decades like JFK, Roswell and how to fix the Sabres.

Edit: Personally I am more concerned about what Russia has on campaign members than I am about what they have on Trump. Specifically Don Jr had that meeting. Now we see China playing hardball and KJU meeting Putin. Just a theory but they may be feeling more confident if Russia has shared their knowledge. Same with recent Iranian actions and Maduro holding out. All of these actors are allies with Russia. 

This is only a theory as I do not know for sure what is true. Mueller was erroneously called an investigation but in reality was an inquiry. An inquiry only determines if there is enough evidence to warrant an investigation into the subject. I believe the reason he indicted other persons is because their charges were outside of his mandate therefore no impropriety on Mueller’s part. Hence why Don Jr was not indicted. 

Now the Dems have to choose their route. Try to win 2020 through better policies or win by destroying Trumps support. So far I think they are setting themselves up for failure by going after Trump the person instead of developing more appealing policies for the voters. 

I would like to see what percentage of voters changed their vote due to Russian troll farms. According to the numbers HRC won the popular vote despite troll farming.

Edited by SABRES 0311

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17 hours ago, 5th line wingnutt said:

I have not read this, but can you provide some summary or position on why you posted it?  (granted the title has an obvious statement in it).  I'm heading out the door, but I will look at it later.  It just helps if there is more than a link.

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7 minutes ago, LTS said:

I have not read this, but can you provide some summary or position on why you posted it?  (granted the title has an obvious statement in it).  I'm heading out the door, but I will look at it later.  It just helps if there is more than a link.

Skimming through it the report talks about unemployment dropping. Goes into how non supervisory income is on the rise. Essentially we are to the point where employers can raise wages to attract more people to fill increased openings. This includes positions held by people at the lower levels who traditionally don’t make as much as supervisors. Only skimmed through it though. 

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19 hours ago, SABRES 0311 said:

Skimming through it the report talks about unemployment dropping. Goes into how non supervisory income is on the rise. Essentially we are to the point where employers can raise wages to attract more people to fill increased openings. This includes positions held by people at the lower levels who traditionally don’t make as much as supervisors. Only skimmed through it though. 

Just read it. Thanks for the summary too.  It helps.

I had to read about "FEE" as I have no background on the group providing the report.  Seems like good news overall.  The metrics on unemployment have certainly looked good without a doubt.

Perhaps I have to read again because I don't recall them discussing how prices for goods have been rising as well though.  Earning more money because you have to spend more money isn't really all that great of an improvement.  However, it's still better than not earning more and still having to spend more. 🙂

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4 hours ago, 5th line wingnutt said:

So if you track the QAnon phenomenon then quite possibly. Outside of that this is a necessary oversight action. FISA warrants are supposed to rely on vetted information. As it seems the Steel Dossier provided a foundation we need to look at the veracity of that information and if it was vetted prior to FISA application signatures. This goes into how the information was presented to the FISA Court. Essentially if it was not vetted but presented as though it was there is a problem.

The origins of the dossier stem from opposition research on behalf of the HRC campaign. From what I understand they paid Fusion GPS, possibly through Perkins Coi. GPS then went to Steel who is a former, foreign intelligence personality. If Steel was somehow still tied to a foreign intelligence agency at the time of payments then HRC essentially used a foreign intelligence service to provide information on a U.S. citizen.

Apparently the dossier was provided to the FBI from elements within the U.S. Government. If so, it should have stayed within official channels during the conduct of investigation. However that did not happen, hence leaking. Fun Fact, Bruce Ohr who is a member of the DOJ is married to Nellie Ohr who is/was employed by Fusion GPS. Conflict of interest?

There is smoke so now we will see if there is fire. If the was any misconduct in the above it is pretty significant.

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5 hours ago, SABRES 0311 said:

So if you track the QAnon phenomenon then quite possibly. Outside of that this is a necessary oversight action. FISA warrants are supposed to rely on vetted information. As it seems the Steel Dossier provided a foundation we need to look at the veracity of that information and if it was vetted prior to FISA application signatures. This goes into how the information was presented to the FISA Court. Essentially if it was not vetted but presented as though it was there is a problem.

The origins of the dossier stem from opposition research on behalf of the HRC campaign. From what I understand they paid Fusion GPS, possibly through Perkins Coi. GPS then went to Steel who is a former, foreign intelligence personality. If Steel was somehow still tied to a foreign intelligence agency at the time of payments then HRC essentially used a foreign intelligence service to provide information on a U.S. citizen.

Apparently the dossier was provided to the FBI from elements within the U.S. Government. If so, it should have stayed within official channels during the conduct of investigation. However that did not happen, hence leaking. Fun Fact, Bruce Ohr who is a member of the DOJ is married to Nellie Ohr who is/was employed by Fusion GPS. Conflict of interest?

There is smoke so now we will see if there is fire. If the was any misconduct in the above it is pretty significant.

You are only talking about part of the story. You completely left out the Australia connection. 

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/30/us/politics/how-fbi-russia-investigation-began-george-papadopoulos.html 

Quote

It was not, as Mr. Trump and other politicians have alleged, a dossier compiled by a former British spy hired by a rival campaign. Instead, it was firsthand information from one of America’s closest intelligence allies.

Interviews and previously undisclosed documents show that Mr. Papadopoulos played a critical role in this drama and reveal a Russian operation that was more aggressive and widespread than previously known. They add to an emerging portrait, gradually filled in over the past year in revelations by federal investigators, journalists and lawmakers, of Russians with government contacts trying to establish secret channels at various levels of the Trump campaign.

 

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