Brooke Singman

‘Extraordinary’ Strzok removal shows FBI agents in crosshairs from IG probe

Peter Strzok’s abrupt removal from his FBI office this week signaled that the Justice Department inspector general’s work already is leading to consequences for bureau officials ensnared in various probes — with potentially more repercussions to come.  Strzok, who worked on both the Clinton email and Russia probes, was escorted from the FBI on Tuesday, following a referral for further investigation from DOJ IG Michael Horowitz. The watchdog, as part of his Clinton case review, found that Strzok and four other FBI employees sent “hostile” anti-Trump messages on bureau devices. The FBI’s Office of Professional Responsibility is expected to further investigate the findings against the five FBI employees. “A referral certainly is very serious and they will investigate the accusatio...

Comey hits back at Clinton, won’t apologize to her over email probe

James Comey fired back this week at Hillary Clinton after the former secretary of state cited the Justice Department inspector general report on her email case to challenge the premise of the investigation itself.  Clinton did so in a terse, snarky tweet following the release of the nearly 600-page report, which accused the former FBI director of defying the chain of command during the email probe. It also said he, too, used a personal email account for some government business.  “But my emails,” Clinton tweeted, in response to a reporter tweet about Comey’s use of a “gmail” account — a slap at the outrage over her private email server and the FBI probe itself.  But during an interview in Berlin this week, Comey was asked whether he would apologize to Clinton — and refused. He ...

IG confirms he is reviewing whether Strzok’s anti-Trump bias impacted launch of Russia probe

Horowitz reviewing if Strzok’s bias affected Russia probe Inspector general Michael Horowitz testifies before joint hearing of the House Judiciary and Oversight Committees on whether anti-Trump FBI agent Peter Strzok’s political bias affected the initiation of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation. Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz confirmed Tuesday that he is investigating whether FBI official Peter Strzok’s anti-Trump bias factored into the launch of the bureau’s Russia probe. During a joint hearing before the House Oversight and Judiciary committees, Horowitz testified that his office was reviewing Strzok’s anti-Trump text messages as part of a separate probe related to the Russia investigation.  “It clearly shows a biased state of mind,” H...

IG confirms Comey under investigation over memo handling

Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz confirmed publicly Monday that his office is investigating James Comey for his handling of classified information as part of memos he shared documenting discussions with President Trump. The inspector general’s comments confirmed reports dating back to April that the ex-FBI director was facing scrutiny, amid revelations that at least two of the memos he shared with his friend, Columbia University Professor Daniel Richman, contained information now deemed classified. The confirmation came during Monday’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, where Horowitz and FBI Director Christopher Wray testified on the findings in the IG’s report on the handling of the Hillary Clinton email probe.  “We received a referral on that from the FBI,” H...

Sessions warns IG report on Clinton email case could lead to more firings

Attorney General Jeff Sessions, on the eve of the release of a long-awaited watchdog report on the Hillary Clinton email case, pointedly warned that the findings could lead to more firings.  The Justice Department inspector general report reviewing the FBI and DOJ’s handling of that case is slated to drop Thursday.  In an exclusive interview with The Hill’s new web show “Rising” on Wednesday, Sessions said the option of “termination” is on the table for those accused of serious wrongdoing. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said he was open to firing more officials in connection with Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s report.  (AP) “If anyone else shows up in this report to have done something that requires termination we will do so,” Sessions told The Hill.  It’s unclear w...

Stormy Daniels’ legal fund could be targeted in case against attorney Avenatti

Adult film star Stormy Daniels could become entangled in the legal controversies surrounding her attorney Michael Avenatti, as a lawyer seeks millions in legal fees from his firm — potentially including money raised for Daniels’ case.  Last month, a federal bankruptcy court ordered Eagan Avenatti to pay $10 million to attorney Jason Frank, who used to work at the firm and claimed the company stiffed him on the first installment of a $4.85 million settlement.  The Los Angeles Times reported that Frank has since asked a bankruptcy judge to give him access to all legal fees (up to $10 million) the firm could collect from clients in dozens of cases, including Daniels’ bid to nix a nondisclosure agreement concerning an alleged sexual encounter with President Trump.  That repor...

Supreme Court gives green light to Ohio’s voting roll purge

The Supreme Court ruled Monday that Ohio is allowed to purge eligible voters from the state’s registration records if they have not cast ballots in a while. In a 5-4 ruling issued by Justice Samuel Alito, the high court ruled that Ohio’s law to trigger the removal of inactive voters from the state’s registry can be enforced. State officials argued that the process used by Ohio for more than 20 years is constitutional and legal, and meant to ensure election security.  Civil liberties groups challenged the state’s program for removing thousands of people from voter rolls based on their failure to vote in recent elections, claiming it violated the National Voter Registration Act. But Alito said that Ohio is complying with the National Voter Registration Act of 1993. At least six other states ...

Trump fires back over nixed Eagles visit: ‘No escaping to Locker Rooms!’

President Trump fired back Tuesday amid the Philadelphia furor over his decision to disinvite the Eagles from a White House event, touting a patriotic ceremony being held instead and declaring: “No escaping to Locker Rooms!” Trump triggered a backlash from the City of Brotherly Love after he rescinded his invitation for the Super Bowl champions amid the controversy over national anthem protests.  The White House is instead hosting a “Celebration of America” event on Tuesday.  “We will proudly be playing the National Anthem and other wonderful music celebrating our Country today at 3 P.M., The White House, with the United States Marine Band and the United States Army Chorus. Honoring America! NFL, no escaping to Locker Rooms!” Trump tweeted early Tuesday. The White House decisio...

Pentagon expected to take over background checks for government employee security clearances

The Pentagon is expected to take over background-checkinvestigations for federal government employees, tightening controls and tackling a backlog of workers awaiting security clearances. Pentagon officials said that over the next three years, theDefense Department will take responsibility for all background investigations involving its military and civilian employees and contractors. An official said this week that the White House is also expected to give the Pentagon authorityto conduct security reviews for nearly all government agencies as well. U.S. officials said the move comes after revelations that aNavy contractor who gunned down a dozen people at Washington’s Navy Yard in2013 maintained his security clearance despite concerns about his mental health, and an arrest investigators nev...

Trump swayed NFL owners on anthem rules, Kaepernick case depositions reveal

President Trump’s public and personal pressure on NFL owners reportedly played a big role in the league’s decision to change its National Anthem rules amid controversial player protests.  The Wall Street Journal obtained depositions from NFL owners, including Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, as part of a grievance case filed by former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.  According to Jones’ deposition, reviewed by the Journal, the president personally told him, “You can’t win this one.” “This is a very winning, strong issue for me,” Trump reportedly said in a call with Jones. “Tell everybody, you can’t win this one. This one lifts me.” Kaepernick was the first NFL player to protest police violence and racial injustice by refusing to stand for the National Anthem ...

Trump welcomes ‘productive’ statement from North Korea, says Dems ‘rooting against’ talks

President Trump kept the diplomacy door open with North Korea on Friday, welcoming the regime’s latest “productive” statement and saying the two sides are still talking following the administration’s decision to cancel a planned summit with Kim Jong Un.  Trump nixed the summit, which was slated for June 12 in Singapore, following threats from North Korea. But hours after the U.S. pulled out of the meeting, North Korea issued a statement suggesting the regime was open to talks. “Very good news to receive the warm and productive statement from North Korea. We will soon see where it will lead, hopefully to long and enduring prosperity and peace. Only time (and talent) will tell!” Trump tweeted on Friday morning.  He also told reporters that “we’re talking to them now,” adding, “It could...

White House pulls out of summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un

President Trump on Thursday canceled the highly anticipated summit with North Korea that had been set for next month, calling the talks “inappropriate” following the “hostility” displayed in the latest comments from dictator Kim Jong Un. The move to pull out of the summit, slated to take place in Singapore on June 12, came after threats from Kim to call off the talks. In a letter to Kim on Thursday, Trump said the world, and North Korea, had lost a “great opportunity for lasting peace and great prosperity.”  “Based on the tremendous anger and open hostility displayed in your most recent statement, I feel it is inappropriate, at this time, to have this long-planned meeting,” Trump wrote in a letter to Kim on Thursday. “Therefore, please let this letter serve to represent that th...