With House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes in hot water over his blatantly partisan effort to validate Donald Trump’s wiretap lie and deflect from the mounting evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, Fox News reporter James Rosen seems to have stepped in as the front man.
The top story on FoxNews.com as I began to write this (approximately 12:08 AM ET) was a headline blaring, “POSSIBLE 'SMOKING GUN.' Intel may have evidence Obama spied on Trump team, source says.”
Got that? “Possible smoking gun.” It reminds me of Judge Andrew Napolitano’s “bombshell” when he accused British spies of working on behalf of Obama to spy on Trump: “If then-Mr. Donald Trump, the president-elect, was surveilled as he says he was, … it was done by a foreign intelligence entity,” and “Sources have told me that the British foreign surveillance service, the Government Communications Headquarters, known as GCHQ, most likely provided Obama with transcripts of Trump’s calls.” You probably recall how that worked out.
Nevertheless, it appears to be Wiretap Groundhog Day for Fox. From Rosen’s FoxNews.com article, similarly titled, "Potential 'smoking gun' showing Obama administration spied on Trump team, source says," with my emphases added:
Republican congressional investigators expect a potential “smoking gun” establishing that the Obama administration spied on the Trump transition team, and possibly the president-elect himself, will be produced to the House Intelligence Committee this week, a source told Fox News.
Classified intelligence showing incidental collection of Trump team communications, purportedly seen by committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., and described by him in vague terms at a bombshell Wednesday afternoon news conference, came from multiple sources, Capitol Hill sources told Fox News. The intelligence corroborated information about surveillance of the Trump team that was known to Nunes, sources said, even before President Trump accused his predecessor of having wiretapped him in a series of now-infamous tweets posted on March 4.
The intelligence is said to leave no doubt the Obama administration, in its closing days, was using the cover of legitimate surveillance on foreign targets to spy on President-elect Trump, according to sources.
In other words, this is essentially the same information Nunes had, which was, basically, a nothingburger. As Media Matters explained, “Nunes’ report -- that Trump aides were caught in “incidental collection” while surveilling other targets - was already widely suspected, and Nunes himself admitted it does not prove Trump’s false claim is correct.”
Wednesday, Fox’s own John Roberts suggested Nunes’ source or sources came from the White House. Thursday, Nunes would not deny that.
So where do you think Rosen’s “potential smoking gun” source came from? Yeah, me too.
By the way, when I searched the FoxNews.com home page as I started to write this post, about an hour ago, I searched the word “Russia.” Funny, there’s nothing there at all about the growing evidence of Trump treason.
Watch Fox’s chief intelligence correspondent, Catherine Herridge report on Nunes’ “obligation to protect” his source. And while she was at it, Herridge did her part for Trump’s Russia Deflection Team by saying “a Congressional staffer” told her that a “hypothesis under consideration” is “reverse targeting, an illegal practice where a government targets its citizens under the guise of surveiling a person overseas.” Gee, I wonder which member that staffer might work for.
Herridge’s report is from the March 23, 2017 Special Report.
Correction: This post originally misspelled Rep Nunes' name.
Fox News [upon reading Trump’s tweet storm]: A high ranking source [read Trump himself] confirms Trump was wiretapped.
On a serious note, whenever I see Catherine Herridge’s name associated with a piece I know it’s bulls—t propaganda. Examples in the past include multiple stories whitewashing GITMO by only parroting 100% Dubya’s DoD, endless #Benghazi! stories which were widely debunked, and her feeding Bret Baier the infamous Giuliani October surprise lie destroying Hillary.
We all know how sincere Republicans are in their moral crusade over intelligence leaks observing Fox News’ and Trump’s glee over spreading Nunes’ intelligence leaks. Even as Nunes’ official stance was contrition in the form of an apology to his fellow committee members he was on Hannity last night crying it was his “duty” [to the party?] to illegally leak intelligence to Trump.
And the nature of Nunes’ “bombshell”? Vague mutterings that can be summed up as Obama didn’t intentionally wiretap Trump. Not that these facts prevented our Liar-in-Chief from claiming vindication.