|Senator Richard Burr (R-NC)|
To stir up his knuckle dragging base and in apparent preparation for possible impeachment, Donald Trump has been working overtime building the myth that the FBI placed a spy withing his campaign and/or worked to entrap him or his sleazy and possibly traitorous minions. Far too many congressional Republicans have kissed Der Trumpenführer's ring and have rebroadcast the lies, most notably Devin Nunes who seemingly takes orders from Vladimir Putin himself. Now Senator Richard Burr (R-NC), Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, and House Speaker Paul Ryan - although very belatedly in the case of Ryan - have challenged Trump's untrue fabrications (another name for lies) and have stated that the FBI acted appropriately contrary to Trump's claims. How Trump and his insane/morally bankrupt apologists will try to frame these simply statements of the truth as the result of machinations and manipulation on the part of Democrats remains to be seen. The only certainty is that Trump's base will continue to swallow his lies like pigs at a trough. A piece at CNN looks at Burr and Ryan's break with the Trump lie machine. Here are highlights:
House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Intelligence Chairman Richard Burr, both Republicans, broke with President Donald Trump on Wednesday over allegations spies infiltrated his 2016 campaign, saying they agree with GOP Rep. Trey Gowdy that the FBI did "exactly" what it should have done over its handling of a confidential source.
The declarations by the leading Republicans are the latest indications that Trump lacks any evidence to back up his claims of a major political scandal he calls "spygate" -- since those lawmakers were among a select group briefed on the classified intelligence at issue. The only Republican briefed on the intelligence who has yet to break from Trump is Rep. Devin Nunes, the House Intelligence chairman who has demanded more documents as part of his investigation.
"I think that Trey Gowdy's description of the process was correct," Burr said
Officials briefed Ryan, Gowdy and other congressional leaders last month on the FBI's use of a confidential source that interacted with Trump's campaign two years ago as the Department of Justice investigated Russian meddling.
The briefings came after House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes demanded more information about the source -- a push that has prompted Trump to publicly speculate whether the FBI infiltrated his campaign. Nunes declined to comment Wednesday.
Gowdy, chairman of the House Oversight Committee who is retiring at the end of his congressional term, concluded last week after attending a classified briefing that the FBI acted appropriately in the probe.
"I am even more convinced that the FBI did exactly what my fellow citizens would want them to do when they got the information they got, and that it has nothing to do with Donald Trump," Gowdy said in an interview on Fox News. . . . I have seen no evidence to the contrary of, of the initial assessment that Chairman Gowdy has made," he [Ryan] said.
Ryan was also asked whether he believes the President is able to pardon himself, after Trump tweeted Monday that he has the "absolute right" to do so, though he added he's done nothing wrong as special counsel Robert Mueller continues his investigation.
"I don't know the technical answer to that question, but I think obviously the answer is he shouldn't," Ryan said. "No one is above the law."