May 10, 2017 07:00 am Wednesday’s D3 Daily Action

DEMAND THAT TIPTON, GARDNER AND BENNET (or your congressman) SUPPORT AN INDEPENDENT INVESTIGATION INTO RUSSIAN INTERFERENCE IN THE 2016 U.S. ELECTION

(Today’s D3 Daily Action is a biggie… but this is a big deal that could have lasting implications for the Trump’s Administration. Treason is NOT a bi-partisan issue. Please take a little extra time this morning to get through it all!)

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“Future generations may mark today as one of the truly dark days in American history, a history that may soon take an even more ominous turn.

President Trump’s sudden firing of FBI Director James Comey is a matter that should deeply concern every American, regardless of party, partisan politics or ideological leanings…

We need a special prosecutor. We need an independent investigation. There is, obviously, much we don’t know about what has just happened, why it happened and why now. Just as obviously there is much more, so much more that we need know. We need to damn the lies and expose the truth.”
— Dan Rather, May 9, 2017

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Congress has the power to create a special commission to conduct an investigation that is truly independent, bipartisan, and unbiased. It should do so immediately. PLEASE CALL Representative Scott Tipton, Senator Cory Gardner and Senator Michael Bennet to demand that Congress support an independent investigation into Russian Interference with the 2016 Election.

Yesterday, Trump dismissed FBI Director Comey who is tasked with investigating Russian interference in last year’s presidential elections. Trump cited Comey’s handling of his investigation into Secretary Clinton’s e-mail during the 2016 election and Comey’s mishandling of testimony before Congress on that topic. But of course, Trump’s timing is suspect. And now, after firing Comey, Trump will appoint a new FBI Director to look into his Administration’s connections with Russia.

Earlier this week, the American public also learned that Trump sat on his hands for 18 days after his White House Counsel learned that the National Security Advisor had lied to senior officials in the Trump Administration and was vulnerable to blackmail by Russia. Donald Trump’s inaction for so long raises alarming questions the American public deserves to have answered.

At this point, the connections between the Trump team and Russia create a tangled web of overlapping interests that are difficult to unpack or even to visualize but the graphic above starts to unravel Trump’s ties to Russia.

The American people deserve the full story behind Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election. But the public cannot trust that Republican MoCs with close ties to Trump and his campaign will investigate the facts thoroughly and impartially. Republicans who were originally supposed to be leading investigations into Russia have:

Demonstrated a lack of good judgment;
Operated with partisan biases;
Shown favoritism towards the White House;
Conspired with White House staff;
Put hearings into Russia on hold without adequate explanation;
Triggered personal investigations by the House Committee on Ethics; and
Quit the investigation under intense public pressure.

Nor can the American people trust Trump officials, who themselves may also be subjects of the investigation, to impartially scrutinize the situation. Others advising the White House on ongoing relations with Russia have:

Lied under oath about meeting with Russian officials during the campaign;
Blocked key officials from testifying;
Failed to disclose payments from Russian sources;
Resigned from the White House; and
Requested immunity.
first meeting on Trump’s schedule this morning: Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov at the White House

CONGRESSIONAL COMMITTEES CANNOT BE TRUSTED

For months now, Trump officials and Republican MoCs in both the House and Senate have wasted the American people’s time with their mishandling of the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election.

Even after hearing damning testimony, Senate Republicans have failed to take threats to our national security seriously. In testimony to the Senate Subcommittee on Crimes and Terrorism, former Attorney General Sally Yates summed up what the Michael Flynn scandal is all about: “To state the obvious, you don’t want your national security advisor compromised with the Russians.” During the same hearing, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper revealed that multiple European allies passed intelligence to the U.S. on Trump campaign contacts with Russian intelligence agents in 2016. Clapper dismissed that this was about leaks: “The transcendent issue here is the Russian interference in our election process.” However, the Republican Senators present failed to probe into the White House’s shielding of Flynn, or the risks posed to U.S. national security.

The House has had its own problems investigating the Trump Administration’s ties to Russia. Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA), chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and a former member of the Trump transition team violated established protocols and broke congressional norms. He was lambasted by Democrats and Republicans alike for his unusual behavior. Finally, after announcement by the Ethics Committee that Nunes “may have made unauthorized disclosures of classified information,” Nunes temporarily recused himself from the the investigation into Russia. And now the House Committee on Ethics is conducting its own investigation—into the questionable actions of Rep. Nunes.

Enough is enough. The American people deserve better.

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CONGRESS SHOULD APPOINT A SPECIAL COMMISSION TO INVESTIGATE RUSSIAN INTERFERENCE IN THE 2016 ELECTION

Congress has the power to create a special commission to conduct an investigation that is truly independent, bipartisan, and unbiased. It should do so immediately.

Precedent exists for this type of congressional action. In the aftermath of 9/11, Congress and President George W. Bush set up a special commission to investigate the attacks. Moreover, MoCs of both parties support an independent investigation, including Senator John McCain (R-AZ).

MoCs have introduced bills in the House and Senate that propose setting up such a commission to examine Russian influence in the 2016 election. Rep. Eric Swalwell’s bill, H.R. 356, the Protecting Our Democracy Act, already has bipartisan support, including co-sponsors from the entire Democratic caucus. Senator Ben Cardin’s bill, S.27, has 24 Democratic co-sponsors. Both bills would establish a commission of independent experts to examine the facts regarding Russia and the 2016 election.

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Here are some articles to read regarding the firing of James Comey:

NY TIMES: F.B.I. Director James Comey Is Fired by Trump

LA TIMES: Absolutely nothing about James Comey’s firing passes the smell test

WASHINGTON POST: After Trump fired Comey, White House staff scrambled to explain why

NY TIMES: In Trump’s Firing of James Comey, Echoes of Watergate

And here are some petitions to sign:

Representative Jerry Nadler’s Petition to Investigate President Trump

Call Fired FBI Director James Comey to testify on Russia’s connections to Trump.

Christine Pelosi’s Petition: Independent Bipartisan Commission to Investigate Russian Interference in Election

Credo: Tell Congress: Investigate Trump’s ties to Russia

People For the American Way: Appoint a special counsel to investigate Trump and Russia NOW!

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