The FISA Court was warned multiple times over the past few years about abuse and criminal actions by the Obama Administration. These warnings were ignored until the latest actions after the DOJ’s devastating FISA Abuse report regarding the Carter Page FISA warrants. What took so long?
After the FISA report the FISA Court finally took some action to address the rampant abuse within the FBI and DOJ that contaminated the Court. Jeff Dunetz reported at the Lidblog the following:
After the Horowitz report was issued, Judge Collyer, head of the FISA Court, ripped the FBI for the falsehoods used on applications to wiretap former Trump campaign aide Carter Page. The judge ordered the agency to go through their FISA warrants to find any other abnormalities and recommend solutions to prevent falsehoods from ever happening again, all by January 10th. But is Judge Collyer and the FISA court just as culpable as the FBI? The court was provided multiple warnings since 2016 that the warrant application process, especially in the case of Carter Page.
Dunetz reminded readers that the first warning the FISA Court had was in October of 2016 shortly before the 2016 election:
On October 24, 2016, NSA Director Admiral Mike Rogers told Judge Collyer of the FISA court that there were significant issues with the way the NSA was complying with its minimization procedures. This was three days after Judge Collyer approved the FISA warrant to spy on Carter Page.
Admiral Rogers ordered an audit of the FISA process and the results were shared with the FISA Court in October 2016 with the report was released with multiple redactions in April 2017. We reported in April of 2018 that the stunning April 2017 report covered results of an investigation or audit into FISA searches made by Obama’s NSA, FBI and DOJ during Obama’s time in office.
The report stated that James Clapper’s NSA had an institutional “lack of candor”. Also, the FISA Court Ruling showed widespread abuse of the FISA mandate. According to the report, Obama’s FBI, NSA and DOJ performed searches on Americans that were against their 4th Amendment rights. This went on for years. One paragraph in the report states that 85% of the Section 704 and 705(b) FISA searches made during the time of the audit (a few months in 2015) were non-compliant with applicable laws and therefore criminal.
For some reason this report led to little action from the FISA Court. According to Dunetz, in 2017, Landmark Legal Foundation, a Law Firm that has Mark Levin as Chairman tried to bring the issue to the Court. Then in 2018 Rep. Mark Meadows sent a letter to the Court asking Judge Collyer to investigate FISA abuses.
Dunetz then reported that Rep. Devon Nunez wrote to the FISA Court twice:
Kimberly Strassel of the WSJ reported that twice in 2018, Rep Devin Nunes sent a letter to Judge Collyer about the Carter Page warrant. The first time (Feb.), he asked the actual court hearings about the application for the warrant. Four months later, Nunes sent her another letter. This letter told the Judge that he uncovered evidence that the DOJ may have provided bogus information to the court regarding the Carter Page warrant application. Judge Collyer responded to each letter by blowing Nunes off.
Dunetz noted that Judicial Watch later determined what Collyer omitted from her response to Rep. Nunez, that there was no hearing of the Carter Page FISA application.
To wrap up his post, Dunetz stated:
The truth is that Judge Collyer and the FISA court is just as culpable for putting the U.S. through the Russiagate nightmare as the FBI. Judge Collyer allowed Carter Page to go through three years of personal hell, despite the fact he was an honest public servant. Was she biased, lazy, or just protecting her turf? In the end, it doesn’t matter. Her job was to protect the freedom of Americans–she failed.
Judge Collyer resigned her position as presiding judge on the FISA court as of Dec. She will remain as a Judge on the court until her term ends in March 2020. According to reports, she’s dropping the Presiding Judge responsibilities because of health reasons. But—well—you decide.
Currently only four of the eleven judges on the FISA Court were Trump picks. The remaining seven members, including Collyer, were all Obama picks.