On the Warpath: Emmet Flood’s Letter Signals a New Phase
RUSH: Ladies and gentlemen, I think it is safe to say that the New York Times story yesterday that we were the first to highlight was CYA. They were trying to get out in front of things and acknowledge the FBI had a reason to spy on Trump. But they have failed because the universal conclusion across the spectrum is the FBI was spying on the Trump campaign. That’s what that story essentially acknowledges now.
JOHNNY DONOVAN: And now, from sunny south Florida, it’s Open Line Friday!
RUSH: Right on. Right on. I remember all of these stories, Barack Obama: there’s no spying on Americans. There’s no wiretapping of Donald Trump, said James Comey. All of that’s now out the window. Of course, we knew they were spying because they got the FISA warrant on Carter Page.
That New York Times story yesterday, they were spying on Papadopoulos, they were trying to entrap Papadopoulos. And there are things in motion that you may not know about. And I’m gonna explain them to you on Open Line Friday today as the program unfolds. Great to have you. Well, I’ll just give you a head up.
I think, based on Trump’s interview last night with Catherine Herridge on Fox News, that New York Times story yesterday admitting that they’re spying on Papadopoulos and trying to entrap Papadopoulos, and Emmet Flood, Trump’s lawyer, has sent a four-page letter to William Barr, and I think it means that they are on the warpath now.
I think they waited ’til Mueller finished, they waited for all of the dust to settle, and I think they are on the warpath, and I think Nadler knows it and I think Pelosi knows it. And I think the Drive-By Media knows it, and I think the rats are scurrying, trying to get out in front of this, as we explained in great detail yesterday.
RUSH: Now, ladies and gentlemen, I mentioned at the top of the program that I think that the White House is on the warpath now regarding the Mueller investigation and the FBI, the DOJ spying on the Trump campaign. I don’t know when it’s all gonna fall out, but I think that the pieces of their strategy are being assembled and we are close to seeing whatever they’re planning be implemented.
To set this up, I want to go back just to remind you, the New York Times story yesterday, it was first made available to me via tweet from somebody who had seen it. And the tweet was written in such a way that the New York Times apparently is writing a story that now acknowledges the FBI was spying on the Trump campaign.
And that I have learned is exactly how the Drive-By Media, who don’t work at the New York Times, actually did interpret the story. When they first saw the headline, when they first heard about the story, they were gulping. They were going, “Oh, no.” The New York Times is actually now admitting — this is the story where they tried to get some honeypot two or three different times, two or three different ways to entrap George Papadopoulos who, by the way, I’m going to be interviewing next Tuesday for the upcoming issue of The Limbaugh Letter.
And so the Times story yesterday, if you read the whole thing, was an attempt to get out in front of what I think is being put in place by the White House, the Barr investigation that has begun, by the way. And Barr himself has acknowledged that in the testimony up on Capitol Hill this week. I think everybody knows in this campaign – I think it’s why Comey wrote his op-ed last week. I think it’s why the New York Times had this story, everybody’s trying to get out in front of the inspector general report and what the Barr investigation’s gonna be. Because the people involved in this, including those in the media who were complicit, know full well they were running a hoax, a full-fledged scandal.
Now, what happened last night that tipped me off that something is on the verge of happening, the White House released a four-page letter written by Emmet Flood. Emmet Flood is White House counsel for Donald Trump. And the letter that he wrote is to the attorney general, William Barr. I would love to read the whole thing to you, but I’m not going to.
It’s four pages. If you haven’t seen it, we’ll put the link at RushLimbaugh.com. It will open as a PDF in your browser with the link that we have, and then if you want, you can print that as a PDF and have it as a separate stand alone PDF file either on your phone or your laptop, but it will originally open as a PDF file in your computer browser.
“Dear Mr. Attorney General: I write on behalf of the office of the president to memorialize concerns relating to the special counsel report and to address executive privilege issues associated with its release.” And that right there tells you, executive privilege issues, they’re getting ready for hardball.
Now, the Flood letter is the White House response to the Mueller report. And parts of this letter are classically excellent and great and had me standing up and cheering, while at the same time making my blood boil all over again to realize what actually was perpetrated here.
“The SCO Report suffers from an extraordinary legal defect: It quite deliberately fails to comply with the requirements of governing law.” In other words, the White House response is this report is not even legal.
“Lest the report’s release be taken as a precedent or perceived as somehow legitimating the defect,” the lawlessness of the report. “I write with both the president and future presidents in mind to make the following points clear. I begin with the SCO stated conclusion on the obstruction question: The SCO concluded that the evidence ‘prevent[ed] [it] from conclusively determining that no criminal conduct occurred.’ But conclusively determining that no criminal conduct occurred was not the SCO’s assigned task, because making conclusive determinations of innocence is never the task of the federal prosecutor. What prosecutors are supposed to do is complete an investigation and then either ask the grand jury to return an indictment or decline to charge the case,” and that is it.
“When prosecutors decline to charge, they make that decision not because they have conclusively determin[ed] that no criminal conduct occurred, but rather because they do not believe that the investigated conduct constitutes a crime for which all the elements can be proven to the satisfaction of a jury beyond a reasonable doubt.”
In other words, if you don’t think you can make the case, if you’ve investigated, you’re a prosecutor, and you don’t have the goods, you drop it. You don’t keep searching until you can exonerate the accused because that’s not the job of any prosecutor. The prosecutor either has the goods or he doesn’t. If he doesn’t, that’s it. He doesn’t announce what he’s got, he doesn’t impugn the accused, he doesn’t say “we couldn’t conclusively exonerate.” You don’t do any of that. And that’s why this report, Mr. Flood essentially says on many other points, is illegal, essentially violates the law and ethics.
“In the American justice system,” Mr. Attorney General, “innocence is presumed; there is never any need for prosecutors to conclusively determine,” the innocence of the accused because that’s the starting point. The accused never has to establish his innocence. He never has to exonerate himself. And it’s not the job of the prosecutor to exonerate because the accused is innocent from the get-go. And if you can’t prove it, you don’t have a case.
This is why I’ve said this report can be done in two pages. It didn’t need 448. All those pages are to slime and smear Trump by listing a bunch of garbage that could not be used to even charge him with a crime and so that stuff should never even have been included is the basic point Flood is making here. That stuff is prejudicial, it’s defamatory. And the fact that you include is when you can’t use it to even make a charge is outrageous. This report has no business being released, period. It had no business being produced as it was, and we’re getting it on record here from the White House that we think this is a travesty of the American judicial system.
RUSH: Welcome back. Just a couple of more highlights here from the Emmet Flood letter, and I will explain to you what I think all this means at the conclusion. “Second, and equally importantly, in closing its investigation, the SCO [Special Counsel’s Office] had only one job, to ‘provide the attorney general with a confidential report explaining the prosecution or declination [declining to prosecute] decisions reached by the special counsel.’ Yet the one thing the SCO was obligated to do is the very thing the SCO intentionally and unapologetically refused to do.
“The SCO made neither a prosecution decision not a declination decision on the obstruction question. Instead. it transmitted a 182-page discussion of raw evidentiary material combined with its own inconclusive observations on the arguable legal significance of the gathered content. As a result, none of the report’s Volume II complied with the obligation imposed by the governing regulation to ‘explain the prosecution or declination decisions reached.’” In other words, they submiedt 180-some-odd pages of Trump BS, things that they don’t like that Trump did.
Not things that made them decide or not that he was chargeable or not. They just planted a bunch of BS destined for the House, destined for impeachment, in violation of the charge that special counsels have. You either produce the evidence that you’re using to charge, or you explain why you’re declining to charge. But you don’t do what Mueller has done! You don’t list all of this raw stuff that is essentially what an FBI file would say before it’s been vetted. The only reason… They’re livid about this at the White House, and they damn well ought to be.
“The [Special Counsel’s Office] instead produced a prosecutorial curiosity part ‘truth commission’ report and part law school exam paper.” This is another key part here: “The president is aware that, had he chosen to do so, he could have withheld such information,” talking about how much cooperation there was in the previous paragraph, how many witnesses, how many documents, how many pages, how cooperative they were with Mueller.
“The president is aware that had he chosen to do so, he could have withheld such information on executive privilege grounds, basing such an assertion on the established principle that to permit release of such information might have a chilling effect on a president’s advisers, causing them to be less than fully frank…” This is setting up that they’re gonna start declaring executive privilege, and they’re gonna do it on McGahn, because that’s what these clowns in the House want. They don’t even want Mueller. They don’t really want Barr. They want a piece of Mueller, but they really want McGahn — and this is a telegraphing that we’re playing hardball now.
Screw you people! We’re gonna start declaring executive privilege. We could have done it with Mueller, and we didn’t because we chose to be cooperative. (Final little excerpt here…) “Not so long ago, the idea that a law enforcement official…” This is about Comey. “Not so long ago, the idea that a law enforcement official might provide the press with confidential governmental information for the proclaimed purpose of prompting a criminal investigation of an identified individual would have troubled Americans of all political persuasions.
“That the head of our country’s top law enforcement agency [the FBI] has actually done so to the president of the United States should frighten every friend of individual liberty. Under our system of government, unelected executive branch officers and intelligence agency personnel are supposed to answer to the person elected by the people — the president — and not the other way around.” These people don’t answer to Comey! Nobody answers to Comey in the executive branch.
“This is not a Democratic or a Republican issue; it is a matter of having a government responsible to the people, and, again, not the other way around. In the partisan commotion surrounding the released report, it would be well to remember that what can be done to a president can be done to any of us.” I gotta take a break. I’m gonna tell you what I think this letter and other little bread crumbs out there mean. So hang on.
RUSH: Now, this Emmet Flood letter to William Barr I just excerpted to you, I think indicates that the White House now on the warpath. I think that’s why Comey had his op-ed a couple days ago, and the honeypot story in the New York Times about Papadopoulos, admitting the FBI was spying on the Trump campaign. It’s all starting to come together now.
RUSH: We were overtaken by that the New York Times story yesterday. I fretted all day that maybe I was spending too much time on it, but then I found out today, “No way!” It was crucially important, because the upshot of it was that the New York Times was forced to admit the FBI was spying on the Trump campaign, something Obama has denied, something Clapper has denied, something Brennan has denied. They’ve all denied it, but they had to admit it yesterday.
Now, you’re not hearing much about the Flood letter in the Drive-By Media today, and there’s a reason for it. I don’t think they understand its relevance and importance. The only reference to it I saw today was Juan Williams of Fox, and he was mocking any Republican or conservative journalist that might think the Flood letter to the attorney general matters. Well, if you have a chance to go read it, it’s brilliantly written, and it’s understandable, and it decimates the special counsel report while explaining how cooperative the White House was.
It savages Comey and his usurpation of constitutional power he does not have. It savages the Special Counsel’s Office and report for turning the American system of justice upside down in releasing a report in a manner it should never have been prepared. If there were no charges against anybody in it, then this thing is corrupt as it exists. That’s my word, not his. But I’m telling you, it is — and any honest prosecutor will tell you: This Mueller report is a travesty.
If you’re not gonna charge anybody, you don’t list all of this stuff that you think they did that you personally disapprove of, unless you are continuing to run an operation to get rid of ’em, which they are. And this was designed to be used by Democrats in the House to start their so-called impeachment proceedings. Now, let me tell you what I think the Flood letter means, and I am wild guessing. Well, it’s not a wild guess. There is some informed guessing going on.
My point is, I haven’t spoken to anybody about this. So you have to give me a wide berth in being wrong. I find it fascinating, by the way. This letter is… To anybody that can think and has a broad-based enough knowledge of this whole scam, this whole hoax, this letter should provide a lot of information. It ought to answer a lotta questions about motivation to the Drive-Bys and everybody who’s — and I think some of them do know. They’re trying to get out in front of this now.
They’re trying to excuse all of this behavior the past three years in advance of the inspector general report and the Barr investigation. I think that this letter from Emmet Flood to William Barr indicates that Trump is on the warpath. And I had that really confirmed for me last night when I saw Trump being interviewed by Catherine Herridge at Fox News, in which he said he’s very close to declassifying everything having to do with the FISA warrant applications and that he’s held back — he’s held back — because he wanted all of this to settle.
He knows the people running this scam against him, he knows how dirty they are, and he wanted it to wrap up. I think this explains why we got this op-ed from Comey. Why does he keep inserting himself in this? Self-preservation. It’s why the New York Times ran story about the honeypot working with Stefan Halper trying to entrap Papadopoulos. They are trying to get out in front and spin what they know is coming. But, folks, there’s gonna be too much of it. They aren’t going to be able to spin their way out of this.
When any president uses the bully pulpit to put a story out, and if he has good people like Emmet Flood and William Barr — and if you’ve got pit bulls like Rudy Giuliani — to go out there and tell the story, and at the same time declassify all the stuff that they have been petrified was gonna be declassified, there isn’t anybody that can compete with it. Jerry Nadler is gonna be so outmatched. Pencil Neck is gonna be outmatched. Pelosi’s gonna be outmatched. Chuck You Schumer and Feinstein are gonna be outmatched.
They’re not gonna be able to keep up with it.
They can spin the drip, drip, drip like the New York Times yesterday trying to spin this as (sputtering), “Well, y-y-yeah, the FBI had to spy. They had to spy! Papadopoulos was running around telling people that the Russians had Hillary emails.” No, he wasn’t. But this — and Comey’s email, Clapper and these guys going on CNN (sputtering), “Oh, I d-d-don’t think it was spying. I — I — I — I didn’t really say that.” They’re starting to flee now, and they’re trying to individually spin little things, but I suspect that this letter means that they’re gonna open the floodgates.
And not even the New York Times is going to be able to spin the volume of stuff when you include what’s gonna be declassified. This is why so many of you along with me have been so insistent for so long about the need to declassify. We’ve wanted this to happen. We have wanted… You know, when this investigation began is known. It’s in the documents what happened. How this thing actually began will tell people so much.
They haven’t wanted to get that out. Rosenstein countless times refused Devin Nunes requests to turn it over and be seen. Well, once it gets declassified and released, that’s the floodgates. Plus, you put people like Barr and Rudy out of there and Emmet Flood telling the story. I think whoever actually is responsible for telling Trump — or maybe it was Trump himself. Whoever it was, the decision not to declassify until Mueller was done was a very smart thing to do. Wait until they’re finished.
Wait ’til they fired everything they’ve got, and now we find out they don’t have anything. Now is the time to do this. So here is what I, your host, believe is happening. The Flood letter is important for three reasons. A, it will be seen. The country is going to see this at some point. The Drive-Bys are gonna try to ignore it and say, “It’s just nothing but, you know, typical lawyer letter to another lawyer.” But it was intentionally put out now to rebut the Mueller report. I’m telling you, you should really go to RushLimbaugh.com and click on that link and read it, because it rebuts the Mueller report exactly as you think the Mueller report should be rebutted.
And it does it in a point-by-point way on the matters of the law. It rejects this report as being in violation of the law, in violation of prosecutorial ethics, in violation of everything that we understand about the American system of justice. Pointing out that Mueller outrageously inverted the burden of proof! Mueller starts this investigation claiming that he’s gotta find a way to exonerate Trump in order to clear him. No prosecutor ever does that! That’s not our system!
Every perp is considered innocent from the beginning, and it has to be proved beyond a reasonable doubt. Mueller, in this report, is tantamount admitting that they knew Trump was guilty, and they were setting out to prove it. They were setting out to exonerate him, and they couldn’t exonerate him. This is what this BS about (sputtering), “We can’t come to a conclusion on obstruction, uh, because, uh, uh, we just…” Well, it’s not your job to come to a conclusion on exoneration. You either charge other you don’t, and they didn’t charge, they got nothing. That’s it! No, 128 pages of BS.
Mueller’s theory he couldn’t exonerate Trump violates a prosecutor’s duty to either charge or decline to charge based on whatever the evidence. It is never the burden of any American to prove to the prosecutor that he’s innocent, and yet Mueller turned this upside down and effectively did this in this shameful report of his. “Well, we couldn’t really exonerate.”
Remember even when the day it was announced, “There’s nothing in here that should be construed as exonerating the president.” Well, that’s not your damn job, you hack! And of course it was worded that way on purpose to fuel this continuing obsession with throwing Trump out of office and overturning the 2016 elections for the media and for the Democrat Party.
The second thing I think is happening, the reason the Flood memo is important, this letter, it lays the groundwork for Trump to assert executive privilege by pointing out how they could have at any stage in the Mueller investigation, but that they didn’t. They cooperated. They turned over everything that was asked of them.
The only thing Trump didn’t do, he didn’t testify in person, but he answered written questions, but that’s it. They let Don McGahn talk to Mueller for 30 hours. They could have declared executive privilege and there’s not a damn thing Mueller could have done about it. I think they’re going to.
The Democrats don’t care about Barr. What they want is Mueller. They want Mueller up there, and they are hell-bent on getting Mueller to say that Barr misrepresented his report. Then they want McGahn to come up, and they want McGahn to try to testify that Trump witness tampered, that Trump told me to lie. That’s what Clinton was impeached for. They’re gonna exert executive privilege on this. They’re gonna deny the Congress the chance to talk to McGahn. That’s what I think this letter sets up.
So the Democrats are gonna huff and puff about Barr, but they don’t want Barr. They want Mueller, and then they want McGahn. That whole thing yesterday, including Hillary on Rachel Maddow, all of this is a charade. As I told Mr. Snerdley earlier, Barr could not be held in contempt. He volunteered. He was not there under subpoena. He was not there under command. They cannot hold him in contempt.
All this rigmarole talk about holding Barr in contempt is flat-out BS, and any journalist with a modicum of education would understand this. Barr volunteered, he volunteered to cooperate, he volunteered two weeks ago to testify before both judiciary committees, House and Senate. You cannot be in contempt until you have flouted a subpoena and until you have withheld critical information.
Barr was never under subpoena, and he disclosed the Mueller report by regulation that he had no reason to give to Congress. He was not obligated to give it to Congress. He did that to cooperate with ’em. Many of us, “Don’t do it. Don’t be cooperative.” But they are and were cooperative I think to set up what’s coming. The only thing that has been subpoenaed by Congress is the unredacted report. Not Barr. Barr has not been subpoenaed, but the unredacted report has been.
And in point of fact, that subpoena is BS. You know why? The report is 95% unredacted. All of the bad stuff on Trump has been disclosed. There isn’t any dirt on Trump that hasn’t been disclosed. The stuff that has been withheld is grand jury, which, by law, cannot be released. That’s that famous stuff that’s called 6(e) material. But they’re hell-bent. They think something’s been withheld.
Here’s the other bottom line. Remember there is a version of the report, unredacted version up there in Congress. It’s in a room. Members of Congress can go read it if they want to. They can’t take it out of there, they can’t copy it, but they can go read it. No Democrat’s have. Latest information I had was that two members of Congress had read it.
So the next thing that’s gonna happen, the Democrats are gonna bring Mueller in. And everybody thinks this is so that Mueller can really divulge what Barr has hidden, what Mueller can report that Barr is covering up. But that’s not really the reason. They want to press Mueller on the Office of Legal Counsel guidance about not indicting a sitting president.
They want Mueller to come in and admit that he believes a sitting president can be. They’re looking for backup from anybody with ties to the DOJ that thinks we can indict a sitting president because they are chomping at the bit to indict Trump, although for what I don’t know because there’s nothing indictable in the report.
Now, Barr said that he asked Mueller point-blank three times whether the Office of Legal Counsel guidance on not indicting a president played any role in his decision to not make a decision on the obstruction. In other words, Barr says, “Look, Bob. Did you obtain did you not charge obstruction because the OLC says you can’t indict a sitting president anyway?” And if Mueller had said, “Yeah,” then they could say, “Oh, so you would have indicted him if it weren’t for this guideline you can’t indict a sitting president?”
Mueller was asked three times if the reason he didn’t charge obstruction is because he didn’t think he could indict anyway, the answer three times was no. He didn’t charge anything because he’s not sure he had anything. But Nadler and Pelosi and the Democrats want Mueller to come up and say the opposite.
RUSH: By the way, folks, on the Emmet Flood letter to William Barr, do not be intimidated. Go ahead and read it. You’ll understand it. Emmet Flood used to clerk for Justice Scalia. And the amazing thing about this four-page letter is that it does not need a lot of translation for laypeople or non-legally trained people.
And it’s well worth your time to read this thing. ‘Cause it is exactly what Mueller and everybody involved needs to hear about this report. Now, let me cut to the chase. ‘Cause it’s time to get to your phones and move on. What the Democrats really want is not Barr. And it really isn’t Mueller. They’re gonna go through the motions of talking, well, they’ve done Barr, they’re gonna go do Mueller next. Remember, everything they’re doing is to continue the show or the image that Trump colluded with Russia, then Trump obstructed. That’s all they’ve got.
What they really want is Don McGahn. Despite all of the efforts they make to make you think Mueller holds the key, they know that Mueller doesn’t. This report is done, it’s over, there was no obstruction, and there’s no collusion, and there’s no amount of dancing around and image making and PR spin that can convince anybody.
In fact, the impeachment numbers in polling data are now into the twenties. It’s over. Since impeachment is political with the latest polling data of people supporting impeachment now in the high twenties, that’s over. So the only thing remaining for them is to go after Don McGahn, who Mueller spoke to for 30 hours. And the news is that Trump told McGahn to lie about whether or not he gave the order to fire Mueller. That is witness tampering.
They want McGahn, and they want to have at McGahn, they want to try to get McGahn to admit that Trump tampered with him as a witness. That is where the White House is going to exert executive privilege. That’s where this is all headed, and the Flood letter is setting all of this up. That’s where they’re headed and the longer they go down this road, the more distracted they’re gonna continue to be from everything else that does actually matter.
Because the truth of this is, if you look at these public polls that show support for impeachment dwindling, I mean, just late last week or early this week, in one poll it was down to 37%. Morning Consult was 37. Now in a poll today or yesterday, 27. It means that the American public is not gonna support impeachment. That’s not going to happen, since it’s political.
So now the only thing left the Democrats think they’ve got is witness tampering, and that would revive impeachment in the public opinion, if they think they could pull it off.