Republican Sen. Pat Toomey said Tuesday called the investigation into possible collusion between members of Donald Trump's presidential campaign and Russia "overblown" and said he isn't paying much attention to it.This is not exactly what one could call "accurate" is it? Let's take the Senator Feinstein part first.
"I have seen that (Sen.) Dianne Feinstein has stated to her credit -- liberal Democrat who has been on the intelligence committee for I don't know, for decades I think -- she has acknowledged that there is absolutely no evidence of any collusion anywhere," Toomey said on the Chris Stigall Show on WPHT radio. "(Sen.) Mark Warner has said, the Democrat from Virginia, has said the exact same thing. (Former FBI Director) James Comey told us at the hearing that the President himself is not the subject of investigation.
"That's because nobody has found any evidence that suggests that he should be the subject of an investigation. So, yeah, this is just wildly overblown and fortunately most of us are not paying any attention."
Senator Toomey says that she "acknowledged that there is absolutely no evidence of any collusion anywhere" but that's not exactly what she said. She said on CNN that she hasn't seen any evidence that would establish collusion. Not that there "absolutely isn't any." She's also depending on the Mueller investigation to find whatever is there.
In logical terms, Senator, that's a far cry from acknowledging that there "is absolutely no evidence...anywhere" doncha think?
So that's a lie, isn't it?
But is the Comey similarly innacurate?
Why yes, yes it is. Take a look at this from Jonathan Chait at New York Magazine:
It is true that Comey told Trump that the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation was not targeting him personally at the time. But many portions of Comey’s testimony also indicated just how precarious that assurance was. Comey explained that his leadership team did not agree on whether they could even give Trump this assurance at all.And Chait quotes this from Comey's testimony:
Wasn’t unanimous. One of the members of the leadership team had a view you that although it was technically true we did not have a counter-intelligence file case open on then President-elect Trump. His concern was because we’re looking at the potential, again, that’s the subject of the investigation, coordination between the campaign and Russia, because it was President Trump, President-elect Trump’s campaign, this person’s view was inevitably his behavior, his conduct will fall within the scope of that work. And so he was reluctant to make the statement. I disagreed. I thought it was fair to say what was literally true.And then Comey's expansion of the above:
And the leader had that view that didn’t change. His view was still that it was probably although literally true, his concern was it could be misleading, because the nature of the investigation was such that it might well touch, obviously it would touch, the campaign, and the person that headed the campaign would be the candidate, and so that was his view throughout.Chait explains:
Comey used the word “technically” once, and “literally” twice, to describe the non-investigation of Trump. And he explained the reason for these caveats: The FBI was investigating the Trump campaign. Since Trump ran the Trump campaign, it seemed highly plausible that the investigation could and would eventually lead to Trump himself. [Italics in original.]The "we're not investigating you" part was about the Steele dossier. Back to Comey's testimony:
I was briefing him about salacious and unverified material. It was in a context of that that he had a strong and defensive reaction about that not being true. My reading of it was it was important for me to assure him we were not person investigating him. So the context then was actually narrower, focused on what I just talked to him about. It was very important because it was, first, true, and second, I was worried very much about being in kind of a J. Edgar Hoover-type situation. I didn’t want him thinking I was briefing him on this to sort of hang it over him in some way.Look at all that's gone missing from Senator Pat Toomey's deceptive "Comey told us at the hearing that the President himself is not the subject of investigation."
The biggest part of Toomey's Trump cover?
It's this. When Senator Cotton asked one very simple question:
Cotton: Do you think Donald Trump colluded with Russia?Hey, isn't that basically was Senator Feinstein said?
Comey: That’s a question I don’t think I should answer in an opening setting. As I said, when I left, we did not have an investigation focused on President Trump. But that’s a question that will be answered by the investigation, I think.
In any event, if the answer was a simple "no" why didn't he just say "no"? If the answer was "there's absolutely evidence of any collusion anywhere" why didn't he just say that instead of "I don’t think I should answer in an opening setting."?
Senator Pat Toomey is giving political cover to the little-handed pussy-grabber.
How disappointing, Senator.