EDITORIAL: There is good reason for Americans to distrust the FBI


There are lies and there are lies. FBI fabrications designed to ruin Donald Trump go unpunished, but falsehoods made in the former president’s defense could lead to prosecution. Unmistakable is a double standard in what passes for “justice” in the United States, circa 2022. In particular, two cases demonstrate the stunning disparity and contribute to the festering cynicism Americans harbor toward the rule of law.

First, consider the high-profile trial earlier this month of Igor Danchenko. The FBI informant was acquitted of lying to agents while serving as the primary source for the dossier compiled by British spy Christopher Steele and used to contend that then-candidate Trump was colluding with Russians. Though a prosecutorial loss for special counsel John Durham, the proceedings unveiled the FBI’s callous disregard for candor in its own conduct.

Americans learned for the first time that the FBI offered $1 million for solid authentication of the wild Trump shenanigans alleged in the Steele dossier. Given that Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign and the Democratic National Committee had already spent tens of thousands of dollars to acquire the dirty opposition research, the size of the FBI’s reward to verify its contents signified a level of political bias that would have won admiration in Tammany Hall.

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Though no one managed to tie down the loose claims and scoop up the government geld, the agency brazenly presented the bogus document to federal judges and won authorization for surveillance of the Trump campaign, which continued into the Trump presidency.

Thus far, the three-year, $6 million Durham investigation has led to acquittals of two FBI informants, with one mid-level FBI lawyer pleading guilty to making a false statement to the court. No agency official involved in the conspiracy to subvert the Trump presidency has been hauled into court, let alone into jail.

Now contrast the good fortune of Mr. Trump’s enemies with the misfortune of his allies. In a case related to the congressional Jan. 6 committee investigation, a federal judge ruled on Oct. 19 that the former president’s unsuccessful challenge of the 2020 presidential election results in Georgia knowingly contained fraudulent vote tabulations.

In an email sought by the committee and dated Dec. 31, 2020, lawyer John Eastman wrote to the Trump legal team that some of its assertions made in court filings contesting vote counts in Fulton County were, heaven forfend, inaccurate. “The Court finds that these emails are sufficiently related to and in furtherance of a conspiracy to defraud the United States,” wrote Judge David Carter of U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

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Consequently, Mr. Trump and his election lawyers are to face new forms of inquisition conducted by their congressional enemies while FBI operatives who conspired to ruin the Trump presidency chortle at the spectacle from the peanut gallery.

It’s no wonder that Americans believe the FBI conducts its investigations with a political agenda edge out those confident in its fairness, 43%-42%, according to a recent poll published by The Federalist and Susquehanna Polling & Research. Sadly, supposed agents of “justice” are themselves responsible for tipping the nation into cynicism.




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