Friday, October 9, 2020

Barr: Durham Focused On Winning Prosecutions

Axios has the story: Barr tells Republicans Durham report won't be ready by election.

Right up front you can see that there's a narrative problem. Prosecutors are put on a case to prosecute if there's a crime--not to write a report, except in exceptional circumstances. Why, then, all the calls for a "report" from Durham?

This is why:

“This is the nightmare scenario. Essentially, the year and a half of arguably the number one issue for the Republican base is virtually meaningless if this doesn't happen before the election," a GOP congressional aide told Axios.


My take on this? Yes, of course Barr knows how much the future of our country is riding on this election. OTOH, he also knows that no matter the outcome of the election that future will be seriously jeopardized anyway--unless he and Durham can present a beyond-a-reasonable-doubt case for the big picture conspiracy. His calculation, in my opinion, is that only that result will get the attention of the nation. It's an unfortunate situation, but it's the reality of where America is as a society.

But note something else. Barr isn't actually saying he's holding back to avoid the appearance of politics--although he may believe that is a concern if he only indicts a few before the election but not the "bigger fish he has to fry", as President Trump told Maria Bartiromo. To me, that's a legitimate concern when your goal is getting the nation's attention and holding it.


What we're hearing: Barr is communicating that Durham is taking his investigation extremely seriously and is focused on winning prosecutions.

  • According to one of the sources briefed on the conversations Barr said Durham is working in a deliberate and calculated fashion, and they need to be patient.
  • The general sense of the talks, the source says, is that Durham is not preoccupied with completing his probe by a certain deadline for political purposes.

What would you expect from Durham? To put together some indictments--and then risk losing in court because he rushed it? That would be an almost incalculable political disaster.

Frankly, I'd have a lot more sympathy for the GOP as a party if they'd done more to help Trump for much of the past four years. Yes, Trump made some bad personnel moves--although some were more or less forced on him by the political situation he found himself in, without unified support from the GOP. The fact of the matter remains, however, that Trump has been undermined systematically by key establishment Republicans. He has had to conduct what amounts to an insurgency--not even able to count on his own administration, who were loyal instead to Congress and the Senate rather than to the Executive. The first two years of GOP fecklessness led directly to the Dem House of 2018. 

Trump now has an AG who IS loyal to the interests of the Executive and to the Constitution, and it's hard to blame Barr for putting those interests above the wavering interests of the Legislative GOP. His strategy is coherent and not based on the political motives of the moment.

Behind the scenes: Trump has grown increasingly frustrated with Barr and the Justice Department for not moving more quickly on the investigation.

  • ...
  • In recent days, Trump has publicly criticized Barr and FBI Director Christopher Wray for not moving fast enough.
  • "To be honest, Bill Barr is going to go down as either the greatest attorney general in the history of the country or he’s going to go down as, you know, a very sad situation," Trump said during a phone interview with Fox Business on Thursday.
  • "He’s got all the information he needs. They want to get more, more, more. They keep getting more. I said, 'you don’t need any more.'"
  • Thursday report by the AP said Barr is also frustrated by Trump’s public pronouncements about the case.

I'm going to give the benefit of the doubt to the lawyers here. The lawyers surrounding Barr are also the same lawyers who served Trump well in squelching Team Mueller and then the Fake Impeachment--despite the GOP Establishment's fecklessness. Remember, Durham didn't even begin his work until Spring of 2019--no fault of his own, since Chuck Grassley, for all his current posturing, stood in the way of Trump shaking up DoJ before Barr was allowed in after the 2018 Midterm disaster in the House. Now Senate GOPers want Durham to hurry up and pull their bacon out of the fire--where were they before November 2018?

Trump, as usual, has a point. Barr is banking on the rule of law winning over the country in the end game here. Trump would prefer a slash and burn approach right now, knowing that our politics and legal establishment have been broken by the Left. But that's risky. Telling a prosecutor looking at the biggest scandal in the history of the country that "you don't need any more [evidence]"? With all the entrenched Leftist control of most of our institutions? I have to side with Barr and Durham here--the legendarily aggressive litigator and the dogged career prosecutor. We need the big picture to come out and trust that the majority of Americans will finally realize that the future of our constitutional order is at stake.

Where does that leave us? Some in the GOP are suggesting an alternative: Accelerated declassification of all that can be declassified. That could be fine, however the question remains whether that would be sufficient to get the attention of the critical "undecided" or "independent" voters. Will they really pore over the declassified documents and ponder the implications, even with the help of pundits? Or will they find it, as Patrick Basham has maintained, "confusing" and distracting?

Successful prosecutions of the big picture conspiracy is the answer that offers the most prospect for success beyond the election. What, then, if the unthinkable happens and Biden pulls off an upset? Maybe then will be the time for a big picture report ahead of the prosecutions that the Left will surely seek to quash.


  1. fecklessness Is an excellent choice to describe the gop. There is still a whiff of it, with the number of Senate Confirmations that should have happened. 56 vacancies on district courts. My gut feel lots of confirmations still pending for non judicial nominees. Not to mention how the Senate Intel Committee overall has been a significant obstacle to Trump, especially over its confirmation power.

    And the chamber of commerce, and its senate allies, have been fighting Trump since day one, openly prior to the midterms, and passive aggressively since then. My theory is only after Trump got a couple of sitting Senators to lose their midterms, did he even start getting the time of day from the GOP Senate.

    I wonder what the worst case is on the scope of this conspiracy against Trump. Hint, hint - this would make a great blog post Mark!

  2. Mark, your points are well taken. I don’t think Biden winning is “unthinkable”
    and I am particularly concerned about getting a jury that will do the right thing even in the face of strong evidence. The environment is simply too toxic. What does it take to win a case like this-a 7-5 verdict do it? The left will be very happy
    to deal with a big picture report with the same disdain they treat anything else that does not support their worldview. Extremely difficult situation for Barr and I hope his view of America prevails. I share it, but not with the same level of conviction.

  3. Mark, your good sense and encouragement about this situation is very beneficial -- and is appreciated.

    1. Tx, Mike. Believe me, I agonize over this, too.

  4. If Trump was focused on being the president and being re-elected, he wouldn't need to be worried about his exceptional AG or indictments. Another four years would be clear on the horizon. The dimocrat candidate is Joe ''Bumblin'' Biden ffs!

    1. Who says he isn’t focused?

      - TexasDude

  5. In a business sense PDT is correct, the perfect is the enemy of the good. In the legal sense the more evidence the better. In this case Barr is on solid ground. Rush through, no convictions. In my view, winning the election at this point doesn't depend on what Barr does or doesn't do, minds are made up. As long as the investigation concludes before Jan.'21 the country will be better for it. As to an untainted jury pool, I'd look for a change of venue to a place like South Dakota. As if that could happen.....

    1. Realize that a NYC jury convicted Hunter Biden's buddies in a fraud case. If they can do that, it is cinch they can get a conviction of a James Comey.

      Rob S

    2. Point. I agree. But it has to be a solid case. Juries really do consider the evidence and they really do consider beyond-a-reasonable-doubt. Trump is engaged in political theater--it's part of any modern president's job description. But telling super experienced lawyers that they have already have enough evidence is also theater--not legal advice in the real world. People need to chill and realize this.

    3. “that future will be *seriously* jeopardized anyway--unless he and Durham can present a beyond-a-reasonable-doubt case for the *big picture* conspiracy.”
      Not necessarily.
      Announcing busts of famous DS perps, w/o also bringing a case for the Big Picture, would still
      1) hugely refute SparkleFarts’ boast, of his Admin. having been scandal-free,
      2) hugely support Righty claims, that the SparkleFarts Admin. was the most corrupt in US history, and
      3) hugely support Righty claims, that a Biden Admin. would lead to the effective liquidation of the GOP.

      "the number one issue for the Republican base is virtually meaningless if this doesn't happen...."
      Because they sense, that this result all-but guarantees, that the DS perps are let off the hook by a Dem PotUS, thus freed up to move (e.g. w/ more Frame Jobs) to ensure, that all effective opposition is overwhelmed.

      "As long as the investigation concludes before Jan.'21 the country will be better...."
      Not necessarily, to any major degree.
      When Biden shuts down the whole probe, the MSM will laugh, and thus put the Right in a position of either accelerating secession mov’ts, or sitting and waiting to be liquidated, one-by-one-by-one.

      "winning the election at this point doesn't *depend* on what Barr does...."
      Maybe not, but it still may quite influence turnout levels, esp. among moderate liberals.

  6. Mark, I appreciate your well reasoned blog and comments.
    Found it fairly recently, but now read it daily.

    I think if Barr has to sacrifice Trump to save the country and its institutions, he will do it.

    1. Tx Robert.

      "I think if Barr has to sacrifice Trump to save the country and its institutions, he will do it."

      I don't think Barr sees that as the choice he's faced with.

  7. Complexities of the coup attempt notwithstanding, waiting until after the election to come down with the hammer doesn't strike me as a winning strategy.

    If Biden wins, then Dems also grab the senate and hold the house. And when that happens, all those meticulously-crafted beautiful plans of Barr-Durham go down the (1984)memory hole.

    I mean, these polls. Can they all be wrong? Trump didn't help himself with his opening debate clown show. He put on display all the crap about his character people despise. Even now, he can't keep his mouth shut.

    When does a 74 y/o man grow up?

    1. Trump is grown up. Just with a style that is in your face confrontational that stuffed shirt Republicans tut tutted and clicked their tongues about.

      Does it help him always? No, but it got him the presidency.

      I actually like his Democrat street debate tactics, but that is just me.

      - TexasDude

    2. I'd like to flatter myself that the election hangs upon what people read at this blog, but the fact of the matter is--most likely--people have discounted that already. Same with impeachment. When was the last time you heard about impeachment?

      "I mean, these polls. Can they all be wrong?"

      Short answer, Yes. Can the MSM be wrong about Trump colluding with Putin? Could they all be lying.

      Here's a poll for you. Gallup asked people whether they're better off now than four years ago. 56% said yes and only 32% said no--after all that has transpired.

      "Even now, he can't keep his mouth shut."

      Trump winning by keeping his mouth shut--what a concept! Straight out of the Dem playbook for him--shut him out of the MSM and then persuade him to keep his mouth shut in front of a national audience.

    3. The other aspect is that Trump has 87 million followers. Him complaining about Barr and saying Barr should be releasing everything, tells everyone that there's lots of stuff that's about to come out now - priming the pump, as it were.


    4. Yes, that's part of what I call "political theater."

      Keep an eye on the Daniel Jones story. The very fact that Durham is pulling such a connected guy--connected to Senate, to USIC, to Dem 'elders', to the money behind it all--in front of a grand jury tells everyone that he's serious about the Deep State and not intimidated.

      Here's how SWC puts it:

      "An investigation of Jones and his organization will certainly lead to exposure of Jones’ communications, and all the financial transactions between Jones and his clients and partners.

      "THAT could go anywhere — including back to Democrat Senators on the Senate Intelligence Committee."

      And I'm saying Senate Intel would probably only be the half of it--at most. Because anyone who thinks Senate Intel acts without coordinating is thinking straight.

  8. I don't see why Trump cannot just let loose declassifications. I'm sure a good amount can be released without affecting prosecutions. My speculation is Trump already knows what the timeline is looking like, and reports of a recent document dump by DNI Radcliffe is a source of potential docs to be made public.

  9. Come Nov. 4th I hope to be standing corrected!

  10. To begin with I understand completely that neither Barr or Durham, nor anyone else in this whole cast of players, gives a rats patooty for my opinion. My vote is only one in a sea of votes which at best is viewed as a nuisance and at worse a mistake by our most excellent and select. So, Barr and Durham are going to do whatever they're going to do.

    Unfortunately the enemy gets a vote, and it does count. That vote is the power through social, news, and entertainment media to suppress, obfuscate, quash, divert, or simply disappear inconvenient truths, to borrow a phrase; and the power to delay, misdirect, or out-right countermand actions through administrative control by the DS. They are well practiced in using these weapons.

    Unless the plan is for a mass trial with Hillary, Obama, Biden, Pelosi, Schiff, Mueller, Brennan, Clapper, and Comey lined up in the dock together it will not, after the election, capture the attention of a population that–following impeachment, the ChiCom Croup, ACB's confirmation, the tension of this election, and its inevitably dramatic aftermath–is basically exhausted by all the political theater. Piecemeal trials, scattered over years, involving a convoluted theory about the actions of a huge cast of characters explained in legalese will, at best, be devolved into a historic footnote of, "Some people, did something." And that is only if Trump wins resoundingly and the GOP at least holds the Senate. Any electoral outcome less than that and it may never even rise to the level of footnote.

    People are people; and most just can't manage the energy required and try to have real lives–jobs, families, debts, etc.–at the same time. That's the true advantage of a DS in a republic. The Select and DS players get paid, as their day job, to do what the citizen must try keep up with as a third shift in the manufactory of life.
    Tom S.

    1. Yeah, you only get folks attn., if you really rub their noses in the dangers of the DS.
      A famous quote from Trotsky goes along lines of
      "You May Not Care About History, but History Cares About You."

      Now, we can only hope, that the Dem’s deranged positions on riots and Court-packing, scare enough Normies that they’ll turn out vs. the Dems anyway.
      Much may hinge on how much DJT talks about these deranged positions, instead of boasting about how well the Dow is doing.

      If he tries to make this election a referendum on the economy, he’ll be seen as treating the other stuff as being within the normal range of US history.
      If his Performance is the issue, he likely loses.
      If he can make the campaign as mainly about the dire danger the Dems’ deranged positions pose to *all* non-Dems, he wins in a walk.

  11. @Titan

    "Trump didn't help himself with his opening debate clown show. He put on display all the crap about his character people despise. Even now, he can't keep his mouth shut."

    I know many people share your concern.

    As for me, FWIW, I, too, wish Trump were better able to marshal the many excellent policy arguments in his favor without so often looking boorish, or worse.

    But, I have come to fully accept Trump with all of his faults. I would offer that Trump would not be Trump without his flaws. There is no one else I can think of who has been able to expose the dishonesty, corruption and hypocrisy of our Elites the way he has. I stand in awe of his courage, stamina, resolve...and even (amazing to say) his fundamental honesty. I will even venture to say that should he lose, he might well eventually have an even greater impact on exposing the truth. He may well turn out to be one of history's great tragic figures. In the meantime, he has my total support.


    A little off topic, but interesting.

    1. It's not actually OT at all. This has never been just about Barr. That Exec Order only says the other agencies are supposed to cooperate or coordinate with Barr--it doesn't give Barr any enforcement mechanism except to complain to the President.

    2. A little hopeium for Friday afternoon.

  13. does anyone think Barr and Durham want to make sure Trump wins the election? They may not want to be the next set of 'investigators' that gets investigated!

  14. Keith Olbermann’s comments are terrifying...

    Trumps supporters need to be purged from society?

    How can anyone wonder why shy Trump voters are real.

    1. Was Herr Olbermann sitting wrapped in the flag like the despicable scoundrel that he is?

      So how many anti-gun leftists are going to volunteer for Olbermann's army to purge the tens of millions of gun-owning Trump supporters?

  15. What will Durham think when Biden simply shuts down his investigation with no explanation offered and tosses years of meticulous work in the trash? Will he be thankful he didn't cut any corners? He's missing the forest for the trees because he can't see that the nature of the game has changed.

    1. Durham will go quietly back to CT, if he has any clue about how the nature of the game has changed.

  16. Excellent thread with many thought provoking responses.

    I would like to see Weiners laptops content released, without redactions, with the exception of child porn related items.

  17. Thoughts Mr Wauck?

    1. Of course I wish everything had come down by now, but this reaction is overblown. It presupposes, as I read it, that the lack of indictments is a political decision. But Barr hasn't said that, as I read it. Barr's saying, and Trump is saying, that they have a lot of evidence and are developing even more against ever bigger targets. And Durham is focused on that.

    2. Jas. Kunstler's theory about Durham's course:
      "... readers are cross-eyed to the point of nausea over the Barr-Durham investigation, especially the failure to deliver indictments before the election.
      Durham’s crew is methodically making a case, for the worst and largest seditious conspiracy in US history.
      It requires the most extreme care. They are not going to blow it, by allowing any *suspicion* that it is being used as a campaign *ploy*, on behalf of Mr. Trump."

      If the plan is, to tee off days after the voting ends, to impact (esp. elite) opinion during the court battles/ riots, I can sort of see it.

  18. Hi, new here but a long time followers of the rabbit holes people like Sundance and J.E. Dyer.

    First, lot of great writing here! A J.E. Dyer reader recommend the site, she wasn't lying about the quality of work.

    One thing I find disagreement in with this subject is the "rushing" scenario of throwing together a prosecution that fails in court.

    This delay just doesn't hold water for me especially when it comes to conspiracy cases. First and foremost if you have "a crime" and you have a "a criminal" you have those things or you do not.

    You build conspiracy cases from theory based in stepping through multiple criminal acts, but the over all conspiracy is a completely separate set of charges from the actual crime(s) committed. You often see them tacked on later or in stages from within other cases being developed along the way. It is also not uncommon to see additional charges brought after prosecutions are completed when the severity weights in enough.

    RICO and conspiracy often start with a group and grow in size but never you loose that underpinning criminal act that makes the individual a criminal before being considered part of the organizational aspect.

    This along with the Clinesmith filings( that sound like they were written on another planet). The lack of defense council grand jury complaints (I'm aware of the recent Russian server narratives) and the passing on multiple known prosecutable events... I just don't have the faith required to be optimistic.

    In the end, to actually break ground in this subject from a restoration stand point to the public Barr would be destroying 8-12 government agencies, many members of Congress, several intelligence subcontractors and several hundred individuals both foreign and domestic. His history of protecting the institutions of big government says he doesn't have the jewels.

    1. You don't know what you're talking about, but have a nice day anyway.

    2. Devilman, can you offer some specifics regarding Barr's supposed "history of protecting the institutions of big government"?

    3. Me thinks this is about Ruby Ridge.

      - TexasDude

    4. Mark; Debating ideas and opinions to me is a learning function and path to better understanding and analytics so please do not hesitate to take what I say apart if you like. I promise no offense would be taken and I wouldn't consider it adversarial. The sharing of ideas and variances of opinions is what make people think. As a person If im wrong I'm wrong and I'll say it, but if I'm right I expect equal treatment. Godwin's law need not apply, not every blog disagreement need be personal. (Don't faint)

      With Barr I just can't see a company man tearing his own DOJ apart and in this instance that is unavoidable. Thank you Sessions, Rosenstein and the SC.

      Then the Senate specifically the SSIC, SJC and HSGA, undeniable roles... I say Barr doesn't have the stones for it and if he did it would just about destroy our government. Case in point, James Wolfe and next up to bat Daniel Jones... I'm betting on a nice process crime at worse, 0-6 months like Clinesmith, no collateral will be given.

      Then the EOP, certainly the former but I'm saying Trump's staffing in the first 2 years were not actually Trump's staffing. This will be another "avoid at all costs".

      The 3 and 4 letter culprits NSC, USDS, CIA, FBI, ONA, ODNI and it's NCTC etc, etc AND etc. There is so much graymail to be had there that everything will become about protecting the institutions, not justice.

      Then the contractors, The Analysis Corporation, Fusion and whom knows yet. Most think Fusion was a think tank of some type and have paid no attention to Fusion's clearance, data access or their networks.

      Then the intelligence services AISE (Itay), ASI (Australia). M16 (British), FISU (Ukraine) and... I'll toss in Canada, not because I think they were involved its just because of their PM, he's a twinkie. The DOJ will avoid these agencies and their involvement like a plague. There goes a half dozen culpable parties related to Musfud, Halper.

      Anon- I know there are a number of ruby ridge theories out there but I don't particularly follow. I'm assuming / guessing you mean Barr's FTCB for the Dale Monroe / Lon Horiuch appeal. I personally would have hung them both but that's my opinion, Barr is entitled to his as well. The ultimate blame for that was with the 9th... What do you expect from that court? It should have gone to the SCOTUS.

      Barr for me would start with Iran Contra, the H.W. Bush pardoning party is the most talked about or maybe just the better known but Barr's advocacy for CIA document destruction in relation to Iran Contra (pre hearing) is more of a sticking point. Barr and William Casey to me seem to be a forgotten pair to history.

    5. 1. James Wolfe = red herring. Barr had no involvement, wasn't part of DoJ when that went down.

      Barr has, or used to have, some blind spots. 2nd amendment is probably one of them. LE is another.

      Barr's career in government has been devoted to defending the Executive from an imperial Dem Congress. That has put him on the wrong side at times, as with Ruby Ridge. However ...

      2. Ruby Ridge happened 35+ years ago. Barr has undoubtedly learned a LOT about the FBI during the past 30+ years, including that the FBI and the Intel agencies (at least their management) have definitely taken sides in the war against GOP presidents.

      3. Iran Contra was part of Barr's determination to defend--with people like John Yoo--commander in chief powers of the president against a Dem Congress attempting to dictate foreign policy. You can disagree with him and you can disagree with the policies, but he acted on his principles, not merely to cover things up, and definitely not because he lacked "stones".

      None of that has anything to do with Barr's willingness to defend the presidency against a Deep State cabal--Congress, USIC, FBI, MSM. Barr's loyalty is to the Unitary Executive, i.e., the constitutional institution of the presidency, against all comers. He absolutely has the "stones" to defend that constitutional institution and has proven that repeatedly. He is the only man for that job at this time.

  19. Paul Sperry tweet:

    >> <<

    "DEVELOPING: In ominous turn,#Spygate probe now operating from new case theory Clinton operatives (Sussman, Jones, Steele, Simpson +cyber experts) may have fed FBI falsified evidence (a crime) to frame Trump &FBI knew it was false but used it anyway to justify investigating Trump."

    The only part of this I would question is whether this is a "new" case theory for Durham.

    1. EXACTLY. Not new. This is how the outside of government crowd is drawn into the conspiracy case. Imagine the extent of financial and communication information Durham had to obtain--and don't imagine it only pertained to those named here. And then plowing through--even if the help of software, lots of judgment calls to be made. Yes, we're talking very big fish to be fried.

    2. Yeah, I was about to say there's nothing "new" about any of that.

  20. If we had a functional media, someone might ask Biden if he intends to terminate the investigations upon being elected.

  21. Or, if he will tolerate any sabotage (e.g. w/in DoJ) of the investigations, upon being elected.

  22. Perhaps try the Russian consulate in Miami again...

    Catherine Herridge: Full link 94-page declassified FBI spreadsheet, part of broader Bureau effort to corroborate Steele dossier ... On unverified, salacious Ritz allegations, FBI spreadsheet cites Steele's primary sub-source who was subject of 2009 FBI probe as possible NATSEC threat + Russian agent. Notes, "no confirmation that Trump stayed here. There is no 'Presidential Suite' currently listed on Ritz Carlton website." IG Horowitz faulted FBI over lack of corroboration + evidence of circular reporting. Full link here:

    1. "I've now read all 94 pages and there are only three options for how the FBI came up with such complete garbage..."

    2. Isn't he missing another alternative? That they're all totally corrupt idiots?