Fox is running with this big story:
But is it that simple?
Trump's twitter feed is a mess, hard to follow this story, but ...
That SOUNDS like all the Russia Hoax documents are now declassified. But wait ... what Trump actually says is that he has authorized their declassification. Which means, they haven't actually all been declassified. Some may be declassified, but others--while their declassification has been authorized--probably have yet to go through the actual declassification process.
And so John Ratcliffe said today:
"Today, at the direction of President Trump, I declassified additional documents relevant to ongoing Congressional oversight and investigative activities."
Doesn't that sound like President Trump, just today, directed--not authorized--the actual declassification of Brennan's notes and the CIA referral to the FBI? Which means they weren't previously declassified. I can think of a number of explanations, but none conclusive.
And meanwhile we're hearing that Gina Haspel at CIA is blocking specific declassifications--which have, presumably been "authorized" by Trump.
Trump does sound frustrated--he wants prosecutions yesterday, he says. But anyone who knows anything about preparing prosecutions of complex conspiracies--and, look, Trump is a smart guy, so he knows this--knows that can't happen overnight:
So, if I understand why Trump is quoting this Sperry tweet, he's saying he doesn't care about revealing state secrets. Me? I'm up for reading some state secrets. Let's do it!
But in the last analysis, if Trump thinks the process is taking too long and he doesn't mind revealing some state secrets, HE's the guy who can make it happen. Will he or won't he?
It sounds to me as if Trump is doing what he does so well. Reality politics. I think we'll need to wait a bit still to see what comes of it. In the meantime, we can wonder whether Biden wants to back out of the next debate because of these revelations--especially the implication that Biden himself was probably in on the hoax. As well as his close adviser Jake Sullivan.
REMINDER: This is exactly why I spent some time--just yesterday--going over what is actually said in the Executive Order, dated May 23, 2019, in which Trump supposedly gave all declassification authority to AG Barr. Only if you read the order, Trump didn't actually do that. The order is aptly titled: Memorandum on Agency Cooperation with Attorney General’s Review of Intelligence Activities Relating to the 2016 Presidential Campaigns. It just ain't as simple as Trump is making out in his tweets, and he knows that. He's not dumb. He has his reasons and one day we'll figure it out.
And I can't resist this tweet, poking fun at the way Paul Sperry "breaks" stories that have been out for months: