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Mak writes: "The former British intelligence officer who authored the infamous Russia dossier wanted to show it to the FBI because he was concerned that then-presidential candidate Donald Trump was being 'blackmailed.'"

Senator Dianne Feinstein. (photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images)
Senator Dianne Feinstein. (photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images)

Feinstein Dumps Entire Fusion GPS Transcripts

By Tim Mak, NPR

09 January 18


he former British intelligence officer who authored the infamous Russia dossier wanted to show it to the FBI because he was concerned that then-presidential candidate Donald Trump was being "blackmailed."

Christopher Steele told the political research firm that hired him, Fusion GPS, that what he uncovered from Russian sources was serious enough to bring to the attention of U.S. law enforcement authorities, according to a transcript released on Tuesday.

The transcript, of an interview that Fusion GPS founder Glenn Simpson did with the Senate Judiciary Committee, was released on Tuesday by the committee's top Democrat, Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California.

Steele went to the FBI with the initial reports that would later form the dossier on alleged Trump-Russia ties as early as late June or early July of 2016, Simpson testified.

"Chris said he was very concerned about whether this represented a national security threat and said ... he thought we were obligated to tell someone in government," Simpson told the Senate Judiciary Committee.

"He thought from his perspective there was ... a security issue about whether a presidential candidate was being blackmailed."

Simpson said he neither encouraged nor discouraged Steele about going to the FBI.

"This was like, you know, you're driving to work and you see something happen and you call 911," Simpson told investigators. He likened the sense of responsibility he said Steele felt to the professional duties that attorneys have in some cases to report a crime if they learn of one.

Steele eventually met with an FBI legal attache in Rome in September 2016, more than two months after the initial outreach.

Steele later told to Simpson that he believed the FBI would consider his information credible because the Bureau had corroborating intelligence, including from a human source within the Trump organization.

Simpson did not identify the source in his Judiciary Committee testimony.

But in the late stages of the 2016 presidential campaign, Steele broke off with the FBI, Simpson said, because he did not believe it was taking him seriously enough.

One reason, according to Simpson, was a story in The New York Times on Oct. 31, 2016 that said the FBI hadn't found any connections between Trump world and the Russian attack on the election.

"I understand Chris severed his relationship with the FBI out of concern that he didn't know what was happening inside the FBI and there was a concern that the FBI was being manipulated for political ends by the Trump people," Simpson told the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Simpson gave testimony before the committee in August. The former reporter for the Wall Street Journal commissioned what proved to be Steele's salacious — and unproven — dossier on Trump's alleged ties to Russia.

NPR has not detailed the material contained in the dossier because it remains unverified, but it describes a concerted effort by powerful Russians to cultivate a relationship with Trump and his camp. It also describes lascivious behavior that might embarrass Trump or could have been used as leverage to influence him.

Fusion GPS was first hired in 2015 by a conservative donor to investigate Trump's background in the early stages of the Republican presidential nominating process. Later, as Trump's pathway to the Republican nomination became more assured, the firm was hired by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee to continue that research.

As part of that research, Fusion GPS hired Steele, who had been the head of MI6's Russia desk.

The resulting memos, written over the summer and fall of 2016, were explosive: They alleged that the Russian government had compromising material on the president and that Trump's campaign colluded with Russia to defeat Clinton during the presidential elections.

Simpson has testified for more than 20 hours before three congressional committees regarding his firm's role in commissioning the report. On Jan. 2, Simpson and fellow Fusion GPS co-founder Peter Fritsch called on congressional investigators to release their testimony. your social media marketing partner


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+49 # Farafalla 2018-01-09 14:34
Well done Diane. Now if only she were to stop saying that Trump is not impeachable.
+2 # ericlipps 2018-01-09 15:50
Quoting Farafalla:
Well done Diane. Now if only she were to stop saying that Trump is not impeachable.

Impeaching the Rump would only bring Mike Pence into the White House. I'm not sure that would be an improvement.
0 # Diane_Wilkinson_Trefethen_aka_tref 2018-01-10 14:02
Quoting ericlipps:

Impeaching the Rump would only bring Mike Pence into the White House. I'm not sure that would be an improvement.Yea h it would. He would make decisions based on his narrow-minded views of the world, not because he is mentally unhinged. That means his decisions would be subject to RATIONAL attacks and since much of his belief system is religiously motivated he could be more easily impeached for violating the Constitution.
+1 # Robbee 2018-01-11 17:51
Quoting Diane_Wilkinson_Trefethen_aka_tref:
since much of his belief system is religiously motivated he could be more easily impeached for violating the Constitution.

- that'll be the day! when a christian prez in america gets impeached for trying to link the church and the state!

good luck and merry christmas!

i'll take my chances on getting dickhead and pence for treason, lying to the fib and obstruction of justice, sorry!
+5 # bread and butter 2018-01-11 08:50
Typical DNC Democrat. Do you want to do anything about his or not? It amazes me how many DNC Democrats would rather let an obviously deranged Republican continue to endanger our entire country, simply to further a political agenda.

+58 # DennisCMyers 2018-01-09 14:44
Terrible headline. The original NPR headline on this piece was "Fusion GPS Founder's Senate Judiciary Testimony Released". The RSN headline, "Feinstein Dumps Entire Fusion GPS Transcripts," makes it sound like Feinstein is dropping any consideration of the dossier in committee deliberations. Information was being released, not dropped or dumped.
+58 # caphillprof 2018-01-09 14:46
I think most of the dossier is PROVEN, that the only part unproven is that we lack photos of Trumps sexual activities with Russian prostitutes which constitute some of the blackmail that Mother Russia has over the "very stable genius" in the White House.
-10 # 2018-01-09 19:19
As is the Russian propaganda routine, the dossier is a mixture of true facts (e.g., Yes, Vladimir Putin is President of the Russian Federation) and false allegations -- sometimes subtle and sometimes obviously false. In this particular case, a number of "subtler" points in the dossier have been shown to be false (e.g., Michael Cohen did not meet with Kremlin agents in Prague -- his passport shows he has never even visited Prague) and the most salacious material is obviously false -- Trump is a well-known lifelong germophobe.

I didn't vote for Trump and I disapprove of much of what he has done but I have a brain and I knew the minute I read he document that it was flaky and untrue document. Too bad the FISA court and so many democrats appear to lack any judgment on this matter.

Lee Nason
New Bedford, Massachusetts
+11 # Working Class 2018-01-10 11:42
Hey Lee - guess what I visited Prague this summer, along with Hungary, Germany and Austria. I flew into the Netherlands and traveled through Europe from there. The only stamp in my passport is from The Netherlands. Got anymore "proof" for us? Personally I will wait to see what the FBI and Special Counsel determines what is true and what is false when it comes to the Steele dossier. But hey thanks for your uniformed conclusions just the same.
+42 # bardphile 2018-01-09 15:00
Well! Chalk one up for DF!
+4 # MidwestDick 2018-01-09 18:16
Isn't she running this year? Or is that 2020?
And was there some question about her being too accommodating to conservatives?
The people spoke, she listened! Yay!
+5 # CDMR 2018-01-09 15:33
So Steele went to the FBI. does this mean McCain lied about giving the dossier to the FBI.
+6 # Gootarama 2018-01-09 16:11
Our "Very Stable Genius", is acting more like a "Loose Cannon Moron"......... you were right Rex!!!
-3 # MitchelCohen 2018-01-09 16:12
One question is: Is a sociopath blackmailable?
Anothe question is: This all started with claims that Russia had hacked into the U.S. election machines. Where's the evidence?

I'd surmise that Trump would be proud of sexual and other claims made against him.

The bait and switch continues.
0 # yolo 2018-01-10 13:47
Wasn't this congressional investigation to determine if the Russian government and Putin himself interfered in the US election? Where in the dossier does it show that Putin or the Russian government interfered in the elections? If this dossier is true and Trump had illegal dealings with Russian oligarchs, than what this dossier shows is the incompetence of our own criminal and intelligence community in not vetting Trump before granting him all the security clearances needed to be the president of our country.
+1 # Texas Aggie 2018-01-10 16:49
What makes you think that the FBI didn't vet drumpf? They already had an investigation going before they got the Steele papers, and they knew that the Russians had hacked some of the state voter registration lists and were using them as guidelines for their targeted Facebook and Google fake advertisements. How exactly was the intelligence community not going to grant him security clearances?

Too many knot heads had voted for him in the wrong places, and the intelligence community did in fact try to push back against giving him any potentially dangerous information, as you must remember.
+1 # yolo 2018-01-11 12:08
If you assume the FBI vetted Trump than you would also have to assume they found nothing illegal in his dealings. If the FBI or the CIA had, they would have brought criminal charges against him. To find out now a year after Trump has become president that he did illegal stuff before he became president, it only proves my point that Trump wasn't vetted very well. And the only knot heads are both Hillary and Trump. If Hillary had won, instead of Trump taunting N. Korea, Hillary would have been taunting Putin and Iran, while over throwing Assad. None of which is in the interests of the US but are in the interests of the Israelis.
+2 # meyersjoel 2018-01-10 18:59
The current inquisition is reminiscent of the Alger Hiss and Rosenbergs trials. Even with their renunciation of "communism", the Russophobia escalates. The establishment goes after Trump, who is totally monstrous in every other issue, on the basis that he said NO to World War III, for the time being, while Killery called for shooting Russian planes over Syria and engineered an anti-Russian coup in Ukraine, and refuses to rule out use of force to kick Russia out of Crimea. And did anyone notice that hiring British spy Steele, head of the Anti-Russia Desk of British intelligence is colluding with a foreign power, the UK, to influence the U.S. election? Don't Israeli-driven neo-Cons blatantly interfere with that foreign power, even running the Bush-Cheney-Adm inistration into invading and occupying Iraq and Afghanistan? And that, after a stolen election centering on Florida, with many absentee ballots pouring in from Israel and then doctored and edited on arrival? Is it better if the "domestic" political police, including Mueller, the CIA, etc., can veto election results to replace Trump with, say, Pence? Finally, all these Kings Horses and Kings Men (excluding gender implications) have not come up with a shred of evidence to support their allegations of Russian hacking of U.S. elections, nothing similar for example to Americans staffing the leadership of the Eltsin's "election?
+1 # tpmco 2018-01-11 04:21
The transcript was about a 9 hour read, but there are a couple shocking sections--pages 138-180 and final 20 pages or so under Sawyer's examination.

After awhile, it became apparent how politically charged this issue of the dossier is with the Republican Grassley's lawyers constantly going outside the parameters of the interview and their incessant conflation and obfuscation of issues that Mr. Simpson had worked on.

it also became apparent how incompetent the FBI has been in all of this--and the Congress. Leaves me wondering. But one thing that didn't get talked about in any serious way was the supposed hacking. I still don't see any there, there.

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