Appearing on Fox News Tuesday evening, former Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) claimed to have seen an FBI spreadsheet that used news articles and information from an ally to Hillary Clinton to corroborate the infamous “dossier” compiled by ex-British Intelligence officer Christopher Steele.
Gowdy made the explosive claim on “The Story With Martha MacCallum,” but didn’t elaborate, according to The Daily Caller’s Chuck Ross, who first reported the former congressman’s claims.
“I’ve seen the spreadsheet, Martha, I have seen each factual assertion listed in that dossier, and then I’ve seen the FBI’s justification. And when you’re citing newspaper articles as corroboration for a factual assertion that you have made, you don’t need an FBI agent to go do a Google search,” Gowdy said.
“When the name Sidney Blumenthal is included as part of your corroboration, and when you’re the world’s leading law enforcement agency, you have a problem,” the former congressman added.
Reminder: the news articles about the dossier were based on either information from Steele himself or from government officials “leaking” information they had been provided by Steele.
Another way the government “corroborated” the Steele Dossier was by using an eight-page document compiled by another Clinton operative — Cody Shearer. Parts of Shearer’s document appeared to be copied and pasted from the Steele Dossier — as the fonts change suddenly at times within the document.
As Ross reported, Blumenthal was responsible for spreading the Shearer document to media outlets and the federal government in an effort to corroborate Steele’s salacious report.
“Blumenthal provided Shearer’s reports to Jonathan Winer, a State Department official who was Steele’s main contact to the agency. Winer gave Shearer’s document to Steele, who in turn gave the document to the FBI. The Guardian reported Jan. 30, 2018, that Steele gave the FBI the Shearer information because he was asked to turn over any intelligence he had about Trump that might corroborate his own reporting,” Ross reported.
Special Counsel Robert Mueller and his team of investigators were not able to corroborate the core claims of the Steele Dossier, but that hasn’t resulted in any media outlets who reported on the dossier or information they received from Steele himself acknowledging they had been conned.
If what Gowdy says is true, it would confirm what skeptics of the Steele Dossier have long claimed: That circular reporting was used to justify spying on Trump’s 2016 campaign, and the whole thing was orchestrated by the Clinton campaign.
As Ross further noted, Gowdy left a few unanswered questions in his interview on Fox. Gowdy did not explain how the spreadsheet was used by the FBI or how the Blumenthal information, specifically, was used. He also didn’t explain whether this spreadsheet was used to justify the FBI’s surveillance warrant for Trump aide Carter Page or if it was created later, as part of the agency’s investigation into alleged Russian collusion by the Trump campaign.
Perhaps the investigation into the investigators will be able to unearth the spreadsheet and answer the questions left unanswered by Gowdy. Hopefully, the investigation will finally determine definitively that the Russia collusion narrative was a hoax.