Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) blasted Democrat presidential candidate Joe Biden on Wednesday after it was revealed that then-Vice President Biden had requested the unmasking of then-incoming national security adviser Michael Flynn.
“Today, I received the shocking answer that Vice President Biden and more than a dozen Obama administration officials requested and received the power to unmask General Flynn during his phone call with the Russian ambassador,” Paul said. “The fact that Vice President Biden and all of the president’s inner circle individually requested to unmask General Flynn is very troubling.”
“Unmasking involves revealing the identity of an American’s private phone conversation without a constitutional warrant, to eavesdrop on that conversation,” Paul continued. “What makes this even more troubling is that this American was a high-ranking adviser to an incoming president of the opposite party. This is incredibly troubling and shocking that the previous administration, under President Obama, under Vice President Biden’s specific instruction, was eavesdropping on an American, an American adviser to the next president.”
“There’s been much conjecture in recent days that President Obama was specifically directing this, we now know at the very least, Vice President Biden was in this up to his eyeballs,” Rand later added.
A reporter later brought up the notion that if a current U.S. president did this, it could be an impeachable offense and possibly a criminal offense, with which Paul agreed.
“This is about eavesdropping on your opponent and eavesdropping on the new president’s top advisers,” Paul continued. “The fact that Vice President Biden is directly involved with unmasking of a political opponent – think about it. You remember we went through this thing called impeachment? They said the president was using the government to go after a political opponent? This is Vice President Biden using the spying powers of the United States to go after a political opponent; he’s caught red-handed here. Vice President Biden is caught red-handed eavesdropping on a political opponent’s phone calls.”
“This is exactly what they were accusing President Trump of – he was acquitted on those charges,” Paul added. “They have now found that Vice President Biden is guilty of using government to go after a political opponent.”
It’s important to remember that the Department of Justice concluded that Flynn was the subject of an illegitimate investigation that was being carried out by the Obama administration.
Attorney General William Barr touched on this issue during an interview last week, saying:
I think a very important evidence here was that this was not a bona fide counterintelligence investigation – was that they were closing the investigation in December. They started that process. And on January 4th, they were closing it.
And that when they heard about the phone call, which is – the FBI had the transcripts too – there’s no question as to what was discussed. The FBI knew exactly what was discussed. And General Flynn, being the former director of the DIA, said to them, you know, “You listen, you listen to everything. You know, you know what was said.”
So there was no mystery about the call. But they initially tried some theories of how they could open another investigation, which didn’t fly. And then they found out that they had not technically closed the earlier investigation. And they kept it open for the express purpose of trying to catch, lay a perjury trap for General Flynn.
They didn’t warn him, the way we usually would be required by the Department. They bypassed the Justice Department. They bypassed the protocols at the White House and so forth. These were things that persuaded me that there was not a legitimate counterintelligence investigation going on.
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