Is Rosenstein’s End Game Approaching?

October 21, 2018 Updated: October 21, 2018

News broke on Oct. 19 that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein agreed to appear before both the House Judiciary and Government Oversight committees on Oct. 24, when he will testify under oath about the supposed “25th Amendment” wire rumor, among other topics.

Because this testimony is slated to be before only the chairmen and ranking members of the committees, several people who will be excluded from the hearing raised immediate objections. Reps. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), and Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) criticized—in the strongest terms—the decision to hold the hearing under those circumstances.   

In two earlier columns, “Rod Rosenstein: The Man With the Most Thankless Job in America” and “The Circus of Confusion and Chaos That Surrounds Rosenstein Is Deliberate,” I explained why the popular media narrative about Rosenstein is wrong.  

The popular media narrative is that Rosenstein is a key leader in an ongoing plot to sabotage President Donald Trump and maybe even impeach him. Jordan, Meadows, and Gaetz are strong public supporters of that narrative.

Even after Trump emerged from a private meeting on Air Force One to give Rosenstein a big thumbs up and say his job was safe, adherents to this narrative stuck with it, concluding that Trump is the world’s worst player at the game “Spot the Saboteur.” 

Rosenstein is overseeing investigations into the very people who are dropping many of the rumors targeting him in the news media. It’s the same people doing their tried-and-true strategic leaking tricks.

The source of the latest rumors targeting Rosenstein can be traced directly back to former FBI Deputy Director (and perhaps soon-to-be indicted) Andrew McCabe and former FBI general counsel James Baker, who was forced from that job in the wake of the Crossfire Hurricane scandal.

Is it any surprise that the same people that were fired/forced to quit/demoted under Rosenstein’s oversight of the Justice Department are now seeking to damage his credibility by spreading rumors about him?

Yet, it’s constantly being asserted that Rosenstein is a fellow conspirator with these plotters who are smearing him with these accusations; that somehow he’s still working in concert with James Comey, McCabe, Bruce and Nellie Ohr, and others as a key part of the Crossfire Hurricane plot, while these selfsame plotters are using their media contacts to strategically leak against him.

This is absurd nonsense.  

The anti-Rosenstein narrative is based on the myth, “Nothing is happening!” Nobody involved in the Crossfire Hurricane plot is being prosecuted, we’re told unceasingly, as if merely repeating this over and over makes it true. Just because nothing has been done out in the open, where everyone can see it, doesn’t mean nothing is happening.

It’s standard DOJ/FBI procedure to not even publicly acknowledge that an investigation is underway until it’s completed. And we’ve had plenty of examples of this in recent months.

Here are a few:

1. How many people knew there was a leak hunt going on inside the Senate itself, when the indictment of James Wolfe, former director of security for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, suddenly dropped like a bomb in the news media?

2. For months, people wondered if there was any real effort underway to discover exactly who it was that was leaking the financial records of Trump associates out of the Treasury Department, and then, the indictment of Treasury employee Natalie Edwards caught them all by complete surprise.

3. How many people knew that for more than six months, federal prosecutors were using a grand jury to build a case against Andrew McCabe?  In my column “The Silent Professionals,” I explained how absolutely stunning it was that not a single reporter in a town with a leak culture like Washington caught wind of the McCabe grand jury for half a year.

And yet after each one of these revelations, what happens? The same people who’ve been claiming for more than a year that “nothing is happening!” wait about five minutes before going right back to saying “nothing is happening!” If it isn’t public and being done in the open where they can see it, then it isn’t real.

Actually, plenty is happening. It’s just that the people doing these things aren’t phoning Sean or Laura or Tucker or anybody else and leaking to them about it. They have good, solid, professional reasons for keeping the probes under wraps and non-public until they are ready to move forward into the open.

Rosenstein’s thankless job for the past two years has been to hide all these investigations from the news media and from Congress until they are completed. Yes, you read that correctly. It’s his job to hide these investigations from Congress.

Why is that, you ask? Because members of Congress are under criminal investigation for illegally leaking classified information to the news media.

Last year, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said there would be an end to illegal leaking. He was dead serious about it and he meant it. To show how serious he was, Sessions announced the formation of a brand new FBI counterintelligence unit that would be tasked solely with tracking down and prosecuting leakers. Guess who Sessions put in charge of running the leak investigations that would result from the work of this new leak-hunting unit?  None other than Rosenstein, with an assist from FBI Director Christopher Wray.

Have members of Congress leaked classified information in the past year and a half?  Well, of course, they did. We all saw the resulting media stories that those leaks spawned. What does that mean? It means a new crack team of intrepid FBI leak-hunters has been tracking down and building cases against members of the U.S. Congress. This isn’t hard to figure out.

It’s assumed that nothing is being done to track down the leakers and prosecute them because none of the investigators or prosecutors are publicly talking about it. They certainly aren’t leaking to the media about the cases they are working on.

Just like for a year, it was assumed there must be no real effort underway to find out who was leaking classified financial records out of the Treasury Department. Natalie Edwards just found out the hard way that wasn’t the case. And several other people—whom I suspect will include members of the Congress and their top staff—are also going to find out the hard way that isn’t the case.

Brian Cates is a political pundit and writer based in South Texas and the author of “Nobody Asked for My Opinion … But Here It Is Anyway!”

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.