Did the Page FISA applications omit?

There are two sides arguing in mainstream and alternative media. One side says the FISA applications to surveil Carter Page omitted the fact that the “Dirty Dossier” was paid for, in part, by the Clinton campaign. The other side says the release of the (redacted) applications shows there were no omissions. So, was Clinton funding omitted or not?

There was a footnote explaining that, which from what I’ve read was about a one-page long footnote. So no, it was not omitted, even though I would consider it barely relevant.

I read the footnote, and did not see the name Clinton. If I read the wrong text, please post or provide a link to the correct text containing the name Clinton.

It said something like that the investigation was funded by the political opposition to Political Candidate #1. it doesn’t even use Trump’s name; why should it use Clinton’s?

I don’t think the application meaningfully disclosed the nature of the reliance on the dossier.

But I don’t think it needed to. (Unless there is some heightened scrutiny involving FISA warrants that escapes me). The analysis is: if you remove the dossier evidence, does the warrant still contain sufficient strength to justify the surveillance? Answer, in my view, is ‘yes.’ So while there may be some practices that DOJ should revise as a matter of good government, the investigation is not legally, in my opinion, legally compromised by the dossier info.

Why would that be relevant when the report was originally funded by a conservative political group? I suppose both pieces of information should have been included but they amount to a wash.


“Readers will search the FISA application in vain for any specific mention of the DNC, Clinton campaign, or any party/campaign funding of the dossier.

Democrats argue that the FISA Court judges should have been able to figure out, from that obscure description, that the DNC and Clinton campaign paid for the dossier. That seems a pretty weak argument, but in any case, the Nunes memo’s statement that the FISA application did not disclose or reference the role of the DNC and the Clinton campaign is undeniably true.”

Yeah, but they didn’t remove it.

Wasn’t the conservative group a primary challenger? How is it a wash? They were both Trump oponents.

Was the opposition limited to Clinton, or were there other persons or organizations opposing Trump?

So what?

What legal relevance do you believe that fact has?

Detective Smith submits an application for a search warrant, listing items he expects to find at 77 Sunset Strip that are being used to further narcotics trafficking. The accompanying affidavit says:

For the purpose of showing probable cause that a crime has been or is being committed and that the above described items exist and are located at the above described place, Affiant states the following facts which he has reasonable grounds to believe and does believe to be true:

(1) Your Affiant is a police detective employed by the county of Exampledonia, with fourteen years experience in the field of narcotics investigation.

(2) Richard Roe, of 77 Sunset Strip, provided your Affiant with photographs which he stated were taken by his cellphone camera in the basement of 77 Sunset Strip on [a date two days ago].

(3) These photographs appear to show plastic baggies, a large quantity of white powder, and a digital scale.

(4) Roe says that he rents his basement to a tenant, John Q Doe.

(5) Based on your Affiant’s knowledge, training, and experience, the presence of plastic baggies, a large quantity of white powder, and a digital scale are indications of the use and sale of controlled substances.

(6) Your Affiant was also approached independently by Sally Boe, who related that she entered the fenced back yard of 77 Sunset Strip, opened the unlocked the basement door, and observed a stack of plastic bags tightly packed with white powder and three semiautomatic pistols on a table in view of the basement door.

(7) Based on your Affiant’s knowledge, training, and experience, the presence of plastic bags tightly packed with white powder and multiple firearms is a strong indication of the sale of controlled substances.

No argument, I assume, that this is legally sufficient to support probable cause for a search warrant?

Now let’s imagine the warrant is executed, and in fact a large quantity of controlled substances and firearms are seized – and then that we later learn that Sally Boe is the vengeful ex-wife of John Q Doe, the basement tenant – and that Detective Smith knew this, but did not mention the fact in the warrant affidavit.

Jim Peebles – what, in your understanding of the law, does that revelation do to the validity of the search warrant?

In the off chance that he doesn’t answer, can you (or someone) provide what the current correct answer is to that question?

Dude! You are old!

Well, you got the reference.


Sure. . . but I already sort of did, in post 5:

A challenge to a search warrant of that nature is resolved by the reviewing court asking, “If the offending material were removed, does the warrant still support a finding of probable cause?”

The answer for poor ol’ JQ Doe is yes: even if the vengeful ex-wife’s information is removed from the affidavit, the photograph taken by landlord Richard independently provides probable cause. So the warrant would not be likely to be quashed even if Detective Smith knew that the ex-wife evidence was fatally biased.

Cool, thanks!

I am not a lawyer, but it is my understanding a warrant application NEEDS to include any known info which might potentially cause it to be denied. And I further gather that this is especially true in the secretive FISA court because of the extra imbalance between investigator and investigated. Can any lawyers, or motivated non-lawyers, provide the textbook analysis of my two impressions above about how warrant applications are supposed to work?

Clinton was a source, and Trump wasn’t. The point of the application is to establish the credibility of the information, and an integral part of that is identifying the sources sufficiently so that the court can consider their motivations.

On this point, what the FBI actually said was that Simpson of GPS Fusion was hired by a law firm and that “the FBI speculates” that he was “likely” looking for information to discredit Candidate #1. That certainly understates the FBI’s level of knowledge; I’m pretty sure that the FBI knew that the law firm had been retained by the Clinton campaign and the DNC, and it did not disclose this information to the court. Moreover, given the FBI’s knowledge of GPS Fusion’s ultimate clients, saying that they could only “speculate” that Simpson’s motives were political seems omissive.

There were other potentially misleading points as well. The applications are each labeled as a “Verified Application.” The FBI did not independently verify any of Steele’s conclusions, however, but I’m not necessarily sure if the court would have assumed from the label that it had.

Also, I think the application indicates that Page was under FBI scrutiny since 2013 but does not indicate that he was a cooperating informant for the FBI at that time.

This is a different point. I’m not aware of any evidence other than the Steele dossier used to support the warrant, so I can’t address what Bricker is thinking of. I don’t believe that the unredacted portion of the application that was recently released sets forth any evidence other than the Steele dossier.

This point does call to mind another omission, however. The application cited an article by Michael Isikoff as independent corroboration of the Steele allegations, but at least by the time of the renewals of the application, it was known that Steele was the source of the Isikoff article. The FBI should have stopped characterizing that article as corroboration.

This has long since been refuted. GPS Fusion had originally been retained by a GOP primary opponent but did not retain Steele at that time. GPS Fusion only retained Steele and began compiling the dossier after it was hired by the DNC and the Clinton campaign.

Shouldn’t point 6 read something like “Sally Boe, who related that she entered the fenced back yard of 77 Sunset Strip with the intent of obtaining incriminating material on John Q Doe” to be more like the Page application?