President Trump quoted Rush Limbaugh on Twitter Thursday morning, wondering why, if the FBI was concerned that Russians might be infiltrating the campaign, did they not inform the candidate:
RUSH LIMBAUGH “If the FBI was so concerned, and if they weren’t targeting Trump, they should have told Trump. If they were really concerned about the Russians infiltrating a campaign (hoax), then why not try to stop it? Why not tell Trump? Because they were pushing this scam.”— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 31, 2018
Transcript via RushLimbaugh.com:
RUSH: Let’s go to the Trey Gowdy sound bites. We’re gonna start here with Fox News last night. Trey Gowdy is on the network to talk about the Department of Justice briefing last week on whether or not there was an informant in the Trump campaign. Question: “Anything that you can share on a broad scale about what went down there?”
GOWDY: It was President Trump himself who said, number one, “I didn’t collude with Russia, but if anyone connected with my campaign did, I want the FBI to find that out.” It looks to me like the FBI was doing what President Trump said I want you to do. Find it out. He’s not the target. Chris Wray and Rod Rosenstein have at least made it clear to us, Donald Trump was never the target of the investigation. He’s not the current target of the investigation.
RUSH: All right. Now, one thing to keep in mind here, and this may surprise some of you, Trey Gowdy has never met Donald Trump. Trey Gowdy’s never talked with Donald Trump. Another way of saying that is, Donald Trump has never spoken with Trey Gowdy. Donald Trump has never met Trey Gowdy. So here is the next bite. And the question, “Okay, that point of view you’re talking about right now, was that strengthened when you went into this briefing last week, everything that you saw?”
GOWDY: Yes. I am even more convinced that the FBI did exactly what my fellow citizens would want them to do when they got the information they got and that it has nothing to do with Donald Trump.
RUSH: Okay. I know exactly what this is. And I have to tell you, I have some questions. I think to get where I want to go, let me give you something else that Gowdy said on CBS This Morning yesterday. No, wait a minute. What day is it? Is this Wednesday or Thursday? Okay, so he said it today. You know, you miss Monday, and you wonder what day it is sometimes. Okay. This is Wednesday. So it was this morning.
Gowdy said, “When the FBI comes into contact with information about what a foreign government may be doing in our election cycle, I think they have an obligation to run it out. Based on what I’ve seen, I don’t know what the FBI could have done or should have done other than run out a lead that somebody loosely connected with the campaign was making assertions about Russia. I would think you would want the FBI to find out whether there was any validity to what these people are saying.”
I like Trey Gowdy. I have interviewed Trey Gowdy for The Limbaugh Letter. I have nothing but praise for him. But, sadly, do you know what he’s talking about here? And I knew this was gonna happen. I even predicted it was gonna happen. I predicted that the FBI, the DOJ, and the Clappers and the Brennans would try to rely on the idea that George Papadopoulos was telling people that he knew that the Russians had Hillary emails, that they would use that as justification for having an informant in the campaign. That and Carter Page.
Now, you in this audience know that Papadopoulos didn’t know anything on his own. The Trump did not know that the Russians had Hillary Clinton emails. To this day nobody knows whether that’s true. Again, a man named Joseph Mifsud in April of 2016, he’s an associate of the FBI informant Stefan Halper. He’s nowhere to be found, by the way.
He’s a Maltese academic. And he put the word in Papadopoulos’ mind that there were Hillary Clinton emails that the Russians had, thousands of them. Later the same year Halper offers Papadopoulos a speaking engagement and an opportunity to write a paper on energy concerns in Turkey, Cyprus, and Israel.
He asked him to come to Europe, deliver the paper, and paid $3,000 plus travel expenses. Papadopoulos does. During that period of time, the FBI informant says to Papadopoulos, “George, you remember the Russians and those thousands of Hillary emails that they have?” So now two people have told Papadopoulos that the Russians have thousands of Hillary Clinton emails. The third step in this little scam is a drinking event at a bar arranged by Halper where Papadopoulos meets the Australian ambassador.
He happens to be a $25 million bundler, donor to the Clintons. Alexander Downer. At this bar Papadopoulos, after getting a little liquored up, happens to start bragging that he knows that the Russians have thousands of Hillary emails — after Mifsud told him and after Halper told him! Downer then runs back to whoever his contacts are and says, “Hey, I got somebody here in the Trump campaign saying that they know the Russians have Hillary’s emails!” Well, Papadopoulos doesn’t know anything.
Apparently, what Gowdy is seeing here is only that Papadopoulos told the Australian ambassador that the Trump campaign knew the Hillary campaign’s emails were in the hands of Russians. How does Gowdy not know how Papa…? And Carter Page is the other person that they were running, trying to get him filled with information. In other words, all this information about the Russians was planted in the Trump campaign by this informant and one of his buddies.
But when Gowdy says, “When the FBI comes into contact with information about what a foreign government may be doing in our election cycle, I think they have an obligation to run it out. Based on what I have seen, I don’t know what the FBI could have done or should have done other than run out a lead that someone loosely connected with the campaign was making assertions about Russia…”
That’s Papadopoulos. Papadopoulos didn’t know anything until it was planted! Certainly, Gowdy knows that. Maybe he doesn’t believe that’s true. Maybe the FBI told him that that story about Papadopoulos and Halper is all BS; that Papadopoulos did know it independently. But this is a key element of this whole thing that it appears, as I thought it would be, is being ignored.
RUSH: Man, this is deeply troubling to me. I have to tell you. I guess it’s understandable, but it’s just deeply troubling.
RUSH: Okay. Look, folks, the Trey Gowdy situation. I don’t mind admitting this bothers me greatly. I don’t know Trey Gowdy that well. I mean, I’ve spoken to him interviewing him for The Limbaugh Letter. I’ve admired him. I have thought that he’s gutsy and courageous. He’s chaired a bunch of congressional committees — Benghazi, for one. He is close friends with some people I know and trust immensely. But I’m just… I’m really puzzled over this. I’m…
Well, I’m actually not puzzled by it. I think I know exactly what’s going on here. I just don’t want to say it with ontological certitude on this. But I think I’ve got a pretty good idea what’s going on here. I want to go back and read to you what Gowdy said this morning on CBS. I want to reset the table, because I’m sure that most of you have heard my in-depth explanation of how Carter Page and Papadopoulos were used by these informants or spies, by British intelligence and the DOJ, FBI. Well, hell, the entire U.S. intelligence service. Brennan and Clapper are in on this too.
You’ve heard Sam Clovis — Sam Clovis, who was in the Trump campaign, the transition and the administration until shortly ago — say that Stefan Halper approached him and wanted an entree to George Papadopoulos and then wanted to be hired in the Trump campaign foreign policy establishment. He was clearly reporting back to the FBI. Clovis sent him away without hiring him and without providing him the information that he wanted. So all of this is widely known. I mean, it’s easily discovered.
And the idea that the FBI really thought that George Papadopoulos knew independently that the Russians…? Papadopoulos to this day doesn’t know it. Nobody knows it! Nobody knows whether the Russians have Hillary’s emails, and the only reason Papadopoulos was talking about it was because the FBI’s informants and employees fed him the information. He’s a peripheral player. Trump never even met him, maybe once for 10 minutes at a cocktail party.
He never advised Trump on foreign policy. That’s why he was chosen! He was 24 it years old. They were puffing the guy up, making him feel like he was an integral part and a big player in all this. He’s meeting all these highbrow, top-notch intelligence people from the U.K.? I mean, this is easy to see what happened here. So obviously, what happened is that Gowdy and the rest of this group go up to the FBI and Rosenstein and Christopher Wray and said, “Well, look.
“When this Papadopoulos guy’s with the Trump campaign and he starts talking about knowing that the Russians have 30,000 emails, what are we supposed to do with that? We had to do something!” That’s what the FBI’s telling them. Even though the FBI planted the story! Same thing with Carter Page. Carter Page makes a speech in Moscow, and they use that to say, “Oh, my God, we gotta investigate this guy!
“He’s got contacts with Russia. He’s in the Trump campaign. Oh, my God, he might be… Oh, my God, the Russians might be using him!” Those two guys — and the basis of that, people are accepting the FBI’s explanation of why they needed to spy not on Trump but on…? Clapper’s absolutely loathsome, phony little explanation for what goes on now has been adopted by Trey Gowdy? That they weren’t spying on Trump, they were spying on the Russians?
(scoffs) Good grief. Let me try to refute that in a couple of ways here. If the FBI was really concerned about Russian meddling, why wouldn’t they have asked about it? Put yourself in the position of the FBI here and let’s make like this is legit. You learn that a peripheral foreign policy person, 24 years old in the Trump campaign, George Papadopoulos, is over in London telling people from Australia and everywhere else that he knows that the Russians have thousands of Hillary’s emails. And, by the way, everybody on earth has been looking for ’em.
Hillary had 60,000 emails on her illegal server. She deleted 30,000, she said, and turned over 30,000 to the DOJ. It’s the missing 30,000 we’re talking about here. Nobody knows where they are, but they are somewhere, because nothing is ever fully deleted, even if you use BleachBit, because those emails were backed up in the Cloud somewhere. Somebody has them. But nobody knows who. So you’re the FBI, and you hear this kid Papadopoulos — sorry, young man Papadopoulos — is out telling people in London that the Russians have ’em.
And you say, “Oh, my God, and he’s in the Trump campaign? Oh, jeez. The Trump campaign no. Oh. Russians! Oh, we’ve gotta look in.” Why wouldn’t you…? If you were the FBI, why wouldn’t you go to somebody in the Trump campaign and ask? Why wouldn’t you advise the Trump campaign? Why wouldn’t you go to Trump himself or as close to him as you could get and say, “Look, one of your people is saying…”? Instead, the informants only asked if the Trump campaign had Hillary’s emails.
If the FBI was so concerned, and if they weren’t targeting Trump, they should have told Trump! If they’re really concerned about the Russians infiltrating a campaign, then why not try to stop it? Why not tell Trump? Well, the answer’s perfectly clear, to me. They were running this whole story! They were pushing this scam! If they’re concerned with the Russians infiltrating the Trump campaign, with everything they knew… Don’t forget, the FBI knew that the Hillary campaign had paid for that dossier!
They knew that it was phony. They knew that it wasn’t real intel, and they took it to the FISA court to get a warrant to spy on people based on it, and they knew it was fake. They knew it wasn’t really Russian intel. But if they still feel… If after all of that, they still think the Russians actually have infiltrated, then why not put a similar spy in the Hillary campaign? Because, look, everybody thought Hillary was gonna win. At this stage and up to election night, everybody thought Hillary was gonna win.
And the Russians are always going to tamper with the projected winner. They’re not gonna waste time on who everybody thinks is gonna lose. Except if you’re concocting this phony BS that they’re working with the Trump campaign to steal the election, which is not possible. So, there’s no spy or informant in the Hillary campaign, despite that it’s her emails that are missing! And despite the fact that people are saying the Russians have them! Why the hell wouldn’t you have somebody in the Hillary campaign trying to dig and flesh that out?
Why only the Trump campaign? Third. If the FBI was worried about Russian interference, why didn’t they really examine…? More than just put a spy in the Hillary campaign, why not really examine it, because of the fact they knew that the dossier was put together with the help of Russian spies? If they were so concerned about Russian meddling, why did they offer to pay Christopher Steele $50,000 to pay the Russian government agents for more dirt?
Even after the dossier was exposed for what it was, the FBI kept paying Steele! And if they’re worried about Russian meddling — and this is the big one to me. If they’re worried about Russian meddling, then why didn’t they insist on being able to examine the Democrat National Committee computer network and servers? Because the Democrats are running around — everybody said the Russians had hacked ’em. So why only the Trump campaign? Why only deploy informants, spies, lookouts in the Trump campaign?
Why only try to find Russians in the Trump campaign? Why not try to find Russians in the DNC server? Why not try to find Russians in the Hillary campaign? Because, you see, the FBI and everybody knew they had planted this story with Papadopoulos. Does Gowdy not know this? Or does he know it and reject it? Does he not believe it? And I’m only asking these questions based on what Congressman Gowdy said on CBS today.
He said, “Based on what I have seen, I don’t know what the FBI could have done or should have done other than run out a lead that someone loosely connected with the campaign was making assertions about Russia.” Well, now, that has to be Papadopoulos and his story the Russians had thousands of Hillary emails. He then said, “the fact that two people who were loosely connected –” that’s Page and Papadopoulos “– the fact that two people were loosely connected to the Trump campaign may have been involved doesn’t diminish the fact that Russia was the target and not the campaign.”
Again, repetition is necessary for people to understand things. George Papadopoulos is minding his own business one day. He’s not doing anything to anybody. He’s 24 years old, he’s a bright guy, got hired by the campaign on the foreign policy team peripherally. He’s never met Trump, maybe for 10 minutes, but is not a close confidant. At this point in time Trump’s foreign policy in his campaign is not even formed yet because Trump’s foreign policy is Trump, so he’s just gotta pick some names to put on a list, and Papadopoulos’ name gets chosen.
And in April of 2016, this kid, Papadopoulos, hears from a professor, Maltese professor and academic names Joseph Mifsud, just out of the blue, who says he wants to get to know him. (imitating Misfud) “I understand you’re on the Trump campaign, this is great, young man like you, you’re probably going places.” By the way, have you heard that the Russians, do you guys on the campaign know that the Russians have a whole bunch of Hillary emails? Just throw it in as an inconsequential part of the conversation.
You’re talking to the young guy, you’re telling him how fortunate he is, how great it is to meet him, like to meet him in person one day, what have you. By the way, you know the Russians have got Hillary’s emails, right? Papadopoulos says, “What?” Nothing happens for a couple months, and then he gets the offer from Halper to come to London, deliver a paper, be paid $3,000 for it. Halper says, “George, you remember the Russians have all those Hillary emails, right?”
Papadopoulos acknowledges being suspicious about it ’cause these things come out of the clear blue. And then it’s arranged for Papadopoulos to meet the Australian ambassador, Alexander Downer, and they go to a bar in London and Papadopoulos starts consuming adult beverages, loose lips happen, and he tells the ambassador, starts bragging, “By the way, the Russians, they got a bunch of Hillary emails.”
He’s wanting to sound like a big guy. He thinks he’s got inside information. It’s information that was planted in him. It’s not information the Trump campaign knew. So the entrapment, if you will, is complete. They have snared Papadopoulos. The Australian ambassador calls whoever at the FBI and says, “Okay. We got it. We got a Trump campaign guy here who just told me last night that the Russians have thousands of Hillary’s emails.” And that’s it.
So the FBI then ignores an MI6 and MI5, they ignore the fact that all this was implanted with Papadopoulos, and they report “Trump campaign aide confirms Russia in possession of thousands of Hillary emails.” That then is used to open the informant or spy campaign on the Trump campaign? And that’s what Gowdy saw? Says, “Well, hey, if you see that, I mean, they gotta follow that lead.”
And it’s not just me. Remember, it’s the Washington Post and the New York Times who first started writing about this informant. I told you the story when this happened. I saw that Washington Post story followed by the Kimberley Strassel column in the Wall Street Journal, and that’s when I started doing my own digging and discovered the name of informant, Stefan Halper, and how all this with Papadopoulos happened.
But even without that, the questions I asked, if they’re really concerned about the Russians being involved, why not demand the Democrat server, why not put somebody inside the Hillary camp? Why not warn Hillary? Why not warn Trump, hey, be on the lookout, the Russians, we think they’re already inside your campaign, Mr. Trump. None of that happened. Because they want, apparently, to catch all of this happening so that they can associate Trump with it.
RUSH: Finally, if the FBI, the DOJ, the Obama administration, let’s simplify this. It’s not MI5 and MI6, although they’re tangentially involved. It’s the Obama administration. That’s who’s spying on Trump. That’s who’s trying to interdict the Trump campaign. If they were truly concerned about Russian meddling in the election, why didn’t they do more to stop it instead of just monitor it? It’s a sensible question.
If the Russians are spying, and they know it, which is what they’re trying to convince people of, then why the heck didn’t they try to stop it? Or do anything to stop it, rather than plant somebody in there to monitor it? Look. These answers reveal themselves. I’m asking the questions rhetorically.
RUSH: Edmond, Oklahoma. This is Vic. Vic, you’re next. Hi.
CALLER: Hello, Mr. Limbaugh. How are you, sir?
RUSH: I’m great. Thank you, sir.
CALLER: Pre-EIB dittos, because I was stationed Edwards many years and I picked you up when you were in Sacramento every once in a while in a while before you actually went nationwide. I told my wife, “This guy should go nationwide.” So I’m glad that happened, sir. I’m a little nervous speaking to 40 million people, so I’ll make my point very quick and I’ll get out of your way. I think that Congressman Trey Gowdy — just a theory here — is burnishing his credentials to succeed General Sessions as attorney general. I think she’s going the extra mile to get the benefit of the doubt to be overly fair to DOJ and FBI to show good faith and also help him get through confirmation by showing loyalty.
RUSH: Wait, do you…? You think, then, that Trump is going to get rid of Sessions and nominate Trey Gowdy?
CALLER: I think so, sir, because Mr. Gowdy has respectfully but very firmly been pushing against Sessions on doing something that really, ethically, he looked at —
RUSH: Well, now, that’s true. By the way… Wait a minute, now. You’re not nervous. You are altogether, man.
CALLER: No, I’m not, Rush. (chuckling) I’m really nervous.
RUSH: Because the other half —
CALLER: I want to get out of here! (laughing)
RUSH: Well, no, no. The other half of the Gowdy story is he’s saying Trump has every right to get rid of Sessions, that Sessions should have never been AG. He’s saying all that, too.
CALLER: Yes. That’s what gave me the hint, and the fact that he said he didn’t want to be the AG. That’s another point. It’s political-speak that I’m really not interested. He’s gonna do a Paul Ryan and say, “I really don’t want the job,” and pretend he’s going in kicking and screaming, but he’s very ambitious. Remember he wanted to be speaker. He knows that’s not gonna happen. AG would be a really good rebound.
RUSH: Well, just so I understand your thinking here, you are of the belief that Gowdy attempting to side with the FBI against Trump is actually a ploy to be able to get Gowdy confirmed after Trump nominates him to be AG. And Trump’s in on this, otherwise Trump would blow up and get mad. I mean, why would you nominate this guy who’s undercutting you in public and on the media about whether or not the Russians are spying? So Trump would have to be in on. Trump’s in on it. This is all about getting Gowdy in as AG, ’cause he is a tough-as-nails prosecutor. That’s his passion. That’s what Gowdy loves. That’s why he said he was resigning from Congress. There’s not enough action. He wants to go put bad guys away.
CALLER: Exactly right. You read my mind. That’s exactly right, sir. And, by the way, I was in the… You and I are about the same age, so we have the same life experiences, except I was born and raised in New York City. I went to the Air Force Academy. But I’m telling you, I really appreciate what you do to put things… You know, you’re like that… I’ve been through some surgeries lately. You’re like that specialist of specialists that can say, “Here’s what’s wrong with your back,” or, “Here’s how to cure that cancer.” I really appreciate your insight on these things because it brings light to things that ordinarily, you know, those of us who are not specialists in this can say, “Okay. Well, that explains that. That makes sense.” And of course, most of the time that’s exactly what’s happened, you know? So that’s where I’m coming from on this guess, sir.
RUSH: Well, I greatly appreciate that, more than you know. I take that with great sincerity. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it. It’s one of the reasons I do this is to be understood. And it’s hard. The spoken word, you can’t go back and listen to it over again like you can if you read something you don’t quite get. You go back and read the paragraph again.
The spoken word, it’s there and gone. Except now, my spoken word is forever at RushLimbaugh.com and on our app. Transcripts are there. But beside that, listening to it, you can’t rewind it. So the fact that you get it, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate that. Thank you so much. That’s Vic in Edmond, Oklahoma.