Commenting on how the statute of limitations ran out on charging former Obama administration Director of National Intelligence James Clapper with perjury -- for allegedly lying to Congress about government surveillance of Americans -- Judicial Watch's Chris Farrell said that Clapper was allowed to walk away from potential prosecution and that he is a "national security problem on two feet."
Farrell, the director of Investigations & Research at Judicial Watch, further said that Clapper and his colleagues in the Obama administration -- FBI Director James Comey and CIA Director John Brennan -- are "self-appointed commissars," operatives of the "deep state," who "selectively leak" to the media, "attempt to steal elections" and try to "manipulate the public."
Farrell made his remarks on the March 12 edition of Lou Dobbs Tonight.
Leading into the segment, host Lou Dobbs explained that when Clapper testified before Congress on March 12, 2013, that the National Security Agency (NSA) did "not" --"no, sir, not willingly" -- collect data on hundreds of millions of Americans, he apparently was not telling the truth. The NSA reportedly has been conducting warrantless surveillance on Americans for years, ostensibly for national security reasons through the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).
Under the law, the NSA can surveil the electronic communications of foreigners abroad but in the process the communications of countless Americans can also be swept up. In 2013, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) asked Clapper, "Does the NSA collect any data at all on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans?" Clapper, then-director of National Intelligence, said, "No, sir."
On March 12, 2018, Dobbs said to Farell, "Pretty straightforward, isn't it? ... We just listened to the DNI, former DNI, James Clapper, lied to Congress straight up."
Judicial Watch's Chris Farrell said, "And he [Clapper] takes a walk which is the ever-frustrating point of the disparity of treatment and prosecutorial indiscretion that the American people are so incredibly fed up with." The statute of limitations on perjury, five years, expired for Clapper on March 13, 2018. Many lawmakers had called for Clapper to be prosecuted but nothing was done under the Obama Justice Department or the Trump Justice Department.
Farrell continued, "On the way over to the studio, I saw a published report that indicates that Clapper was leaking to the news media about the ponied-up dossier [on Trump]. And so now there is another whole round of Clapper-related selective leaking and lying. He's a national security problem on two feet."
Dobbs then remarked, "Yes. He and you can add a couple other pair, James Comey, the fired director of the FBI and John Brennan, the CIA head. The three of them look like they were, you know, a dog-and-pony show organized to go on the road against the president -- President Trump -- and say whatever the hell they wanted."
"These guys are three sort of self-anointed commissars that should really change their title," said Farrell. "They are operatives of the worst examples of the deep state. They know better. They selectively leak. They attempt to steal elections, they attempt to manipulate the public."
"They cozy up with, you know, friendly news media to plant stories," he said. "They are in the worst sense political operatives and that's why I used the word commissar."
When Dobbs asked why there is a double standard, whay are low-level federal workers prosecuted for these crimes but the senior officials get away with lawbreaking, Farrell said, "Like I say, if you were a GS-13 Intel analyst in one of the alphabet soup agencies, you know, they cut your head off. There will be no hesitation for any of this same behavior. It is impossible to rationalize or explain."
"As you mentioned earlier, this two-tier system and the consequences for, you know, the little people who have to pay attention to laws is quite dire," said Farrell. "But for this anointed class of commissars they walk away unscathed and, you know, under that six months you probably see a book [deal]."
James Clapper is now a senior national security analyst for CNN.