Special Counsel John Durham just dropped a major bomb about Clinton lawyer Michael Sussmann, a key player in the Russia hoax and resulting turmoil and one of the main targets of Durham’s investigation so far.
That bomb is that Durham’s team has uncovered a test between James Baker, the FBI General Counsel at the time, and Michael Sussman, a text that Durham is claiming shows Sussman lied to the FBI about his work on behalf of the Clinton Campaign. That text, dated Sept. 18, 2016, reportedly says:
“Jim – it’s Michael Sussmann. I have something time-sensitive (and sensitive) I need to discuss. Do you have availibilty for a short meeting tomorrow? I’m coming on my own – not on behalf of a client or company – want to help the Bureau. Thanks.”
According to Just the News, Durham’s prosecutors intend on using that test, particularly the part where he says he’s on his own, to prove that he lied. In their words from a recent motion:
“The defendant lied in that meeting, falsely stating to the General Counsel that he was not providing the allegations to the FBI on behalf of any client. In fact, the defendant had assembled and conveyed the allegations to the FBI on behalf of at least two specific clients, including (i) a technology executive (“Tech Executive-1”) at a U.S.-based Internet company (“Internet Company-1”), and (ii) the Clinton Campaign.”
Why that claim is crucial in proving that he lied is that a year later he admitted that he approached the FBI not on his own, but on behalf of a client, saying:
“We had a conversation, as lawyers do with their clients, about client 1 needs and objectives and the best course to take for a client. And so it may have been a decision that we came to together. I mean, I don’t want to imply that I was sort of directed to do something against my better judgment, or that we were in any sort of conflict.
Getting caught in that lie is bad news for Sussmann. Not only will his credibility in future claims be diminished by being caught, but the text helps Durham prove his case that Sussman originally claimed that he wasn’t doing so on the behalf of any client when he approached the FBI, a claim that Sussman’s lawyers have disputed.
Up until now, they’ve attacked the allegation because Durham relied on only one witness in making it, saying:
“The Special Counsel has brought a false statement charge on the basis of a purported oral statement made over five years ago for which there is only a single witness, Mr. Baker; for which there is no recording; and for which there are no contemporaneous notes by anyone who was actually in the meeting.”
Now, with the text in hand (assuming it’s authentic), Durham can disprove that and show that Sussmann was in fact lying.
They’ve also alleged that even if Sussmann lied, the lie isn’t material. Durham disagreed on that point too. Describing why that lie is material, and thus important, Durham said:
“The defendant’s false statement to the FBI General Counsel was plainly material because it misled the General Counsel about, among other things, the critical fact that the defendant was disseminating highly explosive allegations about a then-Presidential candidate on behalf of two specific clients, one of which was the opposing Presidential campaign.“
This is big new, a major step forward in Durham’s case against Sussmann.