PoliZette

Former AG Mukasey Turns Tables on Brennan

The CIA's role in providing undercover 'asset' as FBI informant during election could have violated the law

Former CIA Director John Brennan has been on the warpath against President Donald Trump, and on Friday, former Attorney General Michael Mukasey turned the tables.

Appearing on “The Laura Ingraham Show,” Mukasey — who served under President George W. Bush — ripped Brennan’s conduct since leaving office. Brennan (pictured above right) said Friday on the “Today” show that Trump had displayed “paranoia, insecurity” and that he tweets about independent counsel Robert Mueller as if he were guilty.

“John Brennan, when this is over, is gonna have a lot to answer for … because his participation in, or the participation of CIA in providing an informant to be used in connection with the Mueller investigation, I think is a story that hasn’t yet been told,” Mukasey said.

Mukasey (pictured above left) noted that the informant, Stefan Halper, was a “CIA asset.” Reportedly, Halper was working for FBI counterintelligence agents and made contacts with several figures associated with Trump’s 2016 campaign in an attempt to uncover ties to Russia.

Depending on the role that the CIA itself played, it might have crossed more than ethical lines, he said.

“I would like to know how a CIA asset suddenly becomes an FBI informant,” Mukasey said. “Who organized that? Who paid him? And was John Brennan running some kind of multi-agency operation relating to the Trump campaign? I don’t know that he has any credentials as a mind reader or as a psychoanalyst to be analyzing the president’s performance.”

Serious questions about Halper’s role remain, he said.

“I would like to know how he was paid. These people rarely work for nothing. And I’d like to know who organized the effort,” he said. “If the CIA has any role in this, that is not only dubious, [but] it is unlawful. The CIA is confined by statute to conducting its operations overseas — not conducting its operations in the United States.”

Related: FBI Had No ‘Clear Criminal Predicate’ for Trump Campaign Snoops

Mukasey faulted Brennan’s own performance in office. He noted that as CIA director, Brennan objected to the notion of a “war on terror” because terror was a tactic and the country cannot fight a war against a tactic. It was, Mukasey said, a “ridiculous statement.”

Mukasey also noted that Brennan objected to talking negatively about Islamic jihad because that is one of the religion’s five pillars.

“His sense of priorities and what’s important and what isn’t, I think is highly dubious,” he said. “And for him to be sounding off about the president’s security or lack of it may be a reflection of his own insecurity, which would be entirely appropriate.”

PoliZette senior writer Brendan Kirby can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter.

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PoliZette senior writer Brendan Kirby can be reached at [email protected].