Former Blackwater CEO Erik Prince recently got back in the news when it emerged that he’s serving as an informal adviser to Trump. That’s not the only time he’s offered his services to the Donald. He played a key role in a conspiracy by rogue FBI agents to throw the election to Trump.
Late last night, HuffPo columnist Seth Abramson discovered that Prince gave a rather interesting interview to Breitbart News Daily on November 4—less than 24 hours before Comey announced there was no there there in the new emails. Prince claimed that the FBI’s hand was forced by hopping mad NYPD detectives investigating Anthony Weiner. Supposedly, they found “State Department emails” and evidence of a trove of criminal activity involving the Clintons and other prominent Democrats. Click over to my piece at Liberal America to hear it—but be sure you’re sitting down. After all, this is Breitbart—or rather, Trumpbart—we’re talking about.
According to this narrative the NYPD gave the FBI an ultimatum—reopen the investigation, or we will hold a press conference to announce a ton of arrests. Supposedly, this “pushed the FBI off their chairs,” prompting Comey’s now-infamous letter.
Two big problems. First, we know that the warrant contained no such thing. Rather, its sole “probable cause” was a possible email exchange between Hillary and Huma Abedin. On that basis, a number of legal experts have condemned it as hackery at best and a Fourth Amendment violation at worst.
More seriously, Prince openly admitted that he knew about the emails before Comey did. For those of you keeping score, that makes THREE close confidants to Trump who knew about the emails in the three weeks between when they were found and when Comey was finally notified. The other two? Rudy Giuliani and Jim Kallstrom, both of whom were in contact with active agents during the investigation.
And all three of them knew damn well what they were doing when they made those leaks. Remember, Giuliani is a former U. S. Attorney, and before then headed the DOJ’s criminal division. Kallstrom is the former head of the FBI in New York City. Prince was a major government contractor during his tenure at Blackwater. If this isn’t evidence that this election was tainted by criminal misconduct, what is?
Abramson muses that Giuliani revealed his contacts with FBI agents on orders from Trump, while Prince did so on orders from either Steve Bannon or Trump. I haven’t seen anything to suggest--yet—that Trump was directly involved. After all, you’re talking about a couple of guys who are known to be cowboys. The fact that Prince went on Breitbart, though, makes you wonder if Bannon was in some way involved.
He also muses that Prince’s adviser role, as well as the choice of his sister, Betsy DeVos, as Education Secretary, are rewards for a job (criminally) well done. That’s a bit of a stretch. It’s very likely that DeVos is part of the massive debt Trump owes to the fundies, while Prince simply bought his post.
What is clear beyond any doubt is that, at the very least, Trump fostered an environment in which this was even remotely acceptable. Ironic, since Chris Christie lost out on the VP slot under similar circumstances. What is also clear is that Abramson wasn’t kidding when he called this potentially worse than Watergate.