May 14, 2020

There's no doubt there's a legitimate basis for an investigation into Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC). Not arguing that! I'm just saying that this investigation seems somewhat ... selective. After all, as far as we know, the feds aren't investigating the egregious stock trades of Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-GA).

Odds are very high that Barr targeted Burr at the direction of Trump, who is angry that Burr did his job as head of the Senate Intelligence committee and acknowledged the intelligence that Russia intervened in the 2016 election to the benefit of Trump. But of course an attorney general would never sign off on such a political investigation, right?

On Morning Joe, Kasie Hunt talked about the story that broke last night from the L.A. Times. She said law enforcement officials confirmed that the FBI seized Richard Burr's cell phone.

"They obtained a search warrant for it and took it from him. In the course of their investigation into his stock trading, we had learned a few months ago that Burr made some very fortuitously timed stock sales that were right before the coronavirus pandemic really hit the U.S. between about $600,000 and $1.7 million worth," she said.

She pointed out that he has access to information through the Intelligence committee as one of the Gang of 8.

"It is extraordinarily rare, and it is likely, if you speak with legal experts -- and, you know, I've been talking to folks a little overnight. This broke late last night -- but it is likely that this would have had to have been authorized, you know, basically at the top of the Department of Justice. obviously, this is something that deals with a separate and co-equal branch of government. it is not something we see every day.

"We also know that this president has been pretty frustrated with some of the things that Richard Burr has done as chairman of the Senate Intelligence committee. Most recently, his committee incurred in the assessment that the Russians interfered in our 2016 election, not just generally, but specifically to help Donald Trump win the election. So a pretty high stakes showdown here."

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