Discovery, Depositions, and Dossiers

Aleksej Gubarev, a Russian businessman named in the Steele Dossier, is suing BuzzFeed for its reporting about the dossier. The Daily Caller reports that the judge presiding over the lawsuit has ordered Fusion GPS to appear for a deposition conducted by the plaintiff’s lawyers. Representatives of the opposition research firm will have to answer a wide range of questions about the creation of the dossier, the investigation supporting it, and how it was disseminated. Gubarev’s lawyers want to question Fusion GPS executives to find out whether the dossier’s allegations about Gubarev were investigated and whether BuzzFeed News was warned about the accuracy of the claims.

Fusion GPS had claimed that their relationships with their clients were protected by the First Amendment. U.S. District Court Judge Ursula Ungaro rejected that theory, ruling the firm’s business relationships with its clients “are not protected from disclosure by the First Amendment even though the opposition research it conducts on behalf of clients may be political in nature.”

The case is scheduled to go to trial in Miami this November. Gubanev is also suing Christopher Steele in the UK.

Disproving a Lie

Byron York has a post over at the Washington Examiner dealing with a Democrat talking point about the infamous Steele dossier: nothing in the dossier has been “disproven.”

“Setting aside the absurd and patently unfair ‘guilty until proven innocent’ standard that thinking requires, it also ignores the fact that the FBI has never tried to disprove it,” Republican Rep. John Ratcliffe, a former federal prosecutor who now serves on the House Judiciary Committee, said in a recent text exchange. “When the president asked the FBI to do exactly that, one of Jim Comey’s secret memos documents the response: [Comey] told him it is ‘very difficult to disprove a lie.'”

Yes, it is. And that’s something to keep in mind whenever someone suggests the dossier is worthwhile because it hasn’t been proven false.

Yeah, well, the claims in the dossier are extraordinary, and as the saying goes, extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. It isn’t up to President Trump and his associates to disprove anything. The burden of proof is on Steele, GPS Fusion, and others touting the dossier. They haven’t proven anything.

Read the whole thing.


Team Kimberlin Post of the Day

After years of frivolous litigation involving multiple LOLsuits (I’ve been a defendant in four of ’em and a bogus peace order petition), The Dread Deadbeat Pro-Se Kimberlin’s campaign of brass knuckles reputation management has been singularly unsuccessful. And now his name is back in the news because of his association with Cody Shearer, the creator of the anti-Trump “Dossier No. 2.”

J. E. Dyer writes about the Shearer/Kimberlin connection in a post over at Liberty Unyielding.

Shearer, besides being a major piece of work in general, played a key role during the George H.W. Bush years, and the first Clinton campaign for the 1992 election, in hyping Brett Kimberlin’s claim that he (Kimberlin) had sold pot to then-Vice President Dan Quayle, years before when Quayle was younger.  Shearer had known Kimberlin for years, in other words, and used his (Shearer’s) journalistic pulpit to retail a politicized narrativeon Kimberlin’s behalf.

But although BuzzFeed and Daily Caller both cite unnamed sources affirming Kimberlin’s marginal role in the “Russia” narrative assembled separately in 2016 (again, Kimberlin denies it), what really completes the circle is Cody Shearer’s membership in the Shearer family, whose ties to the Clintons, including his own, could hardly be closer.

Read the whole thing. And also checkout this post over at The Weekly Standard.

I’m Not Making This Up, You Know

The Guardian has a story up about a second memo that the FBI is allegedly evaluating that supposedly confirms some of the infamous Steele dossier of opposition research about Donald Trump paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign. The source of the memo is said to be Cody Shearer. That’s the same Cody Shearer who promoted Brett Kimberlin’s false claim to have been Dan Quayle’s dope dealer.