What is going on at the J. Edgar Hoover Building? We have two top officials lying to investigators, leaking sensitive material to the press, and accepting gifts from liberal media reporters. These aren’t the bagel boys. It’s Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe, who was fired in disgrace after it was discovered that he lied under oath about a press leak regarding the bureau’s review of the Clinton Foundation. And now, the top official in the FBI’s press office was caught accepting gifts from writers at CNN and The New York Times. The Daily Caller News Foundation reported that this person resigned mysteriously last year—and now we know why:
Michael Kortan, who served as assistant director of public affairs, displayed a “lack of candor” during multiple interviews under oath with the DOJ watchdog about how he obtained the tickets, who he went with, and whether he reimbursed the CNN journalist, according to the report.
The OIG…concluded that Kortan lacked candor under oath when he provided answers to OIG’s questions relating to the September 2016 tickets that were misleading and false,” reads the report, which the DCNF obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.
The office of the inspector general (OIG), which is led by Michael Horowitz, discovered Kortan’s contacts with the CNN reporter during a review of his text messages as part of the investigation into the FBI’s activities during the 2016 presidential election.
Kortan’s media contacts and those of other FBI officials are noted on page 430 of the DOJ inspector general’s report from June 14, 2018, regarding the bureau’s handling of the Clinton email investigation.
On Oct. 16, 2018, the OIG separately released a summary of the Kortan investigation (though without identifying him). The summary said that the Justice Department declined prosecution in the case.
The full investigative report shows that Kortan resigned from the FBI on Feb. 16, 2018, while the OIG investigation was ongoing. He could not be reached for comment for this story.
Kortan accepted Nationals tickets from the reporter at least twice, for a May 9, 2016 game and another on Sept. 30, 2016. He also accepted tickets from a New York Times reporter in either 2014 or 2016.
Okay, so enough with the lame defenses of the FBI on cable news. Enough. There are some bad eggs in this agency, our main domestic intelligence service that has the capacity to ruin lives. McCabe lied, has been referred for criminal prosecution for his disgraceful remarks, but has settled into a nice gig at CNN (shocker!) in the meantime. And now, the press czar of the FBI is accepting gifts from prohibited sources (reporters who cover the DOJ) and denying he illegally released information, only to contact investigators multiple times to revise his remarks, according to DCNF.
It’s smaller potatoes, but it’s part of a larger pattern that we’ve seen from the FBI/DOJ since 2016. As for the palace intrigue with the media, not shocking—but again; it’s a good reminder as to what this White House is facing. And that IG report on the alleged FISA abuses during the Obama administration is pending.