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Former FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith’s legal team is pleading with a judge not to send him to prison for lying to secure surveillance orders against President Trump’s 2016 campaign adviser Carter Page.

Clinesmith agreed in August to plead guilty to making false statements when he doctored an email submitted as evidence to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

The discovery was made by US Attorney for Connecticut John Durham’s team reviewing the FBI’s Russia investigation. Durham will serve as a special counsel continuing his work under President-elect Joe Biden.

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Ex-FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith will plead guilty to falsifying Russia probe doc Kevin Clinesmith will plead guilty to falsifying an e-mail that...

The disgraced attorney faces up to five years in prison, though sentencing guidelines reportedly call for a maximum of six months behind bars.

Clinesmith’s legal team argued in court papers that he “cut a corner” because he was overworked and “exhausted,” Politico reports.

“In short, when Kevin altered the email in June 2017, he was spread thin and exhausted at work and in his personal life,” his legal team said in a filing.

US District Judge James Boasberg is expected to hand down Clinesmith’s sentence on Thursday.

Boasberg also serves as a judge on the surveillance court, which is comprised of federal judges who hear cases dealing with efforts to spy on suspected terrorists and spies.

Federal prosecutors are seeking at least three months in prison.

“It is plausible that his strong political views and/or personal dislike of the current President made him more willing to engage in the fraudulent and unethical conduct to which he has pled guilty,” prosecutors said in a filing.

“While it is impossible to know with certainty how those views may have affected his offense conduct, the defendant plainly has shown that he did not discharge his important responsibilities at the FBI with the professionalism, integrity, and objectivity required of such a sensitive job position.”

Although his wife is pregnant, prosecutors said “defendant’s family circumstances are not so unusual as to warrant special consideration.”

Filed under donald trump ,  fbi ,  lawyers ,  russia ,  12/4/20

News Source: New York Post

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Vikings QB Situation is Worse Than I Thought, Reporter Says

Courtesy of Vikings Vikings backup quarterbacks Kellen Mond and Sean Mannion have yet to prove they can lead a productive offense.

The Minnesota Vikings got a taste of what life without Kirk Cousins is like last season.

When Cousins tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of a crucial Week 17 matchup against the Green Bay Packers, the Vikings gave Sean Mannion the start at Lambeau Field.

Minnesota’s longest drive lasted just 3 minutes, 22 seconds.

Mannion was incapable of creating positive plays, often dumping the ball off behind the first-down markers, in a 37-10 loss that bounced the Vikings from playoff contention. The Vikings created just 206 yards of total offense.

Yet, Mannion still has a hold on the No. 2 quarterback spot over 2021 third-round pick Kellen Mond, who has struggled to adjust to the speed of the NFL. The two quarterbacks were named co-second string quarterbacks on the team’s first unofficial depth chart ahead of the preseason opener against the Las Vegas Raiders on August 14.

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After, Cousins tested positive for COVID-19 on August 12, reporters and fans alike got a good look at what the team looks like without Cousins in practice — a harbinger of what may happen if Minnesota were to lose Cousins for an extended time in the regular season.

And it’s bad.

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Returning from the last full practice before the Vikings travel to Las Vegas, SKOR North’s Judd Zulgad detailed the two Vikings quarterbacks’ performances.

Even after watching Mond and Mannion the past two weeks in training camp, seeing the two backups go against the first team in live reps presented a “new taste of ineptitude,” Zulgad said.

“This is not a functional situation,” Zulgad said. “Mannion knows what he wants to do, and he can’t do it. Mond doesn’t yet know what he wants to do and it takes so much time to process. Everything we’ve been talking about for two weeks was there in broad daylight for everyone to see… and it’s worse than I thought.”

Zulgad took play-by-play of several series both backups took in his practice notes from August 12:

Neither had been impressive running the second team in camp, and it got downright ugly late Thursday afternoon with Mond and Mannion attempting to make the first-team go. A small sample: Mannion started in team drills and had a pass tipped at the line of scrimmage, threw a sure interception that safety Cam Bynum dropped and spiked a ball into the ground because of pressure from Za’Darius Smith. He then finally completed a pass to Justin Jefferson.

Mond, meanwhile, continues to hold the ball far too long as he surveys the field for receivers. My charting had four sacks on Mond, although he was allowed to keep plays alive after he would have been taken down, and he dropped another snap from under center. That has been a consistent problem for the 2021 third-round pick in this camp.

With Mond and Mannion unproven to lead a productive offense yet, the Vikings are entertaining looking elsewhere.

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Vikings ‘Very Open’ to Improving QB Depth

The preseason will only be a glimpse into how Mond and Mannion could perform against opposing teams’ starters. Star players are often rested for the entire preseason and the remaining starters are often kept on a pitch count.

A month away from the season opener, Minnesota will have to act fast if it wants to improve the backup quarterback depth.

ESPN’s Kevin Seifert reported that the Vikings are “very open” to the possibility the team’s true backup to Cousins isn’t currently on the roster.

“My understanding is that internally they are very open to the possibility that the backup quarterback isn’t on the roster,” Seifert said, via Vikings Territory editor Sean Borman. There are two factors there; how do these guys (Mond and Mannion) perform and who’s potentially available.”

The Vikings had Kevin Hogan in for a workout on August 4 but have made no other moves that they’re seriously considering signing another quarterback.

 

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