But all of these steps were just a matter of finally being overt about something that had been true for over a year: The FBI was conducting a probe to try to make a criminal case on Trump. Because they did not have solid evidence of a crime, they did it under counterintelligence authority rather than criminal authority – calculating that the cover of probing Russia’s interference in the 2016 election would enable them to keep investigating while they tried to tighten up the obstruction case or find some other criminal offense.McCarthy details the revelation of this week that the Obama Justice Department opened an investigation on an incoming President under the guise of a "counterintelligence" effort, all the while telling Trump that he was not under investigation. But the investigation itself was the vehicle to set a trap for Trump where he would be called out for obstruction.
Make no mistake, though: The investigation was always about Donald Trump, from Day One.
Somebody asked why this investigation is being revealed now and answered that the FBI's conclusion that there is no evidence of collusion with the Russians is a way to telegraph to the anti-Trumpers that the Mueller report is going to be a huge nothingburger.
Gotta let 'em down easy.
Update - Red State: "...this seems like the last gasp of the Russia collusion narrative. Undoubtedly, the Democrats on Mueller’s team and those in-the-know in Department of Justice have told their friends in the media what sane people have known, there is no there there in the primary focus of Mueller’s investigation and they shouldn’t dig themselves in any deeper."
Extra - This article is getting a lot of attention for good reason: "On What Grounds Can the FBI Investigate the President as a Counterintelligence Threat?"