Twitter’s ousted deputy general counsel Jim Baker was at the center of controversy over the release of the so-called “Twitter Files,” and his past role as general counsel to the FBI has also drawn controversy. In between jobs, however, Baker landed a plum gig with CNN.
Baker was fired on Tuesday after it was revealed that he had investigated the first batch of “Twitter files” shared by Substack reporter Matt Taibbi without the knowledge of new Twitter owner Elon Musk.
Baker’s critics have pointed to his central role in the FBI’s investigation into alleged collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign during the 2016 presidential election, before his “reappointment” in December 2017 and his departure from the agency in May 2018.
Baker was involved in the filing of a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant to spy on then-Trump campaign aide Carter Page, which was largely approved by the Democratic National Committee and Clinton’s presidential campaign through liberal legislation. funded relied on the now-discredited Steele’s data. The firm of Perkins Coie.
TWITTER CONSULTANT JIM BAKER CHECKED ELON MUSK’S ‘TWITTER FILES’ WITHOUT KNOWING, MATT TAIBBY REVEALS
Baker also met in September 2016 with FBI agent Michael Sussmann, then-Hillary Clinton’s campaign lawyer, who provided information showing a secret communication channel between the Trump Organization and Russia-based Alfa Bank. reached, it was determined after the inspection.
Accused at Sussman’s trial and later acquitted of lying to the FBI about not disclosing his contacts with the Clinton campaign, Baker acknowledged that Sussman was a “friend” and that then-FBI Director James Comey and Sussman’s quickly shared his conclusions at the time. Andy McCabe, the FBI’s deputy director at the time, because the Russia investigation had already begun.
JAMES BAKER, THE TWITTER LAWYER FIRED BY ELON MUSK, PLAYED A KEY ROLE IN THE FBI’S INVESTIGATION OF TRUMP-RUSSIA COLLUSION.
Baker himself was indicted by the Justice Department in January 2019 for leaking classified information to reporters, but was never charged.
On May 10, 2019, a former FBI attorney began publicly criticizing then-President Trump’s attacks on the Russia investigation. Three days later, he made a guest appearance on CNN, the first of at least nine appearances over the course of a month.
In late June, CNN hired Baker as a legal analyst.
For a year, Baker was brought in to discuss the Mueller investigation and later the legality of Trump’s Ukraine conflict, which led to his first impeachment.
The controversy stems from Trump’s July 2019 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, in which Trump sought dirt on Hunter Biden and his father’s role in Ukrainian energy company Burisma, which is running for president. was close. Trump has been accused of trying to create a quid pro quo that would block foreign aid to Ukraine until Ukraine announced an investigation into the Bidens.
ELON MUSK TELLS JACK DORSEY ‘CRITICAL’ TWITTER FILES ARE ‘HIDDEN’ FROM BOSSES, SUGGESTING SOME ARE ‘DELETED’
It is worth noting that as early as 2018, it was reported that the FBI began its investigation into Hunter Biden’s “tax affairs”. It is unclear whether the investigation began before Baker left the FBI or whether he had any knowledge that the FBI was investigating him. Hunter Biden speaking on CNN during the Ukraine scandal.
Several times, Baker appeared on Cuomo Prime Time alongside his former FBI colleague, CNN’s Andrew McCabe, about the latest Trump drama. He also frequently appeared on panels with then-CNN chief rights analyst Jeffrey Toobin, who has since left the network.
Much of Baker’s time on the air has been devoted to lashing out at Trump, even suggesting that the president should personally apologize to him and the rest of the FBI for criticizing the agency.
Based on Grabien transcripts, Baker’s last known CNN appearance was on February 20, 2020, to discuss the sentencing of Trump ally Roger Stone. According to his LinkedIn page, Baker left CNN in May 2020 before officially joining Twitter in June 2020.
According to transcripts, CNN has made only one mention of Baker’s role in supporting Twitter’s decision to suppress the Hunter Biden laptop story since Taibbi first reported his involvement on Friday. However, CNN has yet to address speculation that he was fired from Twitter and insubordinate during the release of the “Twitter Files.”
Musk announced Tuesday that he had terminated Baker as Twitter’s No. 2 attorney “amid concerns about Baker’s possible role in suppressing information critical to public communication.”
When a Twitter user asked if Baker was able to explain himself, Musk replied that “the explanation … is unbelievable.”
After some time, Taibbi named his Twitter page “Additional for Twitter files”.
ELON MUSK’S LAPTOP STORY SHUTS OFF LABOR LAWYER ON TWITTER FIRE
“First batch of Twitter files released here on Friday. We expected to release more over the weekend. Many wondered why there was a delay,” Taibbi tweeted. “Now we can tell you part of the reason why. On Tuesday, Twitter Deputy General Counsel (and former FBI general counsel) Jim Baker was fired. Among the reasons? Examining the first batch of ‘Twitter files’ — without the knowledge of new management. .”
Taibbi explained: “The production process for ‘Twitter Files’ involved delivering it to two journalists (Barry Weiss and myself) through a lawyer close to the new management. But after the initial set, things got complicated. Dam both of us in the next few days. While dealing with obstacles for new searches, @BariWeiss discovered that the person responsible for releasing the files was a person named Jim. When he called to ask for the last name “Jim”, the answer came: “Jim Baker.”
Weiss’ “jaw hit the floor,” he said.
The Substack writer then shared a screenshot of the first set of files he and Weiss received, titled “Spectra Baker Emails.”
“Baker is a controversial figure. He has been the FBI’s subject since 2016 on everything from the Steel Dossier to the Alpha Server mess. He resigned in 2018 following an investigation into leaks to the press. out,” Taibbi told himself. followers. The news that Baker was looking into the ‘Twitter files’ came as a surprise, to say the least. Twitter’s new chief, Elon Musk, moved quickly to ‘exit’ Baker on Tuesday.
“Reporters continued to dig through the Twitter Files – a lot of it – today. The next installment of the ‘Twitter Files’ comes @bariweiss. Stay tuned,” Taibbi teased.
Weiss later added, “It’s been quite the weekend.”
ELON MUSK’S ‘TWITTER FILES’ TO SHARE HUNTER BIDEN STORY, MATT TAIBBY AGREED TO SOME TERMS.
Baker appeared in the first episode, titled “Twitter Files,” shared by Taibbi on Friday night.
In revealing the internal debate over how to interpret Twitter’s crackdown Hunter Biden laptop story During the 2020 election, Baker told colleagues, “I support the conclusion that we need more facts to assess whether the materials were tampered with,” but added, “It’s reasonable to assume that they may have been, and be careful.”
In addition, while Taibbi initially recalled that “several sources heard about a ‘general’ warning from federal law enforcement that summer about possible foreign hacking, what I’ve seen – about government involvement in the laptop incident there is no evidence.” It’s unclear whether Baker’s involvement in the investigation of the “Twitter Files” led Taibbi to reach this conclusion, or whether Baker missed files that showed the federal government’s involvement in suppressing Twitter’s story about Hunter Biden’s laptop.
Former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey called for full transparency with the release of the “Twitter Files.”
“If the goal is transparency to build trust, why not just leave everything unfiltered and let men judge for themselves? Does it include all discussions surrounding current and future actions? Go public now,” Dorsey tweeted on Wednesday.
“The most important information has been hidden (even from you) and some may be deleted, but everything we find will be public,” Musk replied.
It is unclear whether Baker was directly involved in suppressing or deleting the “Twitter files.”
Musk talked about Twitter’s past and present efforts to be transparent in the selection of content on the platform, including censored content.
Twitter banned its users from sharing the New York Post’s 2020 Hunter Biden laptop report in tweets and direct messages.
At the time, Twitter Safety claimed the articles violated its “infringing content policy.” Both Dorsey and former Twitter security chief Yoel Roth have since acknowledged this the company’s actions were wrong.