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About this blog: I am a native of Alameda County, grew up in Pleasanton and currently live in the house I grew up in that is more than 100 years old. I spent 39 years in the daily newspaper business and wrote a column for more than 25 years in add...  (More)

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Making headlines for the wrong reason

Uploaded: Dec 22, 2020
The Livermore Valley’s congressional representative Eric Swalwell has found himself in the news for all the wrong reasons this month.

An Axios investigative piece linked him to suspected Chinese Communist spy Christine Fang (also known as Fang Fang). The FBI briefed Swalwell on the situation in 2015 and he ended his association with her. He was elected to Congress in 2012 and she bundled donations for his 2014 re-election campaign. She also placed an intern in his office. There are several pictures from that period showing them posing together at events.

The concern raised by Republicans and conservative pundits is that Swalwell was placed on the House Intelligence Committee by Speaker Nancy Pelosi in 2015. He had no background in intelligence (he was a prosecutor for the Alameda County District Attorney’s office) before he was elected to Congress. He was a member of the Dublin City Councill at the time and upset 20-term Rep. Pete Stark, who was the longest serving and perhaps the most out-of-touch member of the House.

Seventeen Republican representatives signed a letter to Pelosi asking that Swalwell be removed from the committee. Pelosi steadfastly has refused to do so.

The nature of Swalwell’s relationship to Fang is unclear. Fox News host Tucker Carlson reported that it was sexual, while Swalwell’s office refused to confirm or deny whether they were sleeping together.

To be fair, it should be noted that Swalwell was single at the time (he met his wife in 2015 and they got married in 2016). Of course, being fair is something that Swalwell certainly has not practiced when he claimed in the media for the two-plus years of the Mueller Investigation that he has seen evidence of Trump collusion with the Russians. Rep. Adam Schiff, chair of the Intelligence Committee and chairman of the House impeachment effort, lied just like Swalwell did. It’s distressing to see former officers of the court (both were prosecutors) lie repeatedly to the media and the public. And even more upsetting to see the media consistently repeat the lies without demanding to see evidence.

Curiously when Swalwell was asked about the situation, he said he cooperated with the FBI and ended the relationship. He refused to answer any questions about the nature of the relationship, claiming it was a national security issue.

The Axios piece reported that Fang had sexual relationships with several other elected officials such as mayors.

It certainly has been an embarrassing time for Swalwell.

What is it worth to you?


Posted by Michael Austin , a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Dec 22, 2020 at 8:57 am

Michael Austin is a registered user.

Swalwell has no conscious, aroused or otherwise!

Posted by Lahommed, a resident of Dublin,
on Dec 22, 2020 at 9:02 am

Lahommed is a registered user.

You still try to put up a defense for Swalwell. Although you do touch on his continued attacks on Trump all the while he himself was selling out America! We will find out that to this day he and his family have contacts with Fang fang. That other congress and senate members including Feinstein and Pelosi knew her! This is called investigative journalism which you have either forgotten or neglect? Look deeper probe harder and you will find Eric swalwell is corrupt and has acted in a way to put America at risk, He is a spy and his acts of Treason should and must be brought to light. Corruption runs throughout our Govt and Swalwell got caught. Remember he did not advise the FBI they contacted him and he played the imbecile patsy! Its time to take down all the corrupt self serving representatives Now and Forever!....Now get in there and do your job as a reporter or leave it to another!

Posted by DublinMike, a resident of Dublin,
on Dec 22, 2020 at 11:11 am

DublinMike is a registered user.

"Fox News host Tucker Carlson " Now there's a reliable source. Tim, you out did yourself.

Posted by Kevin, a resident of Castlewood,
on Dec 22, 2020 at 12:21 pm

Kevin is a registered user.

Tim, you start with Swalwell's relationship with a Chinese spy and end with claim that he and Schiff lied about Trump's collusion with Russians. All old news! You are really desperate to find something to blog about. I agree with DublinMike about your use of Fox News Tucker Carlson as a source - amazing!

This is your logic and approach as an elder at GraceWay church and other right-wing Trumpist so-called Christian leaders that have resulted in church's decline.

Posted by Swish, a resident of Danville,
on Dec 22, 2020 at 4:04 pm

Swish is a registered user.

@Kevin: I find your personal attacks on Tim's religion and his church highly offensive, but then again everything you post seems extremely offensive. As many have noted, you appear to have anger problems, and need some professional help.

As to Congressman Swalwell, he should, at a minimum, be immediately removed from the Intelligence Committee. Being intimately involved with a Chinese spy for years is grounds enough. Hopefully, some Democrat with integrity, which Swalwell has shown to have none, will run against him for his seat in the House. It is time for Swalwell to be voted out of office.

Posted by Jake Waters, a resident of Birdland,
on Dec 22, 2020 at 8:32 pm

Jake Waters is a registered user.

I for one Tim appreciate you behaving as a journalist and reporting on Eric Swalwell. It is high time that some one exposed him. Secondly, I find it very disingenuous for the above comment about your spirituality- that is uncalled for here. I believe in free speech strongly, but to attack your faith and identify your church is disrespectful and ignorant. I'm sad to see that happen.

Lastly, Tucker Carlson IS the smartest guy on cable.

Posted by Malcolm Hex, a resident of San Ramon,
on Dec 23, 2020 at 1:33 am

Malcolm Hex is a registered user.

This from Castlewood Kevin:

“Tim, you start with Swalwell's relationship with a Chinese spy and end with claim that he and Schiff lied about Trump's collusion with Russians. All old news!"

Yeah? Well guess what Kevin, you obviously believe in people who lie, don't cha? Ya boy Swalwell - the former Deputy DA who worked for Alameda County - insisted he had EVIDENCE that Trump not only colluded with the Russians, but Trump was also a Russian agent. However, Mueller, and his investigators - almost all Democrats I might add - cleared Trump after a two year investigation.

Apparently Kevin supports the lies of people who were sworn to uphold the law. But as with most people who lie, what goes around comes around (as you sow, so shall you reap). Take heed Kevin, you might learn something.

Posted by Mike, a resident of Val Vista,
on Dec 23, 2020 at 10:01 am

Mike is a registered user.

tRump was never cleared of anything. Sad that there are people who will stretch reality to this point. Corruption is the world of GOP.

Posted by Kevin, a resident of Castlewood,
on Dec 23, 2020 at 10:20 am

Kevin is a registered user.

I am highlighting Tim for who he is. He is a church elder and in parallel, he publishes this garbage in his blog about Swalwell having a sexual relationship with a Chinese spy with Tucker Carlson as his source. I am not angry - I am disappointed in Christian leaders and so-called evangelicals for stooping low. On one hand, these people claim that they follow the Bible and believe in Christ while conducting their lives in opposite of what Christ stands for.

A GraceWay church elder is commissioned to grow Christ's kingdom. By publishing political garbage blog in the Bay Area that overwhelmingly voted for the Democrats, Tim is pushing away a majority of the population from GraceWay. Or perhaps GraceWay is a church for people like Tim. I doubt it as I assume there are a lot of good people in that church.

Posted by Malcolm Hex, a resident of San Ramon,
on Dec 23, 2020 at 11:05 am

Malcolm Hex is a registered user.

The only “political garbage" appears to be leaking from the left side of Kevin's mouth. He's an angry little man, who apparently thinks the Swalwell story should get a pass. Hey Kevin, at least the Swalwell story is a story; not like the one Swalwell made up about President Trump. And by the way, Mueller's finding in this case was unfounded �" the allegation was false or not factual.

Furthermore, Tim has a right to post whatever he wants. And in this case, he posted information that was stated from another source. Well guess what Kevin, at least Tim named the source! Tim also never entwined his political views with religion - YOU DID THAT. Is this your pathetic attempt to shame him? It didn't work buddy, you failed, and rather miserably I might add.

As for Mike, Trump was cleared of collusion with the Russians in Mueller's investigation. The rest of the investigation regarding alleged obstruction of justice was not sustained �" meaning insufficient facts existed to either prove or disprove the allegation. I might add that Mueller himself stated he could not prove or disprove his findings.

Posted by Vic-tah, a resident of Mission Park,
on Dec 23, 2020 at 2:52 pm

Vic-tah is a registered user.

Tim you need to retire or you should be fired from your column. This attack on our Representative is unfounded. Quoting that moron and lying Tucker shows your dangerous bias and disconnection from the factual world. If you are a Trumper, say so and OWN IT. You're on the wrong side of history.

Posted by Malcolm Hex, a resident of San Ramon,
on Dec 23, 2020 at 3:52 pm

Malcolm Hex is a registered user.

This void of thought remark from Vic-tah:

"Tim, you should be fired from your column. This attack on our representative is unfounded."

LOL!!! What immunity does Swalwell have that Trump doesn't? Hmm? Wow! Oh, I get it, freedom of expression applies to one and not the other? Um, where in the our great constitution does it say that?

Here's another beauty stated by Vic-tah:

"Quoting that moron and lying Tucker shows your dangerous bias and disconnection from the factual world."

So, Tim is dangerous and disconnected. Um, where is the danger you boast of? Please elaborate. And what is the "factual world" you speak of? After all, we know that a Chinese spy worked with Swalwell - which of course we know to be a fact.

Posted by Kevin, a resident of Castlewood,
on Dec 23, 2020 at 6:47 pm

Kevin is a registered user.

Malcolmhex, Jake, Dan, DHKSK (do you have any other names?) you all post the same way - put somebody's statements in your post with “" around them and then attaching your BS lies to it. Are you the same person with multiple personalities or did you all graduate from the same school or from the same clan? BTW- I am not angry rightnow - I am having fun with you!

Posted by Malcolm Hex, a resident of San Ramon,
on Dec 23, 2020 at 8:08 pm

Malcolm Hex is a registered user.

Where did I lie, Sir? I quoted you. I think the issue is that you forget your own BS.

BTW Sir, you attacked Tim on religious grounds. Tim's article had nothing to do with religion. He pointed out a fact of what someone else said. You didn't like it because Tim's story was in contrast to your politics.

You remind me of a guy who talks about issues unrelated to the conversation. Kind of awkward.

Posted by Kevin, a resident of Castlewood,
on Dec 23, 2020 at 10:22 pm

Kevin is a registered user.

Malcolm Hex, Jake Waters, Dan, DHKSK, et al ,you and Tim and Trumpsters live on a different planet. You live on Fox and Newsmax planet so the majority of your political statements are lies. The dark irony is that you don't even know you are lying and spreading garbage (I dare you to take this and put it “").

As for my statements about Tim's religion- the key word is character!! Something that is lacking in politics right now especially in Republican Party and right-wing everything - media, religion, etc. Tim lacks character because as a church leader of GraceWay Church, he is indulging in garbage about another person's life. How about blogging and praying for over 300,000 deaths from Covid (DHKSK or whoever you are will take this and twist it into some garbage about people who had other diseases and died from Covid so they shouldn't count), or the economic pain ( Jake is going to take this and twist it into it is Newsome's fault because he is closing restaurants while he goes to French Laundry). Character is bigger than your silly arguments (oh oh this is a good sentence for you to put in “"). It is about caring for others, not about your 401k. Trump pardoned Jared Kushner's father. I lived in NY and know what kind of trash Jared's father is (come on say he is the president and can pardon anyone he wants). Chris Christy (another sans-character) NJ ex-governor and Trump's buddy, put Kushner behind bars. Trump is the lowest of the low, the worst and we must run away from it. You all and Tim are as low as he is as long as you are on his planet. Trump just went to Mar a Lago to play golf (yes, Obama also played golf but not as much as Trump- come on - take this and put it in “"). Trump just F'ed Republicans by asking for $2000 / person give-away instead of $300 or whatever the amount as part of Covid relief. Come on! Wake up!

Posted by Malcolm Hex, a resident of San Ramon,
on Dec 23, 2020 at 10:51 pm

Malcolm Hex is a registered user.

Oh, boy... Um, you might want to separate your tantrum into paragraphs next time; not that it would help, but it's a start.

Posted by Linda Kelly, a resident of Vintage Hills,
on Dec 23, 2020 at 11:54 pm

Linda Kelly is a registered user.

Oh dear, how quickly this blog has descended into the rat hole! I've followed Tim for more years than most of you have probably lived in this valley. I'm surprised at the tone of this post, as I know him to usually be thoughtful and careful in his posts.
While he is not a close personal acquaintance, I have met him, and found him to be a thoughtful and reasonable person, with a long, respectable history in the Tri-Valley.

I'm not comfortable with this post, have not been comfortable with the tenor of politics for at least the past four years. But the harshness and vitriol of these remarks is over the top. I expect truthful, inciteful blogs and stories, not angry accusing ones.
We're all under a cloud of stress and uncertainty. This usually joyous season is finding all of us pressured to change our expectations, and none of us, me included, likes it a lot.
Maybe Tim came down too hard on Senator Swalwell. Maybe Senator Swalwell was less than discerning about who he dated. Try to put in it perspective. He wasn't married, he had a right to date. He's not the first man to have been bamboozled by a pretty woman, for goodness sake!
I'd be willing to bet most of you gentlemen who are so quick to jump on the "how could he?" bandwagon have had at least one such close encounter with an inappropriate liaison in your past. You probably moved away, he apparently moved away, so let him move on, as you have done.
Tim is a well-respected, experienced journalist. He has always sought to inform with honesty and accuracy. I'm willing to cut him some slack on this one, while at the same time feeling he let his conservatism get the better of him. I read it, as all of you and I'm sure many others did as well. Calls for his firing are over the top, in my opinion, but then I'm an old lady who happens to be a Libra (if you believe in that astrology stuff) who tries to assess both sides of a story before making a judgment. I'll read subsequent posts with eyes wide open, but I'm not ready to send him out to pasture just yet. He's a smart enough guy that I think he'll know when it's time to go and do it with dignity. Please have the courtesy to not deny him that. Wouldn't you expect the same of your peers?

Posted by Malcolm Hex, a resident of San Ramon,
on Dec 24, 2020 at 12:31 am

Malcolm Hex is a registered user.

Excuse me Linda, did you read Kevin's first post? He stated the following: “This is your logic and approach as an elder at GraceWay church and other right-wing Trumpist so-called Christian leaders that have resulted in church's decline."

So called Christian leaders? What did this part of Kevin's post have to do with the topic regarding Swalwell? Absolutely nothing. Kevin apparently was not able to add any meaningful dialogue to Tim's post. As a result, Kevin used religion in an attempt to shame him.

Linda, you wrote an opinion piece that I respect; due in large part because you were civil. While we may disagree on some of the things you said, at least you conveyed your thoughts in a respectable manner without attacking Tim.

I think Kevin would be wise to follow your example.

Posted by Rich Buckley, a resident of Livermore,
on Dec 24, 2020 at 8:33 am

Rich Buckley is a registered user.

Whatever, The left wing are frogs boiling in the water on their own stove. They are comfortable and can't perceive their hot tub is at 212-degrees Fahrenheit, and they are now boiling.

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