New blow to Donald Trump as Bill Barr privately warns Durham probe into origins of Russia investigation will NOT indict anyone or even issue a report before election – after president demanded charges for Joe Biden and Barack Obama
- Bill Barr has told top Republicans the results of the investigation into the origins of the Russia probe will not be released before the election
- That is sure to infuriate President Trump
- Trump said Thursday he has spoken to the attorney general about the evidence in John Durham’s probe into the origins of the Russia investigation
- ‘And I say, Bill, we’ve got plenty, you don’t need any more,’ he said
- He said Barr should indict Barack Obama and Joe Biden
Attorney General Bill Barr has privately told top Republicans that the results of the Justice Department’s investigation into the origins of the Russia probe will not be released before the election, an outcome sure to infuriate President Donald Trump.
Trump has demanded former President Barack Obama and his then-Vice President Joe Biden be charged for ‘spying’ on his 2016 campaign – in reference to the government’s counter intelligence investigation into whether his campaign was coordinating with the Russians.
In an interview with Fox Business on Thursday, Trump he has spoken to Barr about the high-stakes probe being conducted by U.S. Attorney John Durham and received assurances the government has ‘plenty’ of evidence to bring charges against his main political rivals.
But, in private, Barr has said not to expect further indictments or a comprehensive report before Nov. 3, Axios reported.
‘This is the nightmare scenario. Essentially, the year and a half of arguably the number one issue for the Republican base is virtually meaningless if this doesn’t happen before the election,’ a GOP congressional aide told Axios.
Trump’s admission he spoke to Barr about the probe, if accurate, would be a breach of normal firewalls between prosecutors and the executive in a politically charged investigation.
The president’s allies hoped Durham’s findings would help boost Trump’s re-election bid. Trump has repeatedly charged he has been the victim of a ‘witch hunt’ and a ‘deep state’ working against him.
But a year and a half into the investigation by Durham, a career prosecutor, there has been only one criminal case: a former FBI lawyer who pleaded guilty to altering a government email about former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, who was a target of secret FBI surveillance.
President Donald Trump said Thursday he has spoken to Attorney General Bill Barr about the evidence in John Durham’s probe fo alleged FBI misconduct, and said if the government doesn’t bring charges ‘I won’t forget it’
In his 55-minute interview with Fox Business’ Maria Bartiromo, in which he declared himself cured of COVID and twice called Democratic vice presidential candidate Kamala Harris a ‘monster,’ Trump also repeatedly blasted Hillary Clinton for her email scandal that was a feature of the 2016 campaign.
He also said Barr should charge Obama and Biden with spying on his campaign.
‘Unless Bill Barr indicts these people for crimes, the greatest political crime in the history of our country, then we’re going to get little satisfaction unless I win and we’ll just have to go, because I won’t forget it,’ Trump said.
‘But these people should be indicted, this was the greatest political crime in the history of our country and that includes Obama and it includes Biden. These are people that spied on my campaign and we have everything,’ Trump said.
‘Unless Bill Barr indicts these people for crimes, the greatest political crime in the history of our country, then we’re going to get little satisfaction unless I win and we’ll just have to go, because I won’t forget it,’ Trump said
Trump railed against Hillary Clinton for her email scandal and said he would ‘get involved’ in her prosecution
Trump said crimes were committed against his campaign, and said ‘that includes Obama and it includes Biden,’ Trump’s 2020 opponent
‘But these people should be indicted, this was the greatest political crime in the history of our country and that includes Obama and it includes Biden,’ Trump said in reference to the former president
Describing the government’s evidence, Trump said: ‘Now they say they have much more, OK? And I say, Bill, we’ve got plenty, you don’t need any more. We’ve got so much, Maria, even — just take a look at the Comey report, 78 pages of kill, done by Horowitz, and I have a lot of respect for Horowitz, and he said prosecute. He recommended prosecute and they didn’t prosecute. I was — I couldn’t believe it, but they didn’t do it, because they said we have much bigger fish to fry,’ he said.
He was speaking to Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo. He praised DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz, whose lengthy report included an array of findings critical of the conduct of FBI agents involved in the Russia probe.
Trump also attacked federal prosecutors who obtained a guilty plea from former national security advisor Mike Flynn, and who secured a sentence of longtime Trump advisor Roger Stone. Trump commuted Stone’s sentence before he was to appear in prison. Former campaign chair Paul Manafort is in home confinement after getting a 7 1/2 year sentence on corruption charges.
‘Well, that’s OK, they indicted Flynn for lying and he didn’t lie. They destroyed many lives, Roger Stone, over nothing. They destroyed lives. Look at Manafort, they sent in a black book, it was a phony black book, phony, they made up a black book of cash that he got from Ukraine or someplace and he didn’t get any cash. It was a phony book,’ Trump said.
Barr admonished Trump to avoid public comments after his remarks and tweets about the Stone case, and reportedly argued against the commutation of his sentence after conviction for lying to Congress about his contacts with WikiLeaks and witness tampering.
On Thursday, Trump spoke repeatedly about the government’s evidence, having previously said he tries to keep his distance from prosecutions. He indicated his declassification of materials was designed to aide prosecution.
‘Look, we have all the evidence in the world, in addition to that I released everything, every document, I don’t care what it pertains to, I released everything. I’ve declassified, I’m the only one in the country that has the power to do that. I’ve declassified everything. I did it a year ago, actually, for Bill Barr. I declassified everything so they would have no — so there’s not a document they can’t have,’ Trump said.
‘But, it’s still not that easy, you have a deep state, you have a group of people that don’t want to have documents shown, which tells you bad thing, you know, but they — they have to give them ultimately and we’re getting them, you know,’ he said.
The president indicated Barr’s own reputation was on the line.
‘To be honest, Bill Barr’s gonna go down either as the greatest attorney general in the history of the country or he’s gonna go down as a very sad, sad situation. I mean, I’ll be honest with you. He’s got all the information he needs. They wanna get more, more, more, they keep getting more, I say: ‘You don’t need any more. You got more stuff than anybody’s ever had.”
Trump also said he would ‘get involved’ with prosecuting Clinton, having vowed to ‘lock her up’ during his 2016 campaign.
‘I’ve never seen such liars as this, they’re worse than crooked Hillary, she was worse in other ways. She was worse when she delete 33,000 e-mails illegally and she should be indicted for that,’ Trumps aid.
‘I said I’m going to not get involved, but I’m going to have to get involved,’ Trump said.
Durham, who has a long career as a federal prosecutor, was nominated by Trump to serve as U.S. Attorney for Connecticut.
He’s been involved in several high-profile, politically sensitive cases. In 2009, he led the Justice Department probe into the legality of CIA’s use of so-called ‘enhanced interrogation techniques’ in the torture of detainees during the war on terror.
He has a reputation for being thorough and methodical in his work. He is examining how the FBI’s Russia investigation developed at the direction of Barr, who appointed him to the position in April 2019.
James Comey, as FBI director, authorized Operation Crossfire Hurricane, which was the agency’s counterintelligence investigation into whether Trump’s 2016 campaign colluded with Russian officials trying to interfere in the president election.
It was a joint investigation by the FBI, the CIA and the National Security Agency.
It was sparked by information that George Papadopoulos, an adviser to Trump’s campaign, claimed the Russians had damaging material on Hillary Clinton.
It would ultimately obtain surveillance warrants on Page, and FBI agents questions former Trump national security advisor Mike Flynn at the White House during his short tenure. Flynn would later plead guilty to lying about his contacts with Russia’s ambassador to the U.S. Sergey Kislyak.
It was eventually taken over by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, whose investigation cleared the Trump campaign of any collusion but came to no conclusion as to whether President Trump tried to hamper the special counsel’s probe.