News

Law & the Courts

Barr Says IG ‘Hasn’t Decided the Issue of Improper Motive’ in Report on FBI Russia Probe

Attorney General William Barr in Washington, D.C., December 10, 2019 (Al Drago/Reuters)

Attorney General William Barr pushed back Tuesday on the narrative that Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s report cleared the FBI of political motivation in its investigation of possible collusion between Russia and the 2016 Trump campaign.

“All he said was, people gave me an explanation and I didn’t find anything to contradict it . . . he hasn’t decided the issue of improper motive,” Barr said of Horowitz’s investigation during an exclusive interview with NBC News. “I think we have to wait until the full investigation is done.”

Following the release of the report on Monday, U.S. Attorney John Durham, who was tapped by Barr to lead a wide-ranging probe in the origins of the 2016 investigation, said he did “not agree with” Horowitz’s assertion that the investigation was properly predicated.

“Our investigation has included developing information from other persons and entities, both in the U.S. and outside of the U.S.  Based on the evidence collected to date, and while our investigation is ongoing, last month we advised the Inspector General that we do not agree with some of the report’s conclusions as to predication and how the FBI case was opened,” Durham’s statement reads.

Barr emphasized Durham’s claim in the Tuesday interview and said the report’s conclusions have “not been accurately reported by the press over the last day.”

“From a civil liberties standpoint, the greatest danger to our free system is that the incumbent government use the apparatus of the state . . .  both to spy on political opponents but also to use them in a way that could affect the outcome of an election,” Barr said.

The attorney general added that according to his knowledge, this was “the first time in history” that a presidential campaign was surveilled by the government. Barr added that the evidence did not warrant the investigation in the first place.

“I think our nation was turned on its head for three years based on a completely bogus narrative that was largely fanned and hyped by a completely irresponsible press,” Barr said. “I think there were gross abuses . . . and inexplicable behavior that is intolerable in the FBI.”

“I think that leaves open the possibility that there was bad faith.”

Send a tip to the news team at NR.

Most Popular

The Need to Discuss Black-on-Black Crime

Thomas Abt’s book Bleeding Out (2019) has garnered a fair amount of attention for its proposals to deal with gun violence in mainly black urban neighborhoods. The entire focus of the book is on interventions in high-crime locations to stem the violence, including: hot-spots policing, working with young males at ... Read More

The Need to Discuss Black-on-Black Crime

Thomas Abt’s book Bleeding Out (2019) has garnered a fair amount of attention for its proposals to deal with gun violence in mainly black urban neighborhoods. The entire focus of the book is on interventions in high-crime locations to stem the violence, including: hot-spots policing, working with young males at ... Read More

Jason Isbell’s Alt-Alt-Country Masterpiece

There has long been a chasmic disconnect between the creators and the consumers of Americana music. The Americana songwriter still wants to be Woody Guthrie, but the Americana listener stopped being Tom Joad about 60 years ago. Americana — or alt-country, or folk, or whatever we’re calling it this week — ... Read More

Jason Isbell’s Alt-Alt-Country Masterpiece

There has long been a chasmic disconnect between the creators and the consumers of Americana music. The Americana songwriter still wants to be Woody Guthrie, but the Americana listener stopped being Tom Joad about 60 years ago. Americana — or alt-country, or folk, or whatever we’re calling it this week — ... Read More

Protesting Works. Rioting Doesn’t.

The tragic death of George Floyd on May 25 in Minneapolis has set off massive protests in the city and elsewhere. The protesters point to a video in which a police officer uses his knee to restrain Floyd, applying pressure to his neck for several minutes, as Floyd protests that he can’t breathe. This will ... Read More

Protesting Works. Rioting Doesn’t.

The tragic death of George Floyd on May 25 in Minneapolis has set off massive protests in the city and elsewhere. The protesters point to a video in which a police officer uses his knee to restrain Floyd, applying pressure to his neck for several minutes, as Floyd protests that he can’t breathe. This will ... Read More
Elections

Amy Klobuchar Takes a Big Hit

As Minneapolis burned this week, so too did Amy Klobuchar’s prospects of becoming Joe Biden’s running mate. Just six weeks ago, Klobuchar looked like the frontrunner in the 2020 Democratic veepstakes, but the Minnesota senator happens to be the former top prosecutor in Hennepin County, home to Minneapolis, ... Read More
Elections

Amy Klobuchar Takes a Big Hit

As Minneapolis burned this week, so too did Amy Klobuchar’s prospects of becoming Joe Biden’s running mate. Just six weeks ago, Klobuchar looked like the frontrunner in the 2020 Democratic veepstakes, but the Minnesota senator happens to be the former top prosecutor in Hennepin County, home to Minneapolis, ... Read More