Attorney General William Barr and U.S. Attorney John Durham expressed their concern over the conclusion of the newly released FISA report, which concludes the FBI launched a surveillance investigation into former Trump aide Carter Page based on uncorroborated evidence funded by Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Committee (DNC).
The FISA report concludes, while the FBI investigation was rife with errors, there is no evidence of political bias or improper motivation that influenced the FBI’s decision to spy on Page.
In remarks revealing Barr’s attitude toward the FISA report’s findings, Barr claims the IG report made clear the FBI launched an out-of-line investigation.
“The Inspector General’s report now makes clear that the FBI launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions that, in my view, were insufficient to justify the steps taken,” Barr said.
Bill Barr is deeply unhappy with the IG report, obviously. Wow. pic.twitter.com/3ArKaGBWwL
— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) December 9, 2019
Barr blasted the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane team for misleading the FISA court and noted that the Department of Justice will “follow all appropriate processes and procedures, including as to any potential disciplinary action” with personnel involved in misleading the secret court.
“FISA is an essential tool for the protection of the safety of the American people. The Department of Justice and the FBI are committed to taking whatever steps are necessary to rectify the abuses that occurred and to ensure the integrity of the FISA process going forward,” he said.
According to Fox News’s Brooke Singman, Durhman made a similar statement saying he did not agree with the report’s conclusions.
“Based on the evidence collected to date, and while our investigation is ongoing, last month we advised the IG that we do not agree with some of the report’s conclusions as to predication and how the FBI case was opened.”
NEW: in a rare statement,US Attorney John Durham says:
"Based on the evidence collected to date,&while our investigation is ongoing, last month we advised the IG that we do not agree with some of the report’s conclusions as to predication and how the FBI case was opened.” #FISA
— Brooke Singman (@BrookeSingman) December 9, 2019
Barr and Durham may be angered by the fact that the FISA report shows evidence of wrongdoing, yet, the IG does not recommend anyone to be held accountable in a court of law.
Republicans Senators asked Inspector General Michael Horowitz for this this report on February 28, 2018. Now, almost two years later, the IG report is finally released only to reveal there was indeed abuse at the highest levels of the U.S. intelligence community, and yet no criminal referrals.
“We found that members of the [counterintelligence] team failed to meet the basic obligation to ensure that the Carter Page FISA applications were ‘scrupulously accurate,'” the report reads. “We identified significant inaccuracies and omissions in each of the four applications – 7 in the first FISA application and a total of 17 by the final renewal application.”
Yet, the IG concluded that this improper behavior deserves no discipline or accountability.
While the IG may be the watchdog and “auditor” of the Department of Justice, it is inevitably up to the Attorney General to decide if anyone will face charges for wrongdoings. The power truly belongs in the hands of Barr and Durhman, not Horowitz.