Attorney General William Barr was questioned today by republican lawmaker Robert Aderholt about potentially fraudulent DOJ and FBI submissions to the FISA court – to gain a Title-One surveillance warrant against U.S. Person Carter Page.
In a deliberate response AG Barr stated: “The Office of the Inspector General has a pending investigation of the FISA process in the Russia investigation. I expect that will be complete in probably May or June, I am told. More generally, I am reviewing the conduct of the investigation and trying to get my arms around all the aspects of the counterintelligence investigation that was conducted during the summer of 2016.”
The response would indicate AG Barr is taking personal interest in the events behind the July 31st, 2016, origination of the Crossfire Hurricane counterintelligence operation. Additionally, this approach indicates AG Barr’s review is going much further than Inspector General Horowitz; taking the review all the way to the origin of the intelligence community operation.
UPDATE: Bloomberg Reports: Attorney General William Barr has assembled a team to review controversial counterintelligence decisions made by Justice Department and FBI officials, including actions taken during the probe of the Trump campaign in the summer of 2016, according to a person familiar with the matter.
This indicates that Barr is looking into allegations that Republican lawmakers have been pursuing for more than a year — that the investigation into President Donald Trump and possible collusion with Russia was tainted at the start by anti-Trump bias in the FBI and Justice Department.
“I am reviewing the conduct of the investigation and trying to get my arms around all the aspects of the counterintelligence investigation that was conducted during the summer of 2016,” Barr told a House panel on Tuesday.
Barr’s inquiry is separate from a long-running investigation by the Justice Department’s inspector general, said the person, who asked not to be identified discussing sensitive matters. The FBI declined to comment. Barr said he expected the inspector general’s work to be completed by May or June.
The issue came up as Barr testified before a Democratic-controlled House Appropriations subcommittee. Most of the questioning concerned demands for Barr to give lawmakers Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s full report and the evidence behind it. But the issue is sure to get more attention when Barr appears Wednesday before the panel’s GOP-led Senate counterpart. (read more)
Here’s the full exchange: