The Republicans had such high hopes for this report, but it fails to deliver.
Courtesy of NBC News:
“We did not find documentary or testimonial evidence that political bias or improper motivation influenced the decisions” to open investigations into four Trump campaign aides, the report says.
At the same time, the report found enough errors — and in at least one case, alleged document tampering by a low-level FBI lawyer — to provide Trump and his allies grist to continue to claim that the investigation was tainted.
Attorney General William Barr wasted no time in doing so, issuing a statement that essentially disputed the IG’s findings and asserting that the FBI did not have proper justification to open the 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.
And in a stunning move, the man Barr appointed to conduct a separate but related investigation, federal prosecutor John Durham, the U.S. attorney in Connecticut, also said in a statement that he disagreed. It is extremely unusual for a federal prosecutor to comment publicly, let alone express a conclusion, about a pending criminal investigation. Durham’s move is likely to draw significant criticism.
“Our investigation is not limited to developing information from within component parts of the Justice Department,” said Durham’s statement. “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.”
Trump slso seems to have purposefully misread the report.
President Trump on Justice Department IG Report: “It’s a disgrace…it’s incredible, far worse than I would have ever thought possible. It’s an embarrassment to our country.” pic.twitter.com/SNXcADB5nO
— CSPAN (@cspan) December 9, 2019
Yeah, that is not at all accurate.
In fact Horowitz uncovered support for Trump within the FBI.
Courtesy of Business Insider:
In his report, published Monday, on the origins of the FBI’s Russia investigation, Horowitz detailed texts between a handling agent and a co-handling agent on November 9, 2016, rejoicing over Trump’s victory the previous day.
“Trump!” the handling agent said.
“Hahaha. S— just got real,” the co-handling agent replied.
“Yes it did,” the handling agent said.
The co-handling agent responded: “I saw a lot of scared MFers on … [my way to work] this morning. Start looking for new jobs fellas. Haha.”
As it turns out FBI agents are people, and they have differing political views, some liked Trump, and some didn’t like Trump.
You know, just like the rest of us.
FBI Director Christopher Wray had this to say about the report:
The Report concludes that the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane investigation and related investigations of certain individuals were opened in 2016 for an authorized purpose and with adequate factual predication. The Report also details instances in which certain FBI personnel, at times during the 2016-2017 period reviewed by the OIG, did not comply with existing policies, neglected to exercise appropriate diligence, or otherwise failed to meet the standard of conduct that the FBI expects of its employees — and that our country expects of the FBI. We are vested with significant authorities, and it is our obligation as public servants to ensure that these authorities are exercised with objectivity and integrity. Anything less falls short of the FBI’s duty to the American people.
Accordingly, the FBI accepts the Report’s findings and embraces the need for thoughtful, meaningful remedial action. I have ordered more than 40 corrective steps to address the Report’s recommendations. Because our credibility and brand are central to fulfilling our mission, we are also making improvements beyond those recommended by the OIG. And where certain individuals have been referred by the OIG for review of their conduct, the FBI will not hesitate to take appropriate disciplinary action if warranted at the completion of the required procedures for disciplinary review.
Unlike Bill Barr, who has now lost his last ounce of credibility, and Trump, who never had any to begin with, Director Wray accepts the findings of the report and has listed actions that he will take to make the agency run more effectively and earn back the trust of the American people.
However do not for an instant think this is over, in fact this is likely just the beginning,.
There are plenty of molehills in this report that conservatives are dying to make into mountains and I imagine Fox News will be fairly bulging with those during tonight’s broadcast and for many days to come.