Attorney General Bill Barr recently sat down for a lengthy interview with Fox News’ Martha MacCallum to discuss a range of issues, and some of his remarks regarding the FBI’s investigation against President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign should have the apparent deep state plotters trembling in fear of being found out.
Not just “mistakes and sloppiness”
MacCallum referenced comments made by former FBI Director James Comey in a separate Fox News interview during which he attempted to downplay the Justice Department Inspector General’s findings of 17 significant “mistakes and omissions” in the FBI’s applications to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court to obtain a warrant to spy on Trump campaign aide Carter Page.
Comey excused the errors as “sloppiness” on the part of the FBI.
But Barr disagreed with Comey’s assessment. “I think there’s some of them [that are] very hard to square with the idea that these were just mistakes and sloppiness,” Barr said. “I have said that a number of these episodes leave open the possibility of inferring bad faith or improper motive.”
The attorney general noted that he had not made a “final determination” in that regard, and suggested that IG Michael Horowitz “pretty well summed it up, which is this could be on the one hand, at the very least, gross incompetence.”
“On the other hand,” he added, “it could also be improper motive, and [Horowitz] was not in a position to make that call. And that’s why we have the U.S. attorney, John Durham, looking into this.”
“Unexplained misconduct” could involve “bad motive”
A moment or two later in the interview, MacCallum again referenced a comment from Comey in which he had dismissed prior remarks from Barr about the FBI’s FISA abuse as being “irresponsible” and speculative for an attorney general to make.
Barr replied, “Well, as I said, I made the same statement effectively and substantively as the inspector general, which is there are unexplained misconduct there. It just can’t be easily explained as to what was going on there. And as he said, it could involve bad motive. And he was not in a position, given the limited scope he has, of making that final determination.”
“So, it’s not speculation,” Barr added. “But, you know, I think there are episodes there that simply cannot be squared with innocent mistakes. And I think people have to come to terms with that.”
Barr also took exception to Comey’s dubious excuse that he’d been too far above the investigation into Trump to know what had occurred, and pointed out that the FBI had “pulled the investigation up to the executive floors, and it was run and bird dogged by a very small group of very high-level officials. And the idea that this was seven layers below him is simply not true.” Watch:
Attorney General Bill Barr goes one-one-one with Martha MacCallum in an exclusive interview. The Attorney General discusses the latest in Trump’s impeachment, fallout from the FISA abuse probe and what is to come from John Durham’s investigation into the Russia probe.
Comey should be worried
Though Attorney General Barr has played somewhat coy in providing details of the status of ongoing investigations, as he should, he nonetheless has let on that his probes have uncovered some interesting details that don’t align with the excuses offered up by prior leaders like Comey.
That should have folks like Comey feeling very nervous that their attempted coup against a duly elected president is on the verge of being exposed.