In May 2019, U.S. Attorney John Durham was tapped by Attorney General Bill Barr to conduct an “investigation of the investigators” and get to the bottom of alleged spying on the Trump campaign in 2016 as well as the incoming administration.
Now, according to a recent interview Barr gave to Bret Baier of Fox News’ Special Report, Durham’s probe may be coming to a head — and “some” of the names that turned up will apparently be “familiar” to many Americans.
Durham probe gains steam
According to Fox, Barr told Baier that in spite of the coronavirus pandemic, Durham and his team have been “working very aggressively to move forward.” He also said that a “report” from Durham wasn’t the main goal of the probe, but rather, it’s to find evidence of criminal wrongdoing for which accountability could be sought.
The AG noted that there were two main aspects to Durham’s probe, the first being the FBI’s 2016 effort to investigate the Trump campaign with only a “very thin, slender reed as a basis,” with Barr adding that officials “seem to have ignored all the exculpatory evidence that was building up and continued pell-mell to push it forward.”
The second concern referenced by Barr was the fact that those investigations continued under the new administration even as it was “painfully obvious” that there was nothing there to investigate.
Baier then noted the criticism Barr has received for allegedly being too “political” and wondered aloud if Durham’s findings would further fuel those complaints. The attorney general, for his part, acknowledged that possibility, but said that while top figures like former President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden weren’t being looked at criminally, “some of” the names of those being investigated have names Americans are “familiar with.”
Barr “very troubled”
“Here’s the thing,” Barr explained to Baier, according to Fox. “For the first time in American history, police organizations and the national security organizations were used to spy on a campaign, and there was no basis for it. The media largely drove that — and all kinds of sensational claims were being made about the president that could have affected the election.” Barr went on:
And then later on, in his administration, there were actions taken that really appear to be efforts to sabotage his campaign, and that has to be looked at. And if people want to say that I’m political because I am looking at those potential abuses of power, so be it. But that’s the job of the attorney general.
Asked to characterize what he has seen thus far of Durham’s investigation, Barr would only say that he’s been “very troubled,” though he declined to offer any specifics.
Following the process
Later, following some discussion of “unmasking,” the case against former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, and the fabrication of evidence against Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, Barr took a moment to address the demands from many for immediate arrests and prosecutions of suspected wrongdoers.
“We can’t discuss future charges,” Barr said. “But I have to say that I do find a little irritating, you know, the propensity in the American public on all sides of the political spectrum when they see something they think could be a criminal violation, I say, why hasn’t this person been indicted again?”
“And, you know, there’s the old saying that that the wheels of justice grind slow, and they do grind slow because we have due process and we follow the process,” he added. “But people should not draw from the fact that no action has been taken yet, that that means that people or people are going to get away with wrongdoing.” Watch Barr’s discussion with Baier below: