Attorney General William Barr on Wednesday appeared to back up President Donald Trump’s assertion that the Justice Department “spied” on his presidential campaign.
During his second day of testimony on the Hill, the attorney general also suggested that the Justice Department was gearing up to investigate the origins of the counterintelligence probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election.
“Spying on a political campaign is a big deal,” Barr told senators. “I think spying did occur. The question is whether it was adequately predicated. And I’m not suggesting that it wasn’t adequately predicated. But I need to explore that.”
Barr’s statements are certain to please Trump, who said earlier Wednesday that the origins of the FBI’s investigation amounted to an “attempted coup.” The president has long decried the counterintelligence probe as a “witch hunt” that was launched by officials who were biased against him, citing the approval of a surveillance warrant for Carter Page, a former foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign.
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