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Barr says ‘I think spying did occur’ against Trump campaign

Barr says ‘I think spying did occur’ against Trump campaign”

The topic of the House appropriations subcommittee hearing is the Justice Department's budget, and Barr's prepared remarks sent to the committee on Monday focused on funding requests for immigration enforcement and to combat violent crime and opioid addiction, not mentioning Mueller's report at all. Further, Mueller did not "exonerate" the president of obstructing justice, according to Barr, who stated that the report "sets out evidence on both sides of the question".

Democratic leadership has been loathe to even discuss impeachment, and with Mueller's conclusions in his final report now public, as characterized by Barr, the chances of successfully removing Trump from office seem even more remote than they were before.

On Tuesday, Barr told members of Congress in his first public appearance since receiving Special Counsel Robert Mueller's report that his earlier projection of releasing a version by mid-April still stood.

US Attorney General William Barr has said that he expects to release a redacted version of the special counsel's Trump-Russia investigation report "within a week".

The chairman of the subcommittee, Democratic Rep. Jose Serrano of NY, also said there were unanswered questions, including "serious concerns about the process by which you formulated your letter; and uncertainty about when we can expect to see the full report".

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On Wednesday he said, "It was started illegally".

"I think spying on a political campaign is a big deal", Barr said.

"I don't intend at this stage to send the full unredacted report to the committee", Barr told a House of Representatives Appropriations subcommittee.

Democrats said they were concerned that Barr's letter portrayed the investigation's findings in an overly favorable way for Trump. Every single thing about it.

LUCAS: Well, the Justice Department's inspector general is looking into alleged surveillance abuses in the Russian Federation investigation.

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CHANG: OK. So other than the timeline of the release, what else did we learn from Barr today on the Mueller report? "The question is whether it was predicated, adequately predicated", meaning whether it was legally justified.

"I'm glad to talk to Chairman Nadler and Chairman Graham as to whether they feel they need more information and if there's a way we can accommodate that", Barr said.

That warrant included a reference to research that was conducted by an ex-British spy who was funded by Democrats to look into Trump's ties to Russian Federation. The letter on the 29th, I don't believe that was reviewed by Mr. Mueller or that he participated in drafting that letter. Barr and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein concluded the evidence Mueller presented did not amount to an obstruction charge.

Though he said the document will be redacted to withhold negative information about peripheral figures in the investigation, he said that would not apply to Trump, an officeholder and someone central to the probe.

"While "coverup" might be too strong a word to describe what the administration is planning", Waldman mused, "what is clear is that they will be carefully managing the information the public gets to see in order to make sure that the narrative of President Trump's supposed innocence prevails".

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