U.S. Attorney John Durham reportedly is under pressure to complete his investigation into the origins of the FBI’s counterintelligence probe directed against the Trump campaign by the end of the summer.
If Durham doesn’t finish by then, however, he might wait until after the November election to release his findings, Fox News reported, based on two unnamed sources familiar with the investigation.
Attorney General William Barr tapped Durham, the U.S. attorney in Connecticut, to investigate the origins of the FBI’s Russia probe, deemed Crossfire Hurricane, in May 2019.
The move came a month after Barr testified before Congress that he believed “spying did occur” against the Trump campaign in 2016. The question, the AG observed, was whether it was properly predicated.
Fox News reported Durham is “working expeditiously” to complete his inquiry by the end of the summer, “but that several lines of investigation are not yet complete.”
“He believes it’s critical to do them,” one source said. “He is feeling more pressure to get this done and wrapped up.”
The source added that Durham doesn’t want his report to be viewed as political, and the closer it gets to November might prompt him to“punt it to after the election.”
Barr told Fox News last month he was “very troubled” by what had been called to his attention as a result of the investigation.
“Among other issues, Durham is reviewing whether federal agencies abused their surveillance powers to pursue figures associated with the Trump campaign,” according to Fox.
In December, the presiding judge with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court rebuked the FBI and DOJ for misrepresentations made in warrants to surveil 2016 Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.
“The frequency with which representations made by FBI personnel turned out to be unsupported or contradicted by information in their possession, and with which they withheld information detrimental to their case, calls into question whether information contained in other FBI applications is reliable,” Judge Rosemary M. Collyer wrote in a public order.
Both former FBI Director James Comey and former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe signed FISA warrants to surveil Page.
In a series of tweets on Thursday, President Donald Trump voiced his frustration with the slowness of the wheels of justice.
“We have a totally corrupt previous Administration, including a President and Vice President who spied on my campaign, AND GOT CAUGHT…and nothing happens to them,” Trump wrote.
….No Republican Senate Judiciary response, NO “JUSTICE”, NO FBI, NO NOTHING. Major horror show REPORTS on Comey & McCabe, guilty as hell, nothing happens. Catch Obama & Biden cold, nothing. A 3 year, $45,000,000 Mueller HOAX, failed – investigated everything….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 9, 2020
“We catch the other side SPYING on my campaign, the biggest political crime and scandal in U.S. history, and NOTHING HAPPENS. But despite this, I have done more than any President in history in first 3 1/2 years!” he added.
A note released last month, written by disgraced former FBI counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok, suggests that both former President Barack Obama and former Vice President Joe Biden were well aware of the FBI’s investigation of incoming national security adviser Michael Flynn and even offered input concerning it during an Oval Office meeting in early January 2017.
In May, Barr told reporters he does not expect any criminal investigations stemming from Durham’s probe to include either Obama or Biden.
Barr: As to President Obama and VP Biden, whatever their level of involvement, based on the information I have today I don’t expect Mr. Durham’s work will lead to a criminal investigation of either man. Our concern over potential criminality is focused on others pic.twitter.com/iCAfFgyG8H
— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) May 18, 2020
“As to President Obama and VP Biden, whatever their level of involvement, based on the information I have today I don’t expect Mr. Durham’s work will lead to a criminal investigation of either man,” Barr said. “Our concern over potential criminality is focused on others.”
Last month, however, the attorney general said recognizable names are being investigated, but he did not get specific.
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