AG Barr: 'Spying did occur' on Trump campaign

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'I think spying on a political campaign is a big deal - it's a big deal, ' Barr said.

"It is the attorney general who has the authority to indict, prosecute, or not prosecute", Dershowitz said. Yes, I think spying did occur. "I think he is doing exactly the right thing".

That is a change from Barr's past statement just 11 days ago when he said in a letter sent to the chairmen of the House and Senate Judiciary committees.

Calling this a "big deal", Barr plans to get to the bottom of what originally sparked the Mueller investigation in July 2016.

This is an interesting development when you consider that President Donald Trump previously claimed, without evidence, that the Obama administration wiretapped Trump Tower during the 2016 campaign.

Barr said he wasn't opening a broad investigation into the FBI - vouching for the bureau and current Director Christopher Wray - but added that "there was probably a failure by a group of leaders there at the upper echelon". The CIA used at least one informer to collect information about it. Speaking to a House appropriations subcommittee, Barr also said on Tuesday that the use of surveillance would be the subject of a report this summer by DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz. "I have not seen the Mueller report, I have not read the Mueller report", he said at the White House. The FBI had placed confidential informants in direct contact with members of the campaign, according to reports.

Caputo said he only learned the individual was an Federal Bureau of Investigation informant after he sat down with investigators for Special Counsel Robert Mueller. "I'm not saying it wasn't", he said. Barr has circulated the legislation to the Department of Justice for review and comment.

Congressional Democrats have launched a counteroffensive against President Trump's "Muslim ban". What they did was against our Constitution and everything we stand for, ' Trump said.

In the March 24 letter, Barr said that Mueller's investigation did not establish that members of Trump's election campaign conspired with Russian Federation. He was discussing the allegations, common in right-wing media, that the Obama administration improperly spied on Trump's campaign, possibly as a part of the Russian Federation investigation that eventually was taken over by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

Barr responded that he planned on "reviewing both the genesis and the conduct of intelligence activities directed against - at the Trump campaign during 2016".

"I need to explore that ..."

Barr said he can't do that, but did promise senators more access to the investigation when it comes to the grand jury material. The FBI relied on the notorious Steele dossier, funded by the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

Associates of Trump's campaign, such as Carter Page and George Papadopoulos, were targeted by a series of unusual meetings involving intelligence assets.