4 key takeaways from William Barr’s testimony on the Mueller report

Attorney General William P. Barr appears before a House Appropriations subcommittee on Capitol Hill

Attorney General William P. Barr appears before a House Appropriations subcommittee on Capitol Hill

When asked at a Senate hearing why he felt the need to further probe how US intelligence agencies conducted themselves in the Russian Federation investigation, Barr said he thought "spying on a political campaign is a big deal". "Especially the generation that I grew up in... the Vietnam War period, people were concerned about spying on anti-war people and so forth by the government", said Barr. "I think spying did occur", he added.

"I'm sitting in the Roosevelt Room with, like, a judge who had sentenced criminals and a lot of really powerful people and I just sat there, like, 'Oh, s-t, '" she said. Trump said previous year he would "probably" support an earlier version of the STATES Act if it reached his desk-and Barr seems to be echoing that same supportive-but-not-endorsing sentiment.

At the White House on Wednesday, Trump repeated his claim that the investigation was illegal.

That reference to selective editing, of course, concerns special counsel Robert S. Mueller III's report, which Barr has pledged to release within a week, but with some redactions, and without turning over the full report to Congress.

For months Trump acolytes have been framing Mr Mueller's investigation as a witch hunt and the Russian Federation probe as a "deep state" stitch-up from officials who opposed his presidency.

"Once the report is out I'm happy to discuss the process", Barr said.

The internal Justice Department review and redaction of the report continue to be a collaboration between the attorney general and the special counsel, and that process has gone smoothly.

At the Senate Appropriations subcommittee hearing, Democratic Senator Brian Schatz pressed Barr on his use of the term "spying", which he called "unnecessarily inflammatory".

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According to NBC Los Angeles, someone in the home called 911 after opening a certified letter containing a suspicious powder. There were reportedly three people inside of the house when the envelope was opened, one of which is bedridden.

Obama has denied any involvement in the Federal Bureau of Investigation requests to surveil the Trump campaign before the Foreign Intelligence Service Act (FISA) courts, but this denial is extremely disingenuous.

Barr says he wants to pull together the different reviews underway within the Justice Department and see if there are remaining questions that need to be addressed.

Barr's comments Wednesday mirrored much of what he said during his confirmation hearings in January, when he articulated a hands-off policy toward state-legal businesses but was critical of the disparity between federal and state laws.

Barr's characterization appears to confirm that the campaign was indeed spied upon.

"It's entirely possible that Barr will surprise us by redacting very little", Schiff conceded.

At the tail end of Wednesday's hearing, Sen. The CIA used at least one informer to collect information about it. The warrant was obtained based on evidence presented in the so-called "Steele Dossier", a piece of unverified and Democrat-funded opposition research that former FBI Director James Comey admitted he knew was unverified at the time it was presented to the FISA court.

Supporters of the probe insist that USA officials were acting appropriately and in the public interest by investigating claims over the Trump campaign's engagements with Russian-linked figures.

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