Michael Horowitz, a Justice Department Inspector General, has concluded in a report released on Monday, December 9th, that “the FBI decision to open a counter-intelligence probe against the Trump campaign in July 2016 “was sufficient to predicate the investigation” under current FBI rules,” the Wall Street Journal reported. The investigation into alleged abuse of FISA by the FBI and Justice Department lasted almost two years.
The report lists 17 “inaccuracies and inconsistencies” made by the FBI in the FISA application process in an attempt to obtain a surveillance warrant against Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. The errors, along with several other violations, including doctoring evidence and omitting exculpatory facts, were also included in the subsequent renewal applications. The FBI presented an infamous Steele dossier to the FISA court despite CIA warning not to use it as it lacked credibility. IG report confirmed that the dossier was unverified but used by the FBI to justify surveillance. The investigators were “deeply concerned that so many basic and fundamental errors were made by three separate, hand-picked investigative teams,” according to the Daily Wire.
Attorney General William Barr disagreed with these findings and expressed his concern with the FBI handling of the FISA applications. “The Inspector General’s report now makes clear that the FBI launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions that, in my view, were insufficient to justify the steps taken,” Barr responded. He concluded that the Justice Department will take recommendations of the report into account but wait until U.S. Attorney John Durham finishes his investigation into the origins of the inquiry into the Trump campaign.