On Monday, President Donald Trump implied that former President Barack Obama committed treason over the investigation into Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign’s alleged contacts with Russia.
“Treason. Treason. It’s treason,” Trump told CBN News, saying his team was “spied” in the last election during the Russia probe.
“They’d been spying on my campaign,” Trump said. “Turned out I was right. Let’s see what happens to them now.”
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Trump said he was eager to see the results of U.S. Attorney John Durham’s ongoing investigation into the origins of the Russia investigation, calling him “highly respected” while also making positive remarks about Attorney General William Barr.
“I want to stay out of it because otherwise it’s going to look political,” Trump said. “Let’s see what they come up with.”
The President has long believed that FBI agents who targeted his 2016 presidential campaign over supposed election interference by Russia were motivated by political bias, even calling former special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe a “witch hunt.”
Last year, a DOJ inspector general report issued found that the FBI was not driven by bias.
Legal analyst Elie Honig called Trump’s claim about Obama possibly committing treason “petty and ridiculous.”
“First, all the wiretaps were court-approved,” Honig told The Hill. “Second, there’s no proof Obama had anything to do with those lawful wiretaps. And third, if we need to get technical (and we don’t because there’s nothing there) treason only applies during a declared war.”
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Trump has sought to tie Obama to what he has said are questionable efforts by high ranking officials in the prior administration to undermine his presidential campaign, but the President has yet to offer any evidence of criminal activity.
In May, Barr was asked to address Trump’s similar remarks about Obama at the time, and the AG said he did not expect a criminal investigation of Obama or former vice president Joe Biden to happen.
“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 told the press. “Our concern over potential criminality is focused on others.”
Barr said Sunday on Fox News that he expects feedback from Durham’s probe to become available later this summer.
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