Fired FBI Director James Comey claims Attorney General William Barr is guilty of “echoing conspiracy theories” during a recent CBS interview, in what is the longtime law enforcement officer’s latest attack on the Trump administration.
“Bill Barr on CBS offers no facts. An AG should not be echoing conspiracy theories. He should gather facts and show them. That is what Justice is about,” Comey wrote in a tweet on Saturday afternoon, failing to elaborate on what Barr purportedly amplified that was conspiratorial.
In an interview with CBS This Morning, Barr discussed special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into now-debunked collusion between the 2016 Trump campaign and Russia. The attorney general disagreed with Mueller’s Wednesday statement, in which he said he was bound by Justice Department policy not to determine whether President Donald Trump committed obstruction of justice.
Barr told CBS News chief legal correspondent Jan Crawford:
I personally felt he could’ve reached a decision. He could have reached a conclusion. The opinion says you cannot indict a president while he is in office, but he could’ve reached a decision as to whether it was criminal activity. But he had his reasons for not doing it, which he explained and I am not going to, you know, argue about those reasons.
Further, Barr stated the Justice Department found “many of the instances” that the special counsel found “would not amount to obstruction” as a matter of law.
“[W]e didn’t agree with… a lot of the legal analysis in the report. It did not reflect the views of the Department. It was the views of a particular lawyer or lawyers, and so we applied what we thought was the right law,” the nation’s chief legal officer explained.
“The bottom line was that Bob Mueller identified some episodes,” added Barr. “He did not reach a conclusion. He provided both sides of the issue, and his conclusion was he wasn’t exonerating the president, but he wasn’t finding a crime either.”
Of course, this is not the first time Comey has harshly criticized Barr. The fired FBI director accused him of “sliming his own department” after Barr said that the government engaged in spying on U.S. citizens.
“The AG should stop sliming his own Department,” Comey tweeted on May 19th. “If there are bad facts, show us, or search for them professionally and then tell us what you found.”