Nancy Pelosi had some harsh words for Attorney General William Barr on Wednesday, saying she no longer has trust in him after Barr’s statement that he believes intelligence agencies may have improperly spied on Donald Trump’s campaign during the 2016 election.
Pelosi told The Associated Press that she had concerns about how Barr relayed the findings of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, saying it appeared Barr was working directly on behalf of the president.
“He is not the attorney general of Donald Trump. He is the attorney general of the United States,” Pelosi said.
“I don’t trust Barr, I trust Mueller.”
Congressional Democrats have been trying to obtain the Mueller report, which so far has remained in Barr’s hands. They wrote a letter to Barr asking that the report be released and reserved the authority to subpoena it if Barr did not share it with them.
Barr has since announced that he will release a redacted copy of the report, but his new claims appear to have fractured the relationship with Democrats even further. In Senate testimony on Wednesday, Barr raised the idea that “spying did occur” on Trump’s presidential campaign, a claim long held by Trump himself but disputed by intelligence agencies. Barr brought up the idea of investigating these claims.
AP Interview: Pelosi: 'I don't trust Barr; I trust Mueller' https://t.co/s1EZI6KEXu— Lisa Kennedy Tucker (@LisaKennedyTuc3) April 10, 2019
Other Democrats have joined Nancy Pelosi in slamming William Barr for his insinuation that the Obama administration may have spied on the Trump campaign. Senator Mark Warner, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, told reporters that he was “flabbergasted” by Barr’s statements and believes the attorney general was purposely trying to conflate normal intelligence gathering with spying.
Warner added that the statements were a detriment to people working in American intelligence agencies.
“When you start linking spying with law enforcement or the intelligence community, that sets off red flags everywhere,” Warner told reporters, via NBC News. “And that’s why I think he does a disservice to the men and women who work in the Department of Justice and the FBI, who if they had not started a counterintelligence investigation into Russia’s intervention in the 2016 election, they would be skewered and rightfully so.”
Nancy Pelosi has not been as aggressive as some of her Democratic peers who are calling for Donald Trump’s impeachment, telling The Associated Press that she believes impeachment is too divisive for the country, and instead she would rather focus on seeing the Russia report.