During an appearance on Fox News, former FBI Director James Comey acknowledged that the agency was sloppy in its handling of the FISA application to surveil Carter Page, a 2016 campaign official for then-candidate Donald Trump. Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s recent report on the bureau’s investigation of Donald Trump‘s 2016 presidential campaign revealed the extent of said sloppiness.
On Sunday, Trump took to Twitter to demand an apology from Comey, Breitbart reports.
“So now Comey’s admitting he was wrong. Wow, but he’s only doing so because he got caught red handed. He was actually caught a long time ago. So what are the consequences for his unlawful conduct. Could it be years in jail? Where are the apologies to me and others, Jim?”
Per Politico, Trump also took aim at Horowitz on Sunday, noting that he was appointed by former President Obama. The president claimed that there was “tremendous bias” and “guilt” exposed by the IG report and said that Horowitz couldn’t bring himself to address such alleged bias and guilt.
“Obama knew everything!” Trump ended the tweet.
The IG report concluded that while the FBI was justified to open the investigation into Trump’s campaign, there were numerous incidences of misconduct in the FISA application process. While speaking to Wallace, Comey said that the report cleared the FBI over accusations of illegal spying, treason, and opening an investigation without justification — calling such claims “nonsense.” But Comey also said he was “wrong” to defend the warrant for surveilling Page.
“I was overconfident in the procedures the FBI and Justice had built over 20 years. I thought they were robust enough. It’s incredibly hard to get a FISA. I was overconfident in those. He’s right. There was real sloppiness,” Comey said, per The Hill.
Exclusively on FOX News Sunday: Chris Wallace asks Former FBI Director James Comey if the IG Report vindicates him. Director Comey responds to previous statements he made in 2018 about the Carter Page FISA warrant being handled appropriately: "There was real sloppiness." pic.twitter.com/vPmCV11hRe— FoxNewsSunday (@FoxNewsSunday) December 15, 2019
Comey was also pressed on his characterization of the role Christopher Steele’s dossier played in the FBI’s investigation. Although the 59-year-old lawyer previously suggested the file did not play a central role, the IG report appeared to challenge this claim. Despite this apparent conflict, Comey said that his claim and Horowitz’s conclusion that the dossier played a central role in obtaining the FISA warrant are aligned.
Journalist and author Glenn Greenwald previously attacked the “massive media scandal” he believes is connected to the IG report, suggesting that news outlets place too much faith in security state agents. According to Greenwald, this relationship between the media and the security state is a new phenomenon that helped cover up the abuses detailed by Horowitz’s report.