Trump: 'This Was an Attempted Overthrow' of a U.S. President

By Michael W. Chapman | December 11, 2019 | 1:41pm EST
(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

( -- Commenting on the Inspector General's report about FBI actions in 2016-17 to spy on the Trump campaign because of alleged "Russia collusion," President Trump at the White House on Monday said the FBI "fabricated evidence" and "lied to the courts." He added that this was an "attempted overthrow" of the presidency.

The Inspector General's (IG) report confirms that a senior FBI lawyer doctored at least one email -- making it say the opposite of the truth -- that was presented to the surveillance court to get a warrant. The report also documents that the FBI withheld evidence -- "inaccuracies and omissions" -- in its applications to the court on at least 17 occasions.

In addition, the report confirms that the FBI relied on the discredited Steele dossier to make its applications to the court; the dossier was paid for by the Democratic National Committee (DNC), a fact that was not revealed to the court.  (For information on the FISA court, see here.)  

When asked for his reaction to the IG report, President Trump said, "They fabricated evidence and they lied to the courts, and they did all sorts of things to have it go their way. This is something we can never allow to happen again."

"The report actually, and especially when you look into the details of the report are far worse than anything I would have imagined," said the president. "What they were doing and what they would have done, if I didn’t make a certain move, a certain move that was a very important move because it would have been even worse, if that’s possible."

“They might have been able to succeed," said Trump.  "This was an overthrow of government -- this was an attempted overthrow and a lot of people were in on it. And they got caught. They got caught red-handed."

DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz.  (Getty Images)
DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz. (Getty Images)

"I look forward to the [U.S. Attorney] Durham report, which is coming out in the not too distant future," said Trump. "He’s got his own information, which is this information plus, plus, plus."

“It’s an incredible thing that happened and we're lucky we caught them," added the president. "I think I'm going to put this down as one of our great achievements. Because what we found and what we saw never, ever should this happen again in our country."

Attorney General William Barr said there was "a clear abuse of the FISA process."

Attorney General William Barr.  (Getty Images)
Attorney General William Barr. (Getty Images)

"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," said Barr. 

In an interview with NBC News, Barr said this was the "first time in history" the federal government (FBI) used "counter-intelligence techniques against a presidential campaign."

Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said of the FBI's malfeasance, "What has been described as a few irregularities becomes a massive criminal conspiracy over time to defraud the FISA court, to illegally surveil an American citizen, and to keep an operation open against a sitting president of the United States, violating every norm known to the rule of law."

"People at the highest level of our government took the law into their own hands," said Graham. "And when I say defraud the FISA court, I mean it."

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. (Getty Images)
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. (Getty Images)

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