President Donald Trump said Thursday that he was pleased to hear that Attorney General Bill Barr claimed that there was spying into his 2016 presidential campaign.
“Yes, I am,” Trump told reporters gathered in the Oval Office. “I think what he said was absolutely true. There was absolutely spying into our campaign.”
“I’ll go a step further – in my opinion it was illegal spying and unprecedented spying and something that should never be allowed to happen in our country again. And I think his answer was actually a very accurate one,” he continued.
On Wednesday, Barr told lawmakers on Capitol Hill that he believed the Trump’s presidential campaign was spied on, saying he will be looking into the “genesis” of the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation that began in 2016 of potential ties between the campaign and the Russian government.
“I think spying on a political campaign is a big deal,” Barr said. “I think spying did occur.”
However, the attorney general did not elaborate or provide evidence to bolster his claim.
Former FBI Director James Comey told a cyber conference in California on Thursday that he had “no idea” what Barr was “talking about” when he said there was spying on the Trump campaign, adding that such language is “concerning.”
“I don’t know what he meant because I don’t know of any electronic surveillance aimed – court-ordered electronic surveillance aimed at the Trump campaign so that’s the reason for my confusion,” Comey said.
Trump, on Thursday, said he is “not concerned about anything” when asked about Barr’s decision not to redact any negative information about him in special counsel Robert Mueller’s report when it is submitted to Congress. Barr told lawmakers on Tuesday that he expects to release a redacted version of the Mueller report within a week.
“I’m not concerned about anything because frankly there was no collusion, and there was no obstruction,” Trump said. “It should never happen to a president again.”
Trump added: “You’re just lucky I happen to be the President because a lot of other presidents would have reacted very differently than I’ve reacted” to the Mueller investigation.
“The bottom line is the result is no collusion no obstruction and that’s the way it is,” Trump said, even though Mueller did not render a judgment on obstruction of justice.
CNN’s Laura Jarrett, Evan Perez and Dan Simon contributed to this report.