A Republican congressman has predicted the soon-to-be-released inspector general’s report on the origins of the investigation into Donald Trump’s presidential campaign will reveal serious misconduct.
Rep. John Ratcliffe from Texas, who has been briefed on Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s report, said it will likely be released in early December and expose Justice Department wrongdoing.
‘We know this – the report is supposedly 500 pages. It doesn’t take an inspector general 500 pages to say that everything was done correctly and properly,’ Ratcliffe said during an interview on Fox News on Sunday. ‘The IG report is going to find that there were problems.’
Horowitz is probing whether proper procedure was followed in obtaining a FISA warrant to surveil Trump campaign advisor Carter Page, and how British ex-spy Christopher Steele’s ‘dirty dossier’ became key FBI evidence.
Rep. John Ratcliffe from Texas said the IG report will likely be released in early December and expose Justice Department wrongdoing
Ratcliffe said the report would be ‘an indictment of Adam Schiff’ (center) for defending DOJ and FBI officials from Republican criticism
Inspector General Michael Horowitz (above) provided a draft copy of the report to Attorney General William Barr in September, and it is now undergoing declassification review
Ratcliffe said that Democrats fear that the report will come out before they impeach their impeachment inquiry, which is being led by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff.
‘I think it’s going to be an indictment of Adam Schiff, who has written his own FISA rebuttal memo in 2018 saying how dare Republicans criticize people like Peter Strozk, Lisa Page and Andy McCabe, and Bruce Ohr, who have done nothing wrong,’ Ratcliffe said.
Strozk and Page, key figures in the Trump-Russia investigation, were ousted from the FBI after text messages revealed their secret love affair and anti-Trump sentiments.
McCabe, who signed some of the Carter Page FISA warrants, was fired as FBI deputy director after an internal investigation found he lied about feeding information to the media.
Ohr, who was Steele’s pipeline for feeding information to the FBI and DOJ, remains employed by the Justice Department.
‘The Democrats are racing to get through this impeachment as quickly as possible,’ Ratcliffe said in the interview.
‘They know that the inspector general’s report is likely to be damning about the origins of the 2016 investigation into the Trump campaign, the role that the Obama-Biden administration officials played in that,’ he said.
Andy McCabe, who signed some of the Carter Page FISA warrants, was fired as FBI deputy director after an internal investigation found he lied about feeding information to the media
Peter Strozk (left) and Lisa Page (right), key figures in the Trump-Russia probe, were ousted from the FBI after text messages revealed their secret love affair and anti-Trump sentiments
The IG report is currently undergoing a final review ahead of its public release.
Horowitz told Congress in a letter last month that he did not expect a lengthy review period and that he intended to make as much of the report public as possible, with minimal redactions.
The inspector general provided a draft copy to Attorney General William Barr in September, and the Justice Department has since been conducting a classification review.
Horowitz’s team has reviewed over one million records and conducted more than 100 interviews, including several who were interviewed in the last few months, the inspector general has told Congress.
The investigation is one of several inquiries into the origins of the FBI’s investigation into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia.
Barr, meanwhile, has appointed U.S. Attorney John Durham to conduct a separate investigation that has since turned into a criminal matter, according to a person familiar with the situation. It’s unclear what potential crime is being looked at.
Durham, the U.S. attorney for Connecticut, has previously led investigations into the FBI’s cozy relationship with Boston mobsters such as James ‘Whitey’ Bulger and the CIA’s use of tough interrogation techniques on terrorism suspects.
The Justice Department has said Trump recently made several calls at Barr’s request to foreign leaders, including Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, to help the attorney general with the current Durham probe of the investigation.
U.S. Attorney John Durham (above) has been appointed to conduct a separate investigation into the origins of the Trump-Russia probe, that has since turned into a criminal matter
Barr also traveled with Durham to Italy in August and September, and the two met with Italian intelligence officials to seek information about the activities of FBI agents assigned there, Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte has said.
It was in Italy that George Papadopoulos, who served as a foreign policy adviser to Trump’s campaign, was told by a mysterious Maltese professor, Joseph Mifsud, that Russia had ‘dirt’ on Clinton in the form of the stolen emails.
The FBI says it opened its probe into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia after Papadopoulos gabbed to Australian diplomats about what he’d heard about the stolen emails.
Papadopoulos later pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his conversations with Mifsud.
In his interview, Ratcliffe said that investigators withheld exculpatory information about Papadopolous from the courts.
Mysterious Maltese professor Joseph Mifsud (above) met with George Papadopolous in Rome in 2016, feeding the Trump aide information about stolen Clinton emails
George Papadopoulos (above with wife), who served as a foreign policy adviser to Trump’s campaign, has said that evidence in his favor was withheld from the courts by investigators
There are reports that Papadopolous was approached by an informant wearing a wire, who tried to entice him into a criminal conspiracy involving Russia, but was rebuffed by Papadopolous.
Mifsud’s wherabouts have remained a mystery, but four days ago an audio recording purporting to be his voice was sent in an encrypted file to the Italian publication Adnkronos.
‘First of all I would like to say that I have absolutely no contact with friends and family and that I have not had contact with friends and family for several months,’ the voice on the recording says.
‘It has been almost two years now that the whole matter has exploded and been presented to the world media and on the world stage as if I had something to do with matters concerning countries or had I tried to infiltrate it, it is absolutely absurd,’ says the voice.