Politics

Napolitano: Trump Team Surveillance ‘as Widespread as Feared’

Judicial analyst warns time to end 'unconstitutional behavior' of intelligence agencies

Judge Andrew Napolitano said testimony from a pair of Obama administration officials demonstrated government surveillance on President Donald Trump’s team was “as widespread as the president claimed and as widespread as feared,” during an interview Tuesday on “The Laura Ingraham Show.”

Napolitano, senior judicial analyst for Fox News, said former acting Attorney General Sally Yates and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper revealed the “nature and extent” of the surveillance during their testimony Monday.

“Why they gave [Rice] an invitation instead of a subpoena is beyond me.”

“We did learn yesterday that the nature and extent of surveillance on the Trump team was as widespread as the president claimed and as widespread as feared,” Napolitano said, “it went back to 2015, and it began with the British intelligence services.”

Democratic senators posing questions during the hearing largely focused on trying to uncover any evidence of Trump team collusion with the Russians to sway the 2016 election — and largely ignored the controversy over unmasking and leaks.

“We know that there were 1,900 unmaskings. That doesn’t mean 1,900 different people. That means 1,900 communications that could have been — 1,200 of them could have been of General Flynn,” Napolitano noted. “But we do know that a great deal of unmasking went on in that time period and that probably the ringmaster of the unmasking was not at the committee hearing yesterday because she declined her invitation to testify.”

Do you support individual military members being able to opt out of getting the COVID vaccine?

By completing the poll, you agree to receive emails from LifeZette, occasional offers from our partners and that you've read and agree to our privacy policy and legal statement.

Speaking of former National Security Advisor Susan Rice, Napolitano noted that Rice has become the main suspect of ordering potentially improper unmasking and playing a role in illegal leaks. Rice refused to testify at Monday’s hearing.

“Why they gave [Rice] an invitation … instead of a subpoena is beyond me,” Napolitano said. “But there’s too much information being gathered. The intelligence communities have a voracious appetite. There are inadequate controls on them. They have information overload.”

Napolitano noted the various intelligence agencies still gather mass information on American citizens and store it for later examination.

[lz_related_box id=”792626″]

“And thanks to an executive order signed by President Obama — not yet rescinded by President Trump — the intelligence community gathers information and any one of the 17 members of the intelligence community can share it with any one of the other 16. And they do,” Napolitano said.

Somebody shared the unmasked names and information to outlets such as The Washington Post, Napolitano noted, “in order to frustrate Donald Trump, alienate him from Michael Flynn, or begin this long, slow Democrat-orchestrated process of undermining the moral legitimacy of this presidency.”

“I don’t know which, but I know it’s wrong and criminal,” Napolitano concluded. “I don’t see any of that changing except that Donald Trump has been a personal victim of this.”

“Maybe we’ll have a president with a more sober and more constitutional view of it than either of his two predecessors under whom all of this rampant ‘spy on everybody all the time’ unconstitutional behavior began and flourished,” Napolitano said.

Join the Discussion

Comments are currently closed.