Former Obama administration officials who believe the FBI’s “very disturbing” infiltration of President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign was “normal or was justified” are “just nuts,” former deputy special counsel Solomon Wisenberg said Tuesday night on Fox News’ “The Ingraham Angle.”
Trump directed the Department of Justice Sunday to investigate whether the Obama administration “infiltrated or surveilled” his campaign for “political purposes.” The president’s demand was met with both scorn and alarm from two key Obama appointees, former Director of National Intelligence (DNI) James Clapper and former CIA Director John Brennan.
But Wisenberg (shown above, left), former deputy special counsel for Kenneth Starr’s Whitewater-Lewinsky investigation of former President Bill Clinton, rebuked the former intelligence officials for pretending that their conduct was not “highly improper.”
“I won’t say it’s unprecedented, because there have been dirty tricks in campaigns, and we know what [former] President [Richard] Nixon did. But this is very, very disturbing stuff,” he warned.
“Anybody who pretends that this is normal or was justified, based on what we know, is just nuts,” Wisenberg added. “To do an operation like this, you’d better have had phenomenal — and I mean phenomenal — information. And I don’t think they had it.”
The attorney told Fox News host Laura Ingraham that “whether it’s one person or two people, Laura, it’s a spy. It doesn’t matter whether it’s somebody in the campaign in New York or somebody who’s operating from overseas.”
“This isn’t somebody who’s just sitting around and with his eyes and ears open waiting to see what somebody says,” Wisenberg added. “These are proactive measures, and this is very disturbing.”
Clapper claimed during an appearance Tuesday on ABC’s “The View” that FBI officials “were not” spying on the Trump campaign.
“They were spying — a term I don’t particularly like — on what the Russians were doing,” Clapper insisted.
Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) noted earlier on “The Ingraham Angle” that he has known Clapper for years.
“I am astounded how bad he looks now. I’m astounded how dishonest he looks,” Gingrich said. “I think what happened was people like Clapper and the former director of the Central Intelligence Agency — all these guys thought they could get away with this because Hillary was going to win. And when Hillary won, the fix would be in, everything would be covered up.”
“Around 10 o’clock on election night, they all began to realize this could get really bad,” Gingrich added. “And they were shifting gears from protecting [2016 Democratic presidential nominee] Hillary [Clinton] — which had been their job for two years — to trying to destroy Trump. Now you’re watching people who, I think, in every case are in danger of going to jail.”
What happened to Trump’s campaign officials “is serious, and it’s clearly improper,” Wisenberg insisted. Noting that he has defended both special counsel Robert Mueller and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein against attacks from Republicans during the probe’s course, Wisenberg still emphasized that Trump’s critics should not have allowed the Obama administration off the hook so easily.
“But the problem with the other side is it’s all black or white for them, and there can’t be anything wrong with what the Obama people did,” Wisenberg said. “It’s very clearly — anybody who knows the criminal law system, the intelligence system knows — that this was highly improper.”
Attorney Harmeet Dhillon (shown above, right), founder of the Dhillon Law Group Inc. and Republican National Committeewoman for California, told Ingraham that “revisionist history” is rampant among Democrats because they are “quickly retreating and scrambling and trying to sow obfuscation here about their true intentions.”
“When we talk about comparing this to Watergate, Watergate was the president being involved potentially in the coverup of something that occurred at a very low level. This is a completely different situation,” Dhillon said. “The coverup is the Democrats trying to throw mud at the Trump campaign.”