Nunes on Mueller Report, Hype and False Charges: ‘Biggest Culprit Has Been Mainstream Media’

Lawmaker spoke to Fox Business Network's Maria Bartiromo

Image Credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images & Win McNamee/Getty Images

Speaking on “Mornings with Maria” on the Fox Business Network on Thursday, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) shared his plans to open an investigation into the origins of special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.

He told anchor Maria Bartiromo, “We are prepared now to at least submit our first criminal referral,” adding it might occur “by the end of next week.”

Nunes (shown above right) accused the FBI and the Department of Justice (DOJ) of making false claims while those agencies investigated alleged Trump-Russia collusion during the 2016 election season.

Nunes served as House Intelligence Committee chair in the previous session of Congress.

“My major concern now is that the FBI and DOJ falsely claimed that this investigation didn’t begin until late July,” Nunes told Bartiromo. “We now know for certain that that’s not true. We’re still trying to get to the bottom of that. Of course, there are still documents that need to come out, but we are prepared and are now drafting a criminal referral.”

Related: The Collusion Delusion: Look Who Said What (and Should Be Ashamed)

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He also said he had “wanted to wait until the Mueller report came out so that we could just — if there was anything in there that might be of interest — but I think we’re prepared now to at least submit our first criminal referral. We think it would grab everybody that we need to grab to make sure that there’s a proper investigation done or at least it’s our referral over to DOJ,” he said.

“We can’t force them to do an investigation. But we think we will give them the appropriate names and some of the crimes. There may be more that have been committed and then … as more information comes to light, we may have to supplement that down the road, but we think by the end of next week we’ll have this out.”

Regarding the FBI’s investigation into President Donald Trump during his 2016 campaign, Nunes said, “Some of the biggest challenges that we had is because they used our counter-intelligence capabilities — these secret capabilities that are really only supposed to be used to go after terrorists and other bad guys. [But] they actually turned it on a political campaign — and that’s where they first went wrong.”

“The report should just be burned because it’s partisan and it should be looked at a lot like the Christopher Steele, Clinton-dirt dossier.”

Nunes said that “the biggest culprit has been the mainstream media. The mainstream media non-stop was reporting on this phony issue, taking garbage — and they were in on it from the beginning. Let’s not forget, there were many people in the media who were involved in this from the very beginning. They were working directly with the [Hillary] Clinton Fusion GPS, that Clinton campaign arm, the dirty-ops arm of the Clinton campaign.”

And on whether the full Mueller report should be made public, Nunes said, “I actually think I was the first member of Congress to say that all of the information needs to come forward.”

“I don’t really care about the report specifically,” he added.

“I think the report should just be burned because it’s partisan and it should be looked at a lot like the Christopher Steele, Clinton-dirt dossier … It was written by a bunch of partisans. However, there were a lot of interviews that were done, there were a lot of warrants that were issued — there’s a lot of underlying information that could hypothetically fill in [the] blanks to our investigation that I would like to see.”

Related: How Fake Is Fake News? News Media Published Over 500,000 Stories About Russia Collusion

Attorney General Bill Barr on Sunday issued a summary of Robert Mueller’s nearly two-year special counsel investigation. It found no evidence of any collusion between Trump or his associates and the Russian government during the 2016 election season.

Trump tweeted hundreds of times that he did not collude with Russians amid the almost constant allegations from the mainstream media and more over the past two years — so the results indeed amount to vindication of the president.

In the days since the four-page summary’s release, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) has urged House Democrats to move on from the issue, given the Mueller findings.

McCarthy also implored Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) (above left) to apologize for his repeated assertions of guilt and collusion even after Trump was cleared.

All nine GOP members of the House panel signed a letter calling on Schiff to resign as chairman because they now had “no faith” in his leadership given his repeated allegations against Trump, as the Washington Examiner and other outlets have noted.

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