Attorney General William Barr said Thursday that a development in the investigation into the origins of the Trump-Russia probe is expected as early as Friday, and that more “significant” developments will happen prior to the election in November.
“Tomorrow there will be a development in the case,” Barr said in an interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity.
“It’s not an earth-shattering development, but it is an indication that things are moving along at the proper pace as dictated by the facts in this investigation.”
John Durham, the U.S. attorney for Connecticut, has been investigating various aspects of the FBI and CIA’s activities related to Trump associates in 2016 and 2017. He is reportedly looking into the FBI’s rationale for opening a counterintelligence investigation on the Trump campaign in July 2016, as well as the FBI’s handling of the Steele dossier.
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Democrats have increasingly cast doubt on the Durham inquiry, alleging that the attorney general is trying to influence the election in President Trump’s favor. Barr has dismissed those concerns and said that the investigation is not targeting Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden or former President Barack Obama.
“We are not going to do anything inappropriate before the election but we are not being dictated to by the schedule, what’s dictating the timing of this is our development of the case,” Barr said Thursday.
“I’ve said there are going to be developments, significant developments for the election but we are not doing this on the election schedule,” he added.
The Justice Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment about what will happen on Friday.
One possible target of Durham’s probe is reported to be Kevin Clinesmith, a former FBI lawyer who worked on Crossfire Hurricane, the Trump counterintelligence probe.
A Justice Department inspector general’s report said that an FBI attorney, said to be Clinesmith, altered an email in June 2017 to downplay former Trump campaign aide Carter Page’s relationship with the CIA.
The FBI obtained warrants in October 2016 to surveil Page. Investigators relied heavily on unverified information from Christopher Steele, a former British spy.
Barr said in an interview in June that Durham is also looking into whether Russian intelligence officers fed disinformation to Steele.