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FBI Director Cites Ongoing Investigation in Response to Spying Question

Contrary to media reporting, Wray did not deny that spying on the Trump campaign occurred theepochtimes.com/fbi-director-c… via @epochtimes
Wray’s answers have been widely misrepresented and misreported. Media outlets such as The Washington Post and CNN published headlines claiming that Wray had said there was no evidence of spying on the Trump campaign.
There were also multiple claims that Wray had directly refuted statements by Attorney General William Barr.

The problem is, that wasn’t what Wray had actually said. And some of his answers came from questions that had nothing to do with the Trump campaign.
With regard to Wray’s comments on ”spying,” he was actually responding to a question regarding the FBI’s normal operations:
Q: “When FBI agents conduct investigations against alleged mobsters, suspected terrorists, other criminals, do you believe that they’re engaging in “spying” when they’re following FBI investigative policies and procedures?”

Wray: “Well, that’s not the term I would use.”
Wray’s comment was immediately seized upon by many in the media and led to claims that the FBI director had testified there was no spying in relation to the FBI’s investigation of the Trump campaign.
Politico even led with the headline, “FBI’s Wray: Spying is ‘not the term I would use’ to describe Trump campaign probe.”
Note that Wray was responding to the everyday activities of the FBI, not specifically to the activities surrounding the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign.
Shaheen then asked Wray if the FBI spied on the Trump campaign. Wray was very careful in his answer. Note that, despite the many misleading headlines claiming otherwise, this is the only place where Shaheen actually asked directly about spying in relation to the Trump campaign:
Shaheen: “And do you believe, Director Wray, that the FBI and its agents spied into the 2016 presidential campaign operation?”

Wray: “Well, again, I want to be careful about how I answer that question here because there is an ongoing inspector general investigation.“
“I have my own thoughts based on the limited information I’ve seen so far but I don’t think it would be right or appropriate for me to share those at this stage, because I really do think it’s important for everybody to respect the independent inspector general’s investigation...
Wray confirmed the ongoing FISA investigation being conducted by Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz but was careful not to comment on it. Nor did Wray confirm or deny spying on the Trump campaign.
Also of note, Wray did not in any way dispute Shaheen’s use of the word “spied.”
Shaheen: “At this time do you have any evidence that any illegal surveillance into the campaigns or individuals associated with the campaigns by the FBI occurred?l

Wray: “I don’t think I personally have any evidence of that sort.”
Wray’s answer is given greater context in video form, in which it can be seen that Wray paused prior to answering and emphasized the words “I personally,” but the damage was done and the sound bite obtained.
NBC News promptly issued an article titled “FBI chief Wray refutes Barr, says no ‘spying’ on Trump campaign.” The Washington Post published no less than 3 different articles on Wray’s statements, including one titled “FBI chief: No evidence of illegal spying on Trump campaign.”
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