President Trump is planning to personally confront British Prime Minister Theresa May over the UK’s role in spying on his 2016 presidential campaign.
Despite Mrs. May’s resignation Friday, she will still be PM during Trump’s official state visit this June.
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President Trump said Friday that Attorney General William Barr will be taking his investigation of the Russia Probe’s origins global and will examine events in the UK, Australia, and Ukraine.
“It was an attempted coup or an attempted takedown of the president of the United States,” Trump said as he left the White House en route to Japan.
“It should never ever happen to anybody else.”
Dailmail.co.uk reports: Trump praised British Prime Minister Theresa May on a day she announced she was stepping down, but said he may raise the issue with her personally on his upcoming trip to Great Britain, France, and Ireland.
He indicated he may raise allegations of British ‘spying’ on his campaign. His previous claims of U.K.-directed spying have brought furious responses from the U.S. ally. British intelligence has called the claim ‘ridiculous.’
‘I may very well talk to her about that. Yeah, there’s word and rumor that the FBI and others were involved, CIA were involved with the UK having to do with the Russian hoax, and I may very well talk with her about that,’ Trump said Friday.
When Trump raised the issue on Twitter last month, Britain’s Government Communications Headquarters released a statement saying: ‘The allegations that GCHQ was asked to conduct “wire tapping” against the then president-elect are nonsense. They are utterly ridiculous and should be ignored.’
Trump said the internal documents Barr has authority to reveal could number in the millions.
‘I declassified, I guess, potentially millions of pages of documents. I don’t know what it is. I have no idea. But I want to be transparent. Everybody wanted me to declassify. I’ve done it. You could almost says he’s the trustee,’ Trump said, referring to Barr.
‘People have been asking me to declassify for a long period of time,’ Trump said, without saying where the pressure was coming from.
‘I’ve decided to do it, and and you’re going to learn a lot. I hope it’s going to be nice, but perhaps it won’t be,’ he said.
‘We want to be very transparent so as you know I declassified everything, everything they want.’ He repeatedly called Barr a ‘highly respected man.’
Trump on Thursday ordered the intelligence community to cooperate with Attorney General William Barr’s review of the events surrounding the 2016 Presidential campaign.
In a memo released by the White House, Trump demands that the heads of the intelligence community and the heads of each department that includes an element of the intelligence community ‘shall promptly provide such assistance and information as the Attorney General may request in connection with that review.’
The order also allows Barr to declassify any information he sees fit during his review.
‘Before exercising this authority, the Attorney General should, to the extent he deems it practicable, consult with the head of the originating intelligence community element or department,’ the memo states.
‘Today, at the request and recommendation of the attorney general of the United States, President Donald J. Trump directed the intelligence community to quickly and fully cooperate with the attorney general’s investigation into surveillance activities during the 2016 presidential election,’ White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said after Trump issued the directive.
Included in the memo were the Secretary of State, the Secretary of the Treasury, the Secretary of Defense, the Attorney General, the Secretary of Energy, the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Director of National Intelligence and the Director of the CIA.
Last month, Barr said at a Senate hearing that ‘spying’ on Trump’s campaign was carried out by U.S. intelligence agencies, though he later referred to his concerns as focused on ‘unauthorized surveillance.’
Barr has assigned a top federal prosecutor in Connecticut to probe the origins of the Russia investigation in what is the third known inquiry into the opening of the FBI probe.
Trump harbors suspicions that the Democratic Obama administration ordered him investigated during the 2016 campaign to try to undermine his candidacy, and he wants payback against those he believes were responsible.
Of specific interest to Trump are the warrants that emanated from a secretive court that authorizes surveillance on foreign powers and their agents. Trump supporters believe the warrants will identify those responsible for the Russia probe that is still roiling Washington.