Kansas Common Sense

This week, I convened my Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies subcommittee to hear from U.S. Attorney General William Barr on Department of Justice funding priorities for the upcoming Fiscal Year. During the hearing, Attorney General Barr indicated his belief that there may have been unauthorized surveillance during the 2016 presidential campaign.

On Thursday morning, I spoke with Fox News’ Bill Hemmer on America’s Newsroom to discuss the hearing and what’s next.

“I would say that those who are critics of the President, those who are perhaps critics of the Attorney General, are overemphasizing the word ‘spying.’ I think the Attorney General made it clear – I was in the room, I was with the Attorney General for about two hours – my takeaway is what he was talking about was the efforts that commenced this investigation, and if they were based upon legal authority? He made clear what he was talking about, and he has a belief – a concern, was his word – that something may have happened that was inappropriate, and the question is: did that occur? That’s a very valid request of an Attorney General to find out what the facts are, and this kind of overreaction to the word ‘spying’ seems to me to be about partisan politics. Let’s find out what the facts are.

“We’ve had a lot of people who have been demanding answers about the Trump campaign involvement with the Russian interference in our election. We want answers. I think the same thing applies here: the people who are wanting those answers ought to want answers in this issue of the investigation.”

“What my take from that hearing was, is that the Attorney General is doing his job as he should. He’s been open and straightforward with members of our Committee. I agree with him that he shouldn’t be telling us every decision until it’s put in context. He shouldn’t be describing every issue until we see the report, and one of the things that I was able to confirm in my questioning of the Attorney General is he intends to release the Mueller report that has redactions in it; he’s not intending to release a report of his that describes the Mueller report. So I think there’s great value in the American people and in Congress seeing what’s in the report. I understand the legal qualifications of what must be excluded, and I think the Attorney General expressed himself perfectly. We now await the report that he says is coming.”

Click here to watch my full interview.

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