On Friday, Fox Business host David Asman caught President Trump’s attention when he spoke about an FBI representative being placed in Trump’s campaign by Obama’s Department of Justice during the 2016 presidential campaign, CBS News reported.
The president responded on Twitter, writing, “Apparently the DOJ put a Spy in the Trump Campaign. This has never been done before and by any means necessary, they are out to frame Donald Trump for crimes he didn’t commit.”
Trump emphasized how deep that spy’s influence could have been, especially in light of the claims of Trump-Russia collusion.
Over the weekend, the president blasted the Trump-Russia investigation at length on Twitter, calling it a very expensive witch hunt. In response on Sunday, he called on the Justice Department to look into what they and the FBI may have done during the campaign under the Obama administration’s direction.
The Justice Department responded on Monday, according to NBC News, saying, "The Department has asked the Inspector General to expand the ongoing review of the FISA [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act] application process to include determining whether there was any impropriety or political motivation in how the FBI conducted its counterintelligence investigation of persons suspected of involvement with the Russian agents who interfered in the 2016 presidential election."
Earlier this year, conservative radio talk show host Mark Levin and Breitbart News alleged that the Obama administration used the investigation of foreign influence in Trump’s campaign as an excuse to wiretap Trump Tower in New York City and gain information on the campaign — possibly to feed intel to Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton.
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein added on Monday, "If anyone did infiltrate or surveil participants in a presidential campaign for inappropriate purposes, we need to know about it and take appropriate action."
The Department of Justice is under the Executive Branch of government, headed by the president, according to WhiteHouse.gov. Unlike the Supreme Court and other federal courts, it does not fall under the Judicial Branch of government.
Still, Democrats balked at the president ordering the Justice Department to investigate the spy claim. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) called it Trump’s “conspiratorial fantasy” and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) claimed the department is supposed to be completely independent of the president.
CNN analyst Stephen Collinson said that Trump is sparking “renewed worries he is barging across long-held boundaries between the judicial system and the Oval Office.” Levin and Breitbart, however, are alleging that Obama already did that.