This article originally appeared in Fox News.
This is a rush transcript from “The Ingraham Angle,” May 25, 2018. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
JESSE WATERS, HOST: Good evening from New York. I’m Jesse Waters in for Laura and this is an Ingraham Angle special, The Russian cloud. The Russian probe has indeed been hanging like a cloud over the Trump administration. But the script is flipping as the investigators come under investigation. Tonight we are going to examine these issues. Whether Spygate is the Watergate of our era or even worse.
Our Intel experts explain why timing is now the key to proving whether the Obama administration spied on the Trump campaign. Former FBI agents examine James Comey’s claim that President Trump simply made up Spygate despite all the growing evidence. Signs Americans are fed up with Russia, Russia, Russia as Democrats start to fear a major backlash in November and whether Trump can persuade Mueller to wind up his investigation by consenting to an interview. Now, let’s begin our Ingraham Angle special report on the Russian cloud with a look at Spygate.
That’s what President Trump calls the growing reports that the FBI, under Obama, placed at least one informant or spy in his Presidential campaign. Those reports also fuel suspicion on the right that the Russian investigation has been nothing more than a political coup by Obama allies in the deep state against the duly elected President of the United States, in the era of an exploding surveillance state. Have we actually witnessed an administration infiltrate the presidential campaign of an opposing party. An editorial in Wednesday’s Investor’s Business Daily points how timing is everything.
The IBD noted that the timeline of the FBI’s Russia investigation keeps shifting. And the earlier the probe began quote, “the less likely it is that it had anything to do with Russian involvement in the 2016 elections but everything to do with stopping the surprising surge of Trump during the GOP primaries and beyond”. Let’s examine that prospect with some top notch experts from our FBI special agent Jeff Beatty is in Orlando.
In Washington Bill Binney who served more than 30 years as an Intel official with the NSA before turning whistle blower. And here in New York Steven Rogers, a former member of FBI joint terrorism task force. Steve we’ll start with you. I have a theory here and one’s bad and one’s a little worse. First, the Obama administration thought there was Russian infiltration so they used the Trump officials as bait in order to lure the Russians in, but nothing materialized.
So then they looked around and they thought, you know I have some Trump people on the hook here, let’s turn the screws. Or it was deceitful from the very beginning, they wanted eye and ears on the Trump campaign so without any probable cause they cooked up this echo chamber of spies and lies of misinformation to get the surveillance. What do you think?
STEVE ROGERS, FORMER FBI AGENT: Jesse if they were going for the Russians, they would have gone to the Trump campaign. They would have there in their hands the greatest asset of human intelligence right in the Trump campaign. They would have wired those individuals up and said look the Russians are coming after you. We need you, we need to wire you up let’s trap the Russians. It was deceitful from the beginning. They were never going after the Russians Jesse, they were going after Donald Trump.
WATERS: Yeah you know Bill, where are the Russians here in this investigation because we see a lot of spies and FBI people. We haven’t seen a lot of Russian spies. Have they ever materialized?
BILL BINNEY, INTELLIGENCE OFFICIAL: Not that I can see. I meant the evidence they put forth to say it was a Russian hack from Gusev (ph) too turns out to be very clear fabrication, in fact a very poor one and its provable through forensics that is not a valid download remotely. So I mean all of it was fabricated.
WATERS: So Jeff like Bill just mentioned, it all started with a so-called hack of the Democrats computers. Now the counter Intel investigation opened up a couple of weeks after the email released in the summer with Debbie Wasserman Schultz, remember they rigged the primary all that stuff. Why didn’t the FBI go and look at the server at the DMC and do a forensic audit. I mean wouldn’t that be the first place you’d look if you were looking for Russian Intel infiltration?
JEFF BEATTY, FBI SPECIAL AGENT: Well you know that goes back to 2015 and I’m a believer in your course of action too that you outlined at the top of the show Jesse. But let me just give you what I see as the bluff, the bottom line upfront. The FBI gave a defensive briefing to the Democratic National Committee when they had information that there was a foreign entity trying to sway influence or move into or penetrate the Democratic apparatus. They did not do that for the Republican apparatus as Steve eluded to. What they did from the very beginning was treat the Republican apparatus differently.
Democrat, defensive briefing, let’s work together. Republican, I really think it was just a fig leaf to use other government agencies to introduce a Russian raison d’etre to explain why they could then go ahead, launch an investigation for two purposes Jesse. I think first of all to get political Intelligence as what was going on on the inside of the campaign so they could use it. But secondly, to be able to destroy their enemy. These guys, not use a Chris Matthews reference, these guys were playing hardball.
WATERS: Please no Chris Matthews references on the show. Those are now banned for the rest of the hour.
BEATTY: Okay no more. But I mean –. Destroy your enemy or they will destroy you.
WATERS: Right. So they have suspicions about either Page or Manafort or Papadopoulos in the spring. And instead of maybe interviewing Papadopoulos or Page or whoever, Manafort, they don’t do any of that. They don’t even alert Donald Trump that, hey we are supposed to protect you maybe there could be some issues. Instead they wiretap everybody and send spy rings throughout the whole campaign. It doesn’t seem like an anti-Russia operation, it seems like an anti-Trump operation.
BEATTY: They didn’t even go into the DNC to see if there was a Russian I there to see there was an opening to the back door servers.
ROGERS: I believe the stage was set the day James Comey testified before Congress and gave Hillary Clinton a pass, never really pursued the 33 000 missing emails, number one. What happened to Bill Clinton and the famous tarmac meeting at the airport with Loretta Lynch, they gave her a pass. And now as I said earlier, why didn’t they go to the Trump campaign and say we think the Russians are coming. What we need you to do is wire your people up to trap the Russians. They tried to trap President Donald Trump and they failed.
BINNEY: That’s because they had them all wired. They were all copied. I mean everything, once you have one person in the campaign, you have the whole campaign. That’s a two-hop principle.
WATERS: That’s right. And half these guys were coming in and out of Trump Towers. The other coup guys were overseas. They through everything at the campaign. They through spies, informants, secret subpoenas, electronic surveillance, fake dossiers, unmasking. Every technicality that you could use in an investigation, the through everything at these guys and you know what, Donald Trump still won the election. I mean what does that say?
ROGERS: No evidence, no evidence of collusion.
BINNEY: And keep in mind though Jesse that are using the NSA databases to do all this spying and those go back to 2001 so they could retroactively analyze all the data on everyone in the campaign.
WATERS: Right. Now Clapper as we all remember one of the Intelligence Chiefs under President Barack Obama has been doing the rounds on television and he disputes the whole thing, kind off. Here’s his spin.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JIM CLAPPER, FORMER DIRECTOR OF NAITIONAL INTELLIGENCE: I think he is deliberately spinning a narrative whereby he is a victim of the deep state spying on him and spying on the campaign which is not the case. It’s what I would call my informed opinion that given the massive effort the Russians made and the number of citizens that they touched, to me is just exceeds logic and credulity that they didn’t affect the election and it’s my belief that they actually turned it.
JOY BAHER, ABC HOST: So I ask you, was the FBI spying on Trump’s campaign?
CLAPPER: No they were not. They were spying on, a term that I don’t particularly like, but on what the Russians were doing.
BAHER: Why doesn’t he like that? He should be happy that they were doing –
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WATERS: Okay, first of all, James Clapper is on the View. I don’t think the top Intel guy from any team should be on the View. Second of all he just admitted that he spied. But wait, they were just trying help President Trump. President Trump should thank them for spying on the campaign, right?
ROGERS: Jesse, one thing you said opening up and the question is, did the Obama administration know about this? Did the justice department under Obama know about this? I don’t believe for one moment that they didn’t know. I believe Obama knew about what was going on. I believe his justice department knew what was going on and it’s all falling apart.
WATERS: That’s a great point. Bill, we have evidence that the White House was in the loop on this. We have some Page drop texts. At one point they said quote, “The White house is running this”. Talking about this counter Intelligence operation. There are these briefings with the top people in the Obama team, White House chief of staff was in the loop on this. How could Obama not know that this was happening?
BINNEY: I mean after all just take the Steel dossier for example, that was some fellow from MI6, which is the equivalent of CIA. And then CIA was involved, FBI was involved and the department of Justice. The only place those organisations come to a point where it can come together and be ordered and coordinated is with the president.
WATERS: Yeah and we do have records now that this spy or whatever you want to call him over there in England. He was getting paid pretty handsomely by the Obama administration right around the same time he was running these dirty tricks. This guy was connected to MI6, CIA. He’d done some dirty tricks in the elections in the past. He was outspoken about his support for Hillary Clinton and even tried to get a job within the Trump administration afterwards so Jeff, I mean it’s all coming apart.
BEATTY: It is and to see Clapper and Brennin out there with titles of former director et cetera, you know these guys are no longer intelligence officials and it’s time for the President to start striking back at them. And by that I mean a lot of these senior people get to keep their security clearances so that the can consult within people with government. There’s no need to have security clearances anymore. Start taking away Brennin’s security clearance or access to anything, Clapper’s security clearance or access to anything because they have become partisans. They are not out there doing what they are supposed to have done as professionals which is to do your job and be blind, be agnostic when it comes to party politics. They are just not, they are partisans.
WATERS: That’s a bold move to make and I think President Trump would probably make that move or at least flirt with doing that. You brought up an interesting point about people, though, still in the FBI, or still in the DOJ that do have these clearances. We’re hearing word here at Fox News that there may be some people coming forward, maybe some whistle blowers that might like to talk about how James Comey ran these operations. How he dealt with the Clintons, how he dealt with the Trump campaign. Let’s just go around, if you guys were still in the government, would you guys come forward and testify and lawyer up?
BEATTY: The good news is that the DOJ report’s about to come out and the OIG has the ability to protect the whistle blowers within the department of justice and within the FBI. So I’m hopeful, optimistic that some of those folks will do the right thing and get protected by the OIG and we might see some of their content coming out in his reports. It would be very interesting.
ROGERS: Jesse they need to break down the blue wall of silence. When the ship is sinking no one is going to throw you a life raft.
WATERS: And Bill what do you think?
BINNEY: Well according to constitution you have recourse to Congress and that’s exactly what I did in 2002 and won.
WATERS: You won?
BINNEY: I mean I went to Congress to report some of the spying on the US citizens. It’s all a lie when they tell you they are after the Russians. All their tapping points in the Fairview program are internal in the US. There’s 11 points they could pick up every foreigner coming into or out of or through the United States. If they stayed at those 11 points they’d get them all.
WATERS: And what if they actually, the Russians that they didn’t, all they were doing was a calling Hillary Clinton names on Facebook. Not that bad. Guys I’ve got to run thank you. Up next two incredibly accomplished former FBI agents give us the inside story of what happening inside the bureau right now. A lot of current agents are reportedly so fed up, they want to testify before Congress.
If Spygate is real. If the Obama administration actually spied on a political opponent without justification, it could be the biggest scandal in US history. So it’s little wonder form FBI Chief James Comey, appointed by Obama and fired by Trump was in full denial mode last night.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CONAN O’BRIAN, FOX HOST: Do you find that at all to be possible or probable or just playing devil’s advocate that there a spy inserted into his campaign by an intelligence agency?
JAMES COMEY, FORMER DIRECTOR OF THE FBI: I don’t find it possible and I know it not to be true. Which is why I am confident that something else will be bigger than Watergate next week.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WATERS: well then. Why are current FBI agents reportedly so disgusted with Comey that they are practically begging Congress to make them testify. Rank and File FBI agents told The Daile Caller they want to testify to Congress that politics and incompetence at the top are destroying the bureau. Here’s how Senator Ron Johnson, Charmain of the Homeland Security Agency responded Wednesday on the Angle.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHNSON: What has surprised me is we haven’t had FBI agents come forward to me. They will go to the press.
INGRAHAM: And they want to testify on what?
JOHNSON: We heard that when Comey exonerated Clinton that they were going to blow a gasket basically. Why haven’t they come forward? Come forward to my committee, we’ll protect you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WATERS: Sounds like Comey’s problems may just be beginning. Let’s discuss Spygate with two distinguished retired members of the bureau. In Phoenix, former FBI national spokesperson John Iannarelli and in Palm Beach Gardens Florida, former FBI agent and counter terrorism expert Chad Jenkins who was awarded three bronze star medals during his service as an army ranger. So I don’t think these are getting their stories straight John. You heard at the top of the show Clapper says there was spy in there and then Comey on the late night show says there wasn’t a spy. I mean, it’s kind of important to make sure everybody is on the same page, don’t you think?
JOHN IANNARELLI, FORMER FBI NATIONAL SPOKERSPERSON: I think so. I find it odd that Director Comey is going on Conan O’Brian to talk about these important issues. I guess the Food Network wasn’t available last night.
WATERS: You know and Clapper is going on the View, so.
IANNARELLI: Exactly. Two hard hitting programs that are going to get to the bottom of this. I will tell you that agents across the board are non- political. They remain bias when doing their work. But at the top they clearly appears to have been a problem there because if they were interested in Russians, the first thing you’re going to talk to is the person that would be the victim of the Russians. That didn’t happen.
WATERS: Right. No, instead the spied on that person and surveilled them. Chad, it’s not good for James Comey. He has basically contaminated the so called crime scene when you think about sending all these biased agents in there. When you bring in the fake dossier and the illegal spying, it doesn’t look. If this was in a court of law, this thing would get tossed. Do you think that’s the genesis of this anger by the boots at the FBI or not?
CHAD JENKINS, FORMER FBI AGENT: I think it is Jesse. We’re at the point where the judge in this is the American people and the American people are being lied to on all side at this point. No one really knows where the truth lies so at this point what I recommend is this whole entire investigation at the special counsel, it needs to be declassified. We are at the point where a house divided will fall on itself and the American society as a whole will fall on itself if we don’t get to the bottom of what the truth is. Not the half-truth, but the full truth. And the only way to do this is to have these agents come out whether it’s through subpoenas and testifying to these committees. Something has to happen in order to get everything out there that we can all decide and see for ourselves what really is taking place in this mess.
WATERS: Yeah and there’s a real insurrection growing at the rank and file there. James Comey obviously not an admired leader. We heard things about his leadership during the campaign. A lot of people very upset with the way he treated the Hillary Clinton criminal probe. Just look at the difference, John. Hillary’s people were given immunity and Trump they go on scorched earth. Hillary destroyed evidence under subpoena and the Trump people have given over millions and millions of documents. It’s just very unfair to the average person the way that thing has been handled politically by the bureau.
IANNARELLI: For more than a hundred years the FBI enjoyed this great reputation of being there to defend the American people and I am afraid in the last couple of years that reputation is diminishing. Not because of the rank and file, like you said but because of the actions of people like this. In the passed the FBI has been very clear, we treat both sides at political isle the same but yes there are certainly problems here that not congruent with the way one side is being treated versus the other. I agree with my colleague. We need to come clear here and let the American people know what’s going on so they can have confidence in the FBI.
WATERS: Yeah I mean there is lying taking place all over. Tucker last night has Joe DiGenova on and he had this to say about just the atmosphere over there.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE DIGENOVA, FORMER US ATTORNEY: They are lying in the unbelievably most brazen and insidious way. If they were not spying on the Trump campaign, why didn’t they just tell the Trump people, “the Russians are coming after you, be careful”. Because that’s not what they were doing. They were spying on the Trump campaign trying to frame people, set them up Comey and Clapper and Brennan are a group of psychotics who now, they can’t stop lying.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WATERS: You know he made appoint about the setting up because if you look at the way Page and Papadopoulos became under surveillance. They were invited to England, tined and dined and they their hotels and airlines paid for. They were getting set up for drinks with Clinton donors. You know the way the Flynn deal, he was ambushed without an attorney by Peter Strzok. Even the Trump tower meeting looks suspicious in hind sight. You have the Russian lawyer granted an exceptional visa via Loretta Lynch to come into the country. She meets with the President Fusion boss in GPS before and after the Trump Tower meeting. Looking back a lot of it looks set up. Do you believe it was set up?
IANNARELLI: As an attorney, I would take this case in heart beat and claim entrapment at the very least. It doesn’t look good, the optics. Even if they had the best of intentions which I don’t think existed, it looks bad. That’s why these political cases, the FBI is so careful because they want to be concerned with how the public will perceive their actions. That wasn’t done in this case and it’s hurt everyone.
WATERS: Well this is why Chad because they won’t give any information to the Congressional oversight people, who have constitutional right to use their oversight powers to look into what the FBI is doing. Why are they stonewalling if everything was on the up and up?
JENKINS: Well you are right Jesse. We are to the point where we can no longer say oh the FBI and DOJ are apolitical. They wear the blindfold that Lady Liberty wears, that has gone, that ship has sailed. That goes back to my point where we need to divulge everything, the truth needs to be told. Because you look at it going back at it I mean, to James Comey so I tried to give him the benefit of the doubt. I actually read his book and that’s actually what changed my opinion of him that too often, one, he is always on the right side of history throughout.
The only real vulnerability that he shares is maybe that he was a bully to a college kid one time but outside of that his professional career he makes every decision rightful, every single time. And then when you look at what happened with Loretta Lynch and Bill Clinton on the tarmac right there shows that there’s political involvement in that and as the FBI director he needed to address that. Step up to the plate, be the leader that you were made to be and address that if you’re really truly trying to be apolitical and not let politics involve your decisions.
WATERS: Yeah he’s above it all and so sanctimonious. Let’s listen at what he said about the President to Stephanopoulos here.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, FORMER WHITE HOUSE COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR: Is Donald Trump unfit to be president?
JAMES COMEY, FORMER FBI DIRECTOR: I don’t think he is medically unfit to be president, I think he is morally unfit to be president.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WATERS: You know for a leaker for an operator, a political animal that really has a tough track record at the FBI with all these abuses piling up I don’t think he’s fit to be casting moral judgement on the commander in chief. Guys got to run, great talking to you.
JENKINS: Thank you.
IANNARELLI: Thanks Jesse.
WATERS: Laura’s interview with a former Trump campaign advisor on what it was like to be targeted by an FBI informant. That’s next. The Russia investigation turned into Spygate after the New York Times reported last week that the FBI has placed at least one informant inside the Trump Presidential campaign. The Times said an informant met several times with Carter Page who only served briefly as an advisor to the Trump campaign. Former Trump campaign advisor Michael Caputo said he was approached by a suspicious individual during the election. Laura spoke with both Page and Caputo on Monday about those experiences. Here’s a look back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LAURA INGRAHAM, FOX NEW HOST: Carter let’s start with you at. You had a lot of contact with this informant, whatever we want to call him, informant, spy, mole. And I want to read one of the emails that he sent to you that was released by I think it was by Daily Caller got this initially. “Dear Carter I thought it right as the summer wears on how you are and what are plans at this point.
It seems as if attention has shifted a bit from the collusion investigation to the contrempts, of course he misspelled it, within the White House and how or if Mr Scaramucci will be accommodated there. I must assume this gives you some relief. We are here in Virginia et cetera, et cetera. Be in touch when you have the time. It would be great catch up”. We are not mentioning the informant’s name. But Carter, when did you first meet this informant, that we now know is an informant and just briefly tell us about that exchange
CARTER PAGE, FORMER FOREIGN POLICY ADVISOR TO DONALD TRUMP: Well again, similar to you in term of being cautious I also never knew anything about the person I was speaking with who is a University professor at Cambridge in the UK at the time back. I was invited to participate in a conference in July of 2016 and everything seemed totally normal. And frankly I had been falsely accuse myself and we will see what happens in terms of, a further details come out but they’ve sent everything I have seen thus far. We still don’t have any information so there’s been a lot of–
INGRAHAM: Yeah we know he was paid a million dollars over five years, pretty good money as a consultant or a researcher. But you know, you are right we shall see. But question, Carter, before we go on to Michael. Who started the conversation? How did the date begin? Did he approach you, did he mention Russian collusion first?
PAGE: It was a multi-day conference, and there were scholars and people from government, both from the United Kingdom —
INGRAHAM: I know, I know, but stay focused with me, Carter. Did he approach you first, or did you approach him? How did you first start speaking?
PAGE: I don’t even recall. We spent a couple days together.
INGRAHAM: A couple days together?
PAGE: It was a long event over several days.
INGRAHAM: What I’m saying is, there were lots of scholars there. You have to know the process of grooming someone. When someone is an informant, they don’t just go up to someone and say, hey, I want to plant information on you or find out what you have. You try to win someone’s trust over, that’s how it goes.
PAGE: I never felt groomed. So if he’s good at doing that, then perhaps that’s part of the game.
INGRAHAM: But you don’t know who mentioned the Russia collusion issue first.
PAGE: I can’t even remember. You know, I think Russia was in the news, and I think a lot of politics sort of revolves around various news events, and so these various stories came up. Again, we stayed in touch for over a year, and —
INGRAHAM: Look back on it, Carter — I’m sorry to interrupt, but we have limited time. Looking back on it, does anything seem odd? You know how you know something, like maybe that was a little odd, or any other contacts you had with any other people that seem now in retrospect given what we know now, odd, out of the ordinary, or maybe in some way improper?
PAGE: I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt. And we’ll see. Maybe this individual who we’re talking about might have been a little bit nicer than I might otherwise have expected, although, we were talking about all of the abuses that were happening with this dodgy dossier which was first debuted in September, 2016, as a way of damaging the Trump campaign and basically destroying myself. And so he always seemed very sympathetic about that.
So again, we’ll see. I like to give people the benefit of the doubt. People that know him in Washington in senior circles that I have spoken with afterwards say you seem like a pretty decent guy. So I give —
INGRAHAM: That would be the perfect person to use for it. Maybe I’m just cynical, been around Washington too long. Carter, if only they gave you the benefit of the doubt like you’re giving other people the benefit of the doubt.
Michael, let’s go to you. You’ve been through the meat grinder at the Mueller investigation. He has the legal eagles, all these really highly skilled interviewers, prosecutors on his side. Many of them, not all of them, but many of them I believe have a built-in animus against Donald Trump. You are very angry that you have been drawn into this as a former associate of Roger Stone. You also did some work for the Trump campaign. Tell us what you think. You just heard what Carter said about this reported informant for the FBI.
MICHAEL CAPUTO, FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN ADVISER: I think Carter has been through more of a meatgrinder than I have, and he’s handled it as a gentleman. In fact when I first heard about this stuff, I think in 2016 or 2017 about Carter, I wasn’t very kind in my criticism. And I think it looks like they were really abusing Carter. I think they were really treating him poorly, and I think a lot of us owe Carter an apology because we didn’t wait to hear the truth at the end, and now we’re finding out that his country was really failing him for months and months and even years.
I’m angry. I’m surprised that Carter is not. He is a greater man than I, I think. But I’ll tell you, this is really sick and twisted stuff. And like Carter said, this gentleman who shall not be named has a reputation of being very pro-America, very patriotic. And if, in fact, he was brought into this under false circumstances or false pretenses as well, he’s the kind of guy that a deep state would target.
INGRAHAM: Well, the dossier was the basis for getting this FISA warrant. I don’t care what these people say, it was all a big lie. Without this dossier, Carter Page would not have been surveilled in the fall of 2016. That would not have happened. That’s why they were running to that Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska to try to get him involved. And he said, I don’t even like Paul Manafort, this is ridiculous.
They were doing everything they could. They’re working the Page angle, they problem were working this informant angle, and they brought you in, Michael, which we will get to in a moment. But I want to play for you what Sally Yates, the acting attorney general at the very beginning of the Trump administration, she’s the one partly responsible for interviewing Michael Flynn at the beginning, what she said today on “Morning Joe.” Let’s watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SALLY YATES, FORMER ACTING ATTORNEY GENTLEMEN: I think what we are saying here is the president has taken his all out assault on the rule of law to a new level. And this time he is ordering up an investigation of the investigators who are examining his own campaign. That’s really shocking.
Rod Rosenstein is trying to strike a balance here between diffusing the situation, but also protecting the rule of law and the institutional integrity of the department.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Carter Page, as I pointed out in the opening anger, the government under the Obama administration has surveilled people and lied about it. And whether it was Clapper, whether it was the FBI under Holder surveilling journalists, they have a history of having a problem telling the truth on surveillance. So for Sally Yates to run out there and say Donald Trump is attacking the rule of law, come on. Your reaction?
PAGE: Going to Michael’s point about things they did to me, President Trump during the campaign would often say this is not about me, this is about us. And I think of all of the terrible things that happened to so many people like Michael, like some of the other people who are involved allegedly with this informant, I actually spoke very positively. I got a positive impression about this informant and a couple of people I mentioned him to in the campaign. I was a pretty positive endorsement.
So I hope and pray that all these allegations turn out to be false. And part of why I’m somewhat open about my communications with him is that it will lead to some truth finally from the Department of Justice. I have been asking for the DOJ to own up to these things. It’s funny, the defamation suit I have against a top media organization and DOJ, the media organization is actually much more honest than the false pleadings by the DOJ so far. Hopefully they clean up.
INGRAHAM: All right, we have to play this James Clapper for Michael. He is basically just justifying the use of any type of informant.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAMES CLAPPER, FORMER DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE: The focus here as it was with the intelligence community is not on the campaign per se, but what the Russians were doing to try to instantiate themselves in the campaign or to influence and leverage it. So if there was someone that observing that sort of thing, that’s a good thing because the Russians pose a threat to the very basis of our political system.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Michael, you see a pattern here? Former Obama administration officials justifying spying on, surveilling, whatever you want to call it, putting a mole in on an opposing campaign and a hotly contested election here. Final thoughts?
CAPUTO: You have spent time in Russia, Carter and I both have. In Russia they call this the Salovaky (ph), the national security leadership that secretly spies on the entire citizenry of Russia, and here we are in the United States with our own Salovaky (ph) underneath President Obama.
Let me tell you something that I know for a fact. This informant, this person that they tried to plant into the campaign and even into the administration if you believe “Axios,” he is not the only person that came at the campaign, and the FBI is not the only Obama agency that came at the campaign. I know because they came at me. And I’m looking for clearance from my attorney to reveal this to the public, this is just the beginning. And I tell you, when we finally find out the truth about this, Director Clapper and the rest of them are going to be wearing some orange suits.
INGRAHAM: Michael Caputo and Carter Page, I hope we get to the bottom of this a lot sooner than a lot of people are predicting because the American people deserve to know who is behind us, who authorized it, and how high up the ladder it went. Thank you both for joining us tonight.
WATTERS: we should note that a producer got in touch with the person Mr. Caputo was just talking about, and he claims he was not working for any intelligence agency. We will see.
Up next, Americans may be fed up with Russia, Russia, Russia. We will show you what a new poll says and examine whether the Russian obsession will backfire on Democrats in November.
WATTERS: Welcome back to our “Ingraham Angle” special, “The Russian Cloud.” We are seeing signs that the Russia investigation could backfire on the president’s opponents as Americans grow tired of it. A new survey from Harvard CAPS Harris poll shows 30 percent of Americans believe the investigation should stop immediately, 20 percent say the investigation should wind down with the next three months. And on Wednesday, Nancy Pelosi heard from an increasingly skeptical public during our CNN town hall.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If Trump actually colluded with the Russians, why wasn’t he found guilty of it after a year of investigation? Wouldn’t there be some type of concrete proof by now?
REP. NANCY PELOSI, (D) HOUSE MINORITY LEADER: You know that there is an investigation going on under Counsel Mueller, and that is where we wouldn’t have any idea of what was going on in that, nor should we know what is going on in that investigation. But it takes time.
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WATTERS: Are Democrats putting too many eggs in the Mueller basket? Let’s ask former Democratic Congressman Jason Altmire in Jacksonville, Florida, and conservative commentator and Fox News contributor Rachel Campos Duffy in Wausau, Wisconsin. Did I get that right, Wausau?
RACHEL CAMPOS-DUFFY, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: No. Wausau.
WATTERS: Wausau, got you. So, ladies first. I’m sorry, I’m from the east coast. We will start with you, though, because I’m such a gentleman. I think the Democrats should just nominate Mueller to be the Democrat nominee because they believe that’s the only person that can stop President Trump.
They don’t have anything else.
CAMPOS-DUFFY: Every day that the Democrats talk about Russia and Trump and that the Republicans talk about America, it’s a winning day for Republicans. And I heard your poll numbers earlier, the one poll number we should focus on is 75 percent, and that’s the number of Americans who give Donald Trump credit for crushing it on the economy.
So the Democrats are frustrated right now, and there are a few people out there who are trying to raise the red flags. One of them is Mark Penn, a former Clinton camp person saying hey, guys, get off the special counsel, get off of Russia. Come up with a message because you don’t have one. And that’s a problem coming into the midterm.
WATTERS: Jason, do you think the whole focus on Mueller and Russia, isn’t that doing a disservice to the Democratic Party going into the midterms because they haven’t crafted any coherent message around policy that can jive with the voters.
JASON ALTMIRE, FORMER PENNSYLVANIA CONGRESSMAN: I don’t know if that is the case. If you follow social media and the resistance movement, certainly they talk about Russia all the time. There are other networks that talk about Russia all the time. But I think the candidates that are out on the trail all across the country looking forward to November, they are talking about other issues. They are talking about jobs and the economy and climate change and other things that are topical to their district.
WATTERS: I wouldn’t really talk too much about climate change. I don’t think that’s the best policy prescription for the midterms. But I understand people when they are politicking and pressing the flesh out there at the barbecues, they can talk one on one about stuff that is good for the local district. But the megaphone with the media, the machine, the Democratic Party apparatus, they are not talking about kitchen table issues, Rachel. They are talking about impeachment, they’re talking about Russia. I don’t even know what their slogan is next midterm.
CAMPOS-DUFFY: Absolutely. The message from the Democrat Party is not just Russia, but also, vote for us, we will impeach Donald Trump. And the American people I don’t think are buying that. That’s why we are seeing this blue wave turned into a trickle because of that.
WATTERS: Pelosi is not even buying that. If it’s too crazy for Pelosi, maybe they should reconsider.
CAMPOS-DUFFY: Very true. I think they counted on two things. They thought they could have 24/7 bad press on Trump, which we know it’s a 90 percent bad press on him. They thought that they could start with this whole Russia hoax. And they thought they could continue their resistance. I know our guest here, Jason Altmire, says the resistance. Well, the resistance isn’t the Democrat Party and the American people see that.
And I think what they didn’t count on was after a year and a half of spying on Trump, trying to frame people from his campaign, they have come up with nothing in a year and a half, zero evidence. And then there’s something else that they didn’t expect, and that’s what I said earlier. They didn’t expect him to crush it on the economy, to decimate ISIS, to really keep all of the promises that he did on the campaign trail.
And I can tell you that here in Wausau, Wisconsin, when I talk to people, that’s the one thing — it’s interesting, it’s the one thing I hear the most. Whether they agree with him or not, they go this is a guy that keeps his promises. And voters I think didn’t expect that because they got cynical and thought it would happen.
WATTERS: Jason, what do you think about that?
ALTMIRE: I wouldn’t say they have come up with nothing. There have been 17 indictments and five guilty pleas.
WATTERS: Nothing to do with collusion.
ALTMIRE: Two of those guilty pleas, General Flynn and Papadopoulos, have to do with Russia, and certainly the Mueller investigation is not complete. We don’t know what the investigation is going to do. Yes both had to do with Russia.
WATTERS: Have to do with Russia is not collusion. The perjury with Papadopoulos, he got the date wrong. And the FBI agents that interviewed Flynn came back and said I don’t actually think he was lying. But you know what, we’re going to let the Mueller investigation —
ALTMIRE: He pled guilty, so I think that’s pretty clear.
WATTERS: We will see about that.
ALTMIRE: I’m not prejudging what the report is going to say, I’m simply saying that it is an ongoing investigation. There have been laws broken, there have been guilty pleas and indictments. So I don’t buy this witch hunt idea. This is a legitimate issue and let’s get to the bottom of it.
WATTERS: You are turning all around, because these abuses keep stacking up on the democrat side when they were in office, and it might not look too good once we get everything straightened out. I have to run, guys, thank you.
CAMPOS-DUFFY: I couldn’t agree with you more, Jesse. The indictments are going to vindicate the president and we are sitting on the mother of all scandals.
WATTERS: As President Trump says, we will see what happens.
Up next, we’ll reveal the leverage the president’s legal team is now using to get the special counsel to end its investigation of the president, up next.
WATTERS: The Trump legal team has gone on to the offensive since adding Rudy Giuliani. He’s trying to get Bob Mueller to end the part of the Russia investigation looking into the president. Giuliani told “The Huffington Post” Thursday that Trump, quote, could probably decide by June 12th whether to testify in front of Mueller’s team. But he also told “The Washington Post” that the president was still more likely to meet with North Korean President Kim Jong-un than Mueller.
Speaking of which, President Trump tweeted tonight, the summit may still happen. But back to the Mueller probe. Let’s look into legal strategies with attorney and Democrat Raj Goyle and Republican attorney Kenneth Del Vecchio of New Jersey. It’s my opinion, Kenneth, the president shouldn’t go near Bob Mueller for a few reasons. One, I don’t trust Mueller. Two, the president has a big mouth and he likes to talk, and he likes to talk a lot. And that’s just not a good strategy when you are facing a possible indictment by someone who doesn’t seem to like you too much.
KENNETH DEL VECCHIO, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Absolutely under no circumstances should he go and speak with special counsel. And there is nothing good that can come out of it. You don’t go and talk with U.S. attorneys, with the Justice Department, unless you are dead in the water. And since Trump is innocent, he’s only going to go there to get his words potentially twisted, to get some bogus obstruction or perjury charges filed against him.
And you have to look at it first from the criminal law perspective. And as a criminal lawyer, I would advise him 100 percent not to go. Now, the political angle is secondary, and it’s a deep second. But what are the political ramifications of this? so Mueller is going to do what? He’s going to subpoena him in front of a grand jury? So he will take the Fifth. The same people that love Donald Trump are going to love him.
WATTERS: It just doesn’t look good when you take the fifth. Whoever you are, I understand it’s your right, but it doesn’t look good politically. Do you agree with that assessment?
RAJ GOYLE, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: No, I disagree because I think President Trump owes it to the American people to let us know what happened in this investigation. I know that the two of you think the whole thing is a hoax and the whole thing is made up.
WATTERS: I didn’t say it was a hoax.
GOYLE: You got pretty close to saying that.
WATTERS: I said it was fishy based on the facts.
GOYLE: I think the facts show, as your previous guest said, we have got 17 indictments — and by the way, what you are going to say is, it’s not about collusion. Well, guess what it’s about? Obstruction of justice. And there are two elements to this Mueller probe, and you want to focus on the collusion with Russia. And so when you have people —
WATTERS: Tell us about obstruction, then. He can fire whoever he wants, right, for whatever reason he wants.
GOYLE: That is a separate issue.
WATTERS: So how could he be charged with —
GOYLE: Five people around the president, people very close to him, have pled guilty. You are a criminal lawyer, you were a judge, you were a prosecutor. People don’t do that casually.
Hold on. Wait, wait, wait. We should just let the facts and let the process run. The reason why I think the president should sit down with an interview with Bob Mueller and —
WATTERS: He pled guilty, that had nothing to do with it.
DEL VECCHIO: Raj, Raj. There is no obstruction because, number one, he has the right to fire anybody he wants at any time he wants. Let me finish, let me finish. If a U.S. attorney knows that an underling is investigating somebody who he knows is innocent, let’s just say the guy’s name is Bob, and he is investigating Bob for murder. But the U.S. attorney himself knows that he is innocent because he was with him at the time of the murder, not only would he have the right to end that investigation, he actually has the duty. So if Donald Trump knows he is innocent or the people around him are innocent, he actually has a duty almost to end the Mueller investigation.
WATTERS: So he goes to talk to Mueller.
GOYLE: If the president has nothing to hide, why doesn’t he sit down with Bob Mueller?
DEL VECCHIO: Because he has the constitutional right to remain silent. It would be completely foolish. Justice is not made from appearances. Justice is made from evidence and facts.
GOYLE: This is where you misunderstand the process.
DEL VECCHIO: No, I don’t misunderstand it. Politically should not be guiding this. The man’s constitutional rights to protect himself should be guiding it and he should be treated the same as everybody else.
WATTERS: Bill Clinton, h went and talked to a grand jury and you know what happened? Perjury.
GOYLE: And this network was very supportive of that notion, so what changed?
WATTERS: You just said, don’t go talk to the grand jury —
GOYLE: I didn’t say that.
WATTERS: — if you have nothing to hide. And what did Bill Clinton do? He went to talk to the grand jury and he was convicted of perjury. So what would you do if you are Donald Trump? It’s a risky proposition.
DEL VECCHIO: I have a great idea for justice. Why don’t we pack the office of special counsel, just like there has been talk about packing the Supreme Court, put nine special councils all together and they all have to vote to even seek an indictment or even seek a warrant. That would be justice.
GOYLE: We’re not back in Moscow. Let me say this very quickly. The American people deserve, no man is above the law. We will agree to that, this is a political process. The ultimate jury will be in the 2018 and 2020 elections where the American people pass judgment on President Trump’s veracity.
WATTERS: I think we can all agree on that. Guys, got to go. We will be right back.
WATTERS: So that’s all the time we have for tonight. Don’t forget to watch “Watters’ World” this Saturday night at 8:00. Someone gets water boarded. Check that out. All right, we also have Tomi Lahren, the Mooch, and Diamond and Silk.
Laura will be back on Monday with a Memorial Day special on defending the first where the “Angle” exposes the enemies of the First Amendment, free expression, and thought. Have a wonderful weekend. Take a moment and reflect on all the sacrifices that the Armed Services made.