RUSSIA HOAX: Special Prosecutor Concludes Investigation, Says Trump Collusion Probe Never Should Have Happened

FILE - Special counsel John Durham, the prosecutor appointed to investigate potential government wrongdoing in the early days of the Trump-Russia probe, leaves federal court in Washington, May 16, 2022. Durham ended his four-year investigation into possible FBI misconduct in its probe of ties between Russia and Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign. The report Monday, May 15, 2023, from Durham offers withering criticism of the bureau but a meager court record that fell far short of the former president’s prediction he would uncover the “crime of the century.” (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File)

A special prosecutor has ended his four-year investigation into possible FBI misconduct in its probe of ties between Russia and Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign with withering criticism of the bureau.

The report Monday from special counsel John Durham represents the long-awaited culmination of an investigation that Trump and allies had claimed would expose massive wrongdoing by law enforcement and intelligence officials. Instead, Durham’s investigation delivered some results, with prosecutors securing a guilty plea from a little-known FBI employee but losing the only two criminal cases they took to trial.

The roughly 300-page report catalogs what Durham says were a series of wrong moves by the FBI and Justice Department as investigators undertook a politically explosive probe in the heat of the 2016 election into whether the Trump campaign was colluding with Russia to tip the outcome. It criticized the FBI for opening a full-fledged investigation based on “raw, unanalyzed and uncorroborated intelligence,” saying the speed at which it did so was a departure from the norm. And it said investigators repeatedly relied on “confirmation bias,” ignoring or rationalizing away evidence that undercut their premise of a Trump-Russia conspiracy as they pushed the probe forward.

“Again, the FBI’s failure to critically analyze information that ran counter to the narrative of a Trump/Russia collusive relationship exhibited throughout Crossfire Hurricane is extremely troublesome,” the report said. “Crossfire Hurricane” was the FBI code name for its investigation.

The impact of Durham’s report, though harshly critical of the FBI, is likely blunted by Durham’s spotty prosecution record and by the fact that many of the seven-year-old episodes it cites were already examined in depth by the Justice Department’s inspector general. The FBI has also long since announced dozens of corrective actions. Still, Durham’s findings are likely to amplify scrutiny of the FBI at a time when Trump is again seeking the White House as well as offer fresh fodder for congressional Republicans who have launched their own investigation into the purported “weaponization” of the FBI and Justice Department.

The FBI released a letter to Durham outlining changes it has made, including steps to ensure the accuracy of secretive surveillance applications to eavesdrop on suspected terrorists and spies. It also stressed that the report focused on prior leadership.

“Had those reforms been in place in 2016, the missteps identified in the report could have been prevented. This report reinforces the importance of ensuring the FBI continues to do its work with the rigor, objectivity, and professionalism the American people deserve and rightly expect,” the FBI said in a statement.

Durham, the former U.S. Attorney in Connecticut, was appointed in 2019 by Trump’s attorney general, William Barr, soon after special counsel Robert Mueller had completed his investigation into whether the 2016 Trump campaign had colluded with Russia to move the outcome of the election in his favor.

The Mueller investigation resulted in roughly three dozen criminal charges, including convictions of a half-dozen Trump associates, and concluded that Russia intervened on the Trump campaign’s behalf and that the campaign welcomed the help. But Mueller’s team did not find that they actually conspired to sway the election, creating an opening for critics of the probe — including Barr himself — to complain that it had been launched without a proper basis.

The original Russia investigation was opened in July 2016 after the FBI learned from an Australian diplomat that a Trump campaign associate named George Papadopoulos had claimed to know of “dirt” that the Russians had on Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in the form of hacked emails.

But revelations over the following months laid bare flaws with the investigation, including errors and omissions in Justice Department applications to eavesdrop on a former Trump campaign aide, Carter Page, as well as the reliance by the FBI on a dossier of uncorroborated or discredited information compiled by an British ex-spy, Christopher Steele.

Durham’s team delved deep into those mistakes, finding that investigators did not corroborate a “single substantive allegation” in the so-called Steele dossier and ignored or rationalized what it asserts was exculpatory information that Trump associates had provided to FBI confidential informants.

Durham’s mandate was to scrutinize government decisions, and identify possible misconduct, in the early days of the Trump-Russia probe. His appointment was cheered by Trump, who in a 2019 interview with Fox News said Durham was “supposed to be the smartest and the best.” He and his supporters hoped it would expose a “deep state” conspiracy within the top echelons of the FBI and other agencies to derail Trump’s presidency and candidacy.

Durham and his team cast a broad net, interviewing top officials at the FBI, Justice Department and CIA. In his first year on the job, he traveled with Barr to Italy to meet with government officials as Trump himself asked the Australian prime minister and other leaders to help with the probe. Weeks before his December 2020 resignation as attorney general, Barr appointed Durham as a Justice Department special counsel to ensure that he would continue his work in a Democratic administration.

The slow pace of the probe irked Trump, who berated Barr before he left office about the whereabouts of a report that would not be released for several more years. By the end of the Trump administration, only one criminal case had been brought, while the abrupt departure of Durham’s top deputy in the final months of Trump’s tenure raised questions about whether the team was in sync.

Despite expectations that Durham might charge senior government officials, his team produced only three prosecutions. A former FBI lawyer pleaded guilty to altering an email the FBI relied on in applying to eavesdrop on an ex-Trump campaign aide. Two other defendants — a lawyer for the Clinton campaign and a Russian-American think tank analyst — were both acquitted on charges of lying to the FBI.



  1. There is no federal agency that comes close to the FBI in it’s loss of prestige and trust over the past ten years .

    What Trump did to the presidency the FBI did itself in it’s opposition to him. Difference is that when it comes to public trust the presidency was on very weak footing, at best, even before Trump came along. Whereas ten years ago the FBI had a steller reputation

  2. There was this clip on msdnc of this clown joe Scarborough waxing poetic how the house committee has zero evidence and no smoking gun on the Biden crime family

    This guy spent years years covering trump Russia collusion and evidence was obviously not a requirement for him then.

    These guys are so full of themselves it is beyond

  3. An excellent conclusion.

    FBI should have looked the other way as a lawless campaign was receiving assistance from Russia.

    No wonder he lost 2 court cases.

  4. After 4 years, $6.8 million, and 3 low lever prosecutions (2 of which he LOST), all he could do is provide 396 pages of speculation and unsupported personal conclusions that the investigation should not have been initiated. Where are all the deep state crooks and treasonous FBI agents that Trump promised would be exposed and sent to jail?? Not even ONE criminal referral to DOJ for consideration. Did it really take 4 years and $6+ million dollars to reach this outcome?

  5. @gadolhaboring:

    “According to biannual reports released by the special counsel’s office, Mueller and his team spent $12.3 million in direct spending between his appointment on May 17, 2017 and Sept. 30, 2018. The office also said it incurred $12.9 million in “indirect” Justice Department spending, a category it described as “neither legally required” for disclosure, nor reported in filings by previous special counsels.

    On average, the office spent roughly $8.4 million per each six-month period. If the final statement — which has still not been released — remains on par with previous costs, total spending from the investigation is expected to reach $34 million in both direct and indirect spending.”

    All because the 2 ugly lowlife Yids, Schiff & Nadler, wanted to curry favor with their democrat idols.

  6. Everyone and his brother were meeting with Russians in that campaign. The degenerate immoral liar said “no one” in his campaign met with Russians.

  7. Intelligence agencies have controlled the last few elections.

    Virtually every recent conspiracy theory shown to be true. Every hoax, a hoax.