During an interview on "Sunday Morning Futures" with Sen. Lindsey Graham, FOX News host Maria Bartiromo asked the Judiciary Committee Chairman about what former Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos told her last week about his interactions with alleged undercover Western intelligence agents that were later used to connect him to the Trump-Russia collusion narrative.
"We had George Papadopoulos on this program last weekend. And it sure sounded to me like there were informants thrown his way," Bartiromo explained. "They send him to Rome so that he could meet this Joseph Mifsud, who just dropped that bomb on him, who said, Russia has Hillary Clinton e-mails."
She asked: "So is that part of their strategy? This was an incredible strategy that they had. It wasn't just the [Steele] dossier. It was informants. It was a media leak strategy. And it was anything that the media can take to take down the president."
MARIA BARTIROMO, FOX NEWS: We went to break a minute ago talking about the potential that the president will declassify some of these FISA-related documents.
I don't know why the president hasn't done it yet. He said that he will do it. He told me that and others. Do you expect him to do it? And what will we learn from those documents?
GRAHAM: Well, I think you will learn that the FBI was on notice that Christopher Steele wasn't a reliable informant when it came to Trump, that he was being paid for by the Democratic Party, That his work product had not been vetted, and that he was out to get Trump, and they used the dossier anyway.
I think you're going to learn a lot about how the counterintelligence investigation actually opened up, that Papadopoulos wasn't working with the Russians. They put it in his head that the Russians stole Clinton e-mails.
All this will be coming sooner, rather than later. And I'm glad the president waited until after Mueller was done, so nobody can accuse him of interfering with the Mueller investigation, because it's now over.
BARTIROMO: We had George Papadopoulos on this program last weekend. And it sure sounded to me like there were informants thrown his way, even getting him a job from the International Center for Law Practice. They reached out to him on LinkedIn. They gave him a job.
And then, when he left in March of 2016, he said: I'm leaving. I'm going to go work for the Trump campaign. They said, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. Before you leave, we want to send you to Rome. We want to have this whole big paid vacation for you to go to Rome so that you could meet all these important people.
They send him to Rome so that he could meet this Joseph Mifsud, who just dropped that bomb on him, who said, Russia has Hillary Clinton e-mails.
So is that part of their strategy? This was an incredible strategy that they had. It wasn't just the dossier. It was informants. It was a media leak strategy. And it was anything that the media can take to take down the president.
GRAHAM: Well, I think -- right. And I think here's the big point.
Did they catch Papadopoulos working with the Russians or did they start the narrative, put it in Papadopoulos' mind? Here's what I think happened. Papadopoulos wasn't working with the Russians. They created that narrative by telling him about e-mails being stolen by the Russians.
And he was repeating what he was told by our own people. So there was never a situation where Papadopoulos was working with the Russians to try to affect the 2016 election. This was all a setup, I think. And we will know more -- and we will know more here soon.
BARTIROMO: Well, was it also a setup to set up Donald Trump Jr.?
I mean, what is this subpoena of Donald Trump Jr. coming out of your colleagues and the Senate Intel Committee?
GRAHAM: As I understand it, this subpoena relates to what Michael Cohen said about some meetings and about the Trump Tower in Russia.
All I can say is that Richard Burr is a very good friend. He's trying hard to be bipartisan. But anything based on what Michael Cohen said is worthless testimony. Michael Cohen is a worthless witness. And if I were Donald Trump Jr.'s lawyer, I would tell him, you don't need to go back into this environment anymore. You have been there for hours and hours and hours, and nothing being alleged here changes the outcome of the Mueller investigation.
I would call it a day.
BARTIROMO: But look at how they're treating William Barr right now. They're trying to rip Bill Barr.
BARTIROMO: Contempt of Congress, tell me about that. Why is it so hard to actually look at what took place by a cabal of people at the top of the FBI and the DOJ in 2016, a major election, a presidential election?
They tried to change the election. Why wouldn't the Democrats understand and see this for what it is and actually be honest and say this -- this will not take place in our democracy?
And yet, instead, we have got the Democrats ripping Bill Barr, who they said was an honest broker at the beginning.