Former U.S. Attorney Joe DiGenova said Obama-era DOJ and FBI officials are lying and trying to parse "spying" and "politically motivated spying" because they are frightened of Attorney General Bill Barr.
"This is a scandal of immense proportions," DiGenova told FNC's Laura Ingraham on Tuesday. "The fact that they have to lie about it now after denying it, just shows you how bad off they are and how frightened they are a Bill Barr. And John, real quick there's also an issue with what Comey claimed Loretta Lynch said about the Hillary Clinton e-mail investigation."
INGRAHAM: No redos. Joe, Nadler was over on CNN tonight saying they're coming - they're going to hold McGahn in contempt.
JOE DIGENOVA. FORMER US ATTORNEY: Well, McGahn was the counsel to the President. He gave 30 hours of testimony to Mueller. That was not a waiver of executive privilege, because Mueller is in the executive branch and was an employee of the President of the United States.
So there still is executive privilege when it comes to testimony from the Hill, as well as various confidentiality privileges that the President has such as consultation and communication, so they're on very strong legal ground. And if the House litigates contempt on McGahn, they're going to lose.
INGRAHAM: John, is it customary for folks out there who aren't you know well versed in legal issues, constitutional issues such as this executive privilege. Is it common for White House Counsel to testify on the Hill ever? I mean, I just don't recall. Maybe I'm not recalling it, but I don't recall it and past administrations.
JOHN YOO, FORMER DEPUTY ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL: No, in fact, that's the grounds on which the Justice Department has set and it's opinion why McGahn can't testify.
According to the Justice Department and lower courts that have looked at this, the aides that are closest to the President, like the Chief of Staff, the National Security Advisor and the White House Counsel they're basically extensions of the President himself.
And so just like Congress can't drag President Trump to testify before it, because that would show disrespect to a coordinate branch of government, it'd be like it's of Congress drag Chief Justice John Roberts before it to testify, they can't do that either.
So too you can't drag the closest aides to the President in front of Congress and force them to answer questions.
Second, the Justice Department makes a very good point which is if Congress really want to harass the President and prevent him from doing his job doing the business of the country, it could just subpoena and keep bringing all of these staff before it.
INGRAHAM: Yes, well, this is what they're - I mean, this kind of seems to be the goal here. And by the way, the other breaking news tonight came courtesy of these closed-door transcripts that were released by the House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Doug Collins.
Now these were interviews that were conducted with a number of Obama era folks, including Attorney General Loretta Lynch. Now here's one interesting exchange. This is Nadler questioning her. I think this is in December of last year.
"Do you believe the FBI or DOJ ever investigated the Trump campaign for political purposes?" Lynch says, "I know they did not" Nadler then says, "And how would you have reacted if you had received a request of this nature from any presidential administration?" She says, "I would have declined it and told them how inappropriate it".
Joe, after what we now know, what about that?
DIGENOVA: Well that's a sloppy question, because he said "for political purposes". But she would say they were investigated for non-political--
INGRAHAM: Legitimate purpose.
DIGENOVA: In fact, that's the defense now of the Obama administration DOJ, FBI people. Well,when we said there was no spying, we meant there was no politically motivated spying. There was spying, but it was because we really believed that the Russians were influencing that.
Look, this is a scandal of immense proportions. The fact that they have to lie about it now after denying it, just shows you how bad off they are and how frightened they are a Bill Barr. And John, real quick there's also an issue with what Comey claimed Loretta Lynch said about the Hillary Clinton e-mail investigation.
And this is another quote from the December 19th interview. She said, "I was quite surprised that Comey characterized it in this way. We did have a conversation about it, so I wasn't surprised that he remembered that we met and talked about it.
But I was quite surprised that that this was his characterization of it, because that was not how I conveyed it to him, certainly not how it was intended." calling the probe a matter instead of an investigation.