Apr 11, 2019

Clapper: Barr publicly raising Trump campaign spying concerns is scary

Former National Intelligence Director James Clapper Photo: Sylvain Gaboury/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper criticized Attorney General William Barr on CNN's Anderson Cooper 360° for raising concerns about federal surveillance during President Trump’s 2016 campaign with the Senate Appropriations subcommittee Wednesday.

Details: Clapper told host Anderson Cooper it was "stunning and scary" that Barr told a public hearing this. Barr should've sought a briefing from the Justice Department's inspector general on the investigation into whether the FBI mishandled warrant applications under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, Clapper said.

The backdrop: Barr said during his exchange with the subcommittee he thought "spying did occur" and he needed to explore whether that was adequately predicated, though stressed he wasn't saying this occurred. He said had no evidence he could "cite right now" of wrongdoing by the FBI or Special Counsel Robert Mueller in the Russia investigation. He said he would review "the genesis and conduct" of the probe.

What he's saying: "It would have been far more appropriate for him to just defer to that investigation rather than postulating with apparently no evidence. He just has a feeling that there was spying against the campaign," Clapper told Cooper.

Go deeper: Gang of 8 Democrats condemn Barr for suggesting Trump campaign was spied on

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Bernie Sanders wins Nevada caucus

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders waves to supporters at a campaign rally on Friday in Las Vegas. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Sen. Bernie Sanders is projected to handily win the Nevada Democratic primary caucus, becoming the clear frontrunner among 2020 Democratic presidential primary election candidates.

Why it matters: Nevada is the first state with a diverse population to hold a nominating contest, highlighting candidates' abilities to connect with voters of color — particularly Latino voters.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

South Korea and Italy see spikes in coronavirus cases

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The novel coronavirus has spread to more nations, and the U.S. reports a doubling of its confirmed cases to 34 — while noting these are mostly due to repatriated citizens, emphasizing there's no "community spread" yet in the United States.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed at least 2,362 people and infected more than 77,000 others, mostly in mainland China. New countries to announce infections recently include Israel and Lebanon, while Iran reported its sixth death from the virus. South Korea's confirmed cases jumped from 204 Friday to 433 on Saturday and Italy's case count rose from 3 to 62 by Saturday.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 5 hours ago - Health

America's rundown roads add to farmers' struggles

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

American farmers are struggling to safely use the roads that cut through their fields; decades of neglect and lack of funding have made the routes dangerous.

The big picture: President Trump has long promised to invest billions in rural infrastructure, and his latest proposal would allocate $1 trillion for such projects. Rural America, where many of Trump's supporters live, would see a large chunk of that money.