President Trump was on a tear Friday morning, tweeting about a variety of his grievances du jour. The rant concluded with a presidential declaration: that his campaign was “conclusively spied on,” which he equated to “TREASON.”
The president then warned of “long jail sentences” for those who commit the offense.
My Campaign for President was conclusively spied on. Nothing like this has ever happened in American Politics. A really bad situation. TREASON means long jail sentences, and this was TREASON!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 17, 2019
While equivocating the FBI’s surveillance of Trump campaign officials’ contacts with Russians to treason may be out of line, Trump is just stealing his attorney general’s characterization of the launch of the Russia probe by calling it spying. Attorney General William Barr was roundly criticized for telling lawmakers that “spying” occurred at the onslaught of the probe. Trump has latched onto the phrase ever since.
Barr told lawmakers last month that he would review how the probe began and recently directed a prosecutor to look into it.