Don Lemon hosted former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper on his CNN program “CNN Tonight” and asked him what he thought of President Trump’s tweet about the former Obama administration officials in the FBI embedding a spy in Trump’s 2016 campaign.
Lemon read the tweet out for Clapper to respond,
Here’s what the president tweeted this morning he said: “Wow, word seems to be coming out that the Obama FBI ‘SPIED ON THE TRUMP CAMPAIGN WITH AN EMBEDDED INFORMANT.’ Andrew McCarthy says, ‘There’s probably no doubt that they had at least one confidential informant in the campaign.’ If so, this is bigger than Watergate!” That is an extraordinary claim.
Lemon then posed a question to Clapper, “What is the likelihood that it’s true?”
“Well I think this is a hyperbole,” Clapper said, “They may have had someone who was talking to them in the campaign, but you know the focus here —as it was with the intelligence community— is not on the campaign per se but what the Russians were doing to try to instantiate themselves in the campaign or to influence or leverage it.”
“So if there was someone observing that sort of thing, that’s a good thing.”
Clapper said the intelligence community was doing the United States a service by spying on the campaign because the Russians posed a “threat to the very basis of our political system.”