“With what happened on the weekend, with these tweets, you are going to have an awful lot of population of the CIA and FBI at battle stations now pushing back at the administration now for no other reason but to defend themselves against a president who has accused them of a felony.”
—General Hayden on the CIA & FBI pushing back against President Trump
Former Director of the CIA and NSA General Michael Hayden joined Kilmeade and Friends today to discuss the possibility of Obama hold-overs in the intelligence community playing games to undermine President Trump. After President Trump tweeted over the weekend about the Obama administration tapping his phones in Trump Tower before he was elected, an Obama spokesperson said any suggestions that Obama had ordered that surveillance were “simply false”. Regarding how President Trump could have the intel that his phone was tapped, General Hayden said, “That’s my question too. How do you know this? And by the way if you have a question about this, why don’t you remember that you’re the President of the United States and call on the agency of the United States government for some answers, which he can do.”
General Hayden also spoke about the CIA & FBI pushing back on President Trump in order to defend themselves, Attorney General Sessions misspeaking,the Senate and House investigating the President’s possible connections with Russia and his belief President Obama had nothing to do with wiretapping President Trump.
General Hayden on President Trump saying President Obama Wire Tapped him:
(HAYDEN) That’s my question too. How do you know this? And by the way if you have a question about this, why don’t you remember that you’re the President of the United States and call on the agency of the United States government for some answers, which he can do.
General Hayden on the CIA & FBI pushing back against President Trump:
(HAYDEN)With what happened on the weekend, with these tweets, you are going to have an awful lot of population of the CIA and FBI at battle stations now pushing back at the administration now for no other reason but to defend themselves against a president who has accused them of a felony.
General Hayden on Attorney General Jeff Sessions:
(HAYDEN) I saw that, I watched what took place. I know Senator Sessions, he is a good and decent man. He has never treated me with anything other than respect and fairness. I think he misspoke, I think a lot of people are hyperventilating saying he should resign or guilty of perjury but Brian this is where we are not with the tone and tenure of this political debate. Both sides need to step back from this.
General Hayden on if there will be a legitimate House & Senate investigation into The Trump Administration colluding with Russian officials:
(HAYDEN) I do and I think the Senate Committee is ahead of the House, I think I would look to the Senate to be the first place to crank out some conclusions. Let me make a couple of predictions here in regard to collusion and contact with the Russians, I think this is going to end up being inconclusive, there is going to be no evidence of a specific crime here or there.
General Hayden on President Obama potentially ordering wiretapping of President Trump and Trump Tower:
(HAYDEN) With regard to what President Obama may or may not have done with regard to wiretapping, I think that goes away, I just don’t think that’s true
On former National Intelligence Director James Clapper denying on Meet the Press that there was no FISA court order for surveillance of Trump Tower:
(HAYDEN) Jim would not have said what he said yesterday and would not have said it with such confidence, and by the way he wasn’t getting pressed on it he volunteered, yes I can deny it. So let’s parse that just very quickly, Brian. Number 1, he’s saying that if there were a FISA order there for foreign intelligence purposes he certainly would’ve known it because it was under his preview… They could have FISA warrants for their own purposes. State of New York, city of New York. What Jim said was, foreign intelligence purposes they come through me, it didn’t happen. Counter-intelligence law-enforcement purposes in this case I’m sure I would’ve seen it, I didn’t see it, I don’t believe it happened. And then you’ve got indirectly the director of the FBI saying it didn’t come from him either.
General Hayden on How hard is it to get turned down by the FISA court:
(HAYDEN) If you lump this into the statistics this would not have been a turn down. This is the normal process you take it to the court, the court goes ‘No, no, no. Not that broad, you’ve got to tuck it in here, tuck it in here.’ So this actually is fairly routine. But now let’s deconstruct what we just heard here. If this is true, and that’s a really big if, I don’t know that. If this is true an article 3 judge has concluded based upon evidence produced by FBI that there is probable cause that someone in the Trump campaign, in Trump Tower, I don’t know. Is an agent of a foreign power…
(Kilmeade) Or contacting agents of a foreign power.
(HAYDEN) No, no, no. You cannot target the US person without having probable cause that he or she is involved in criminal activity or is an agent of a foreign power. What you just described is fishing. This isn’t fishing, this is hunting. This is targeted against someone because you’ve proven to a judge that you’ve met the probable cause standard that that person, the American, is the agent of a foreign power.
On the possibility of things getting worse for President Trump after his latest round of controversial tweets:
(HAYDEN) Yeah, it could… What we now have is a sense of confrontation between the new administration and its really, pretty tight political team down town, and what I would call the permanent government, the guys who don’t change out in change of administration. We can’t make that a line of confrontation. The Trump administration can’t be successful with that as a line of confrontation, so both sides I think need to kind of take a deep breath, step back and get back into their more accustomed roles. The intel guys, the permanent government: quit talking to the press. The administration: bring these permanent government guys into your deliberations so that they feel as if they own some of the decisions you’re making.
On what CIA Director Mike Pompeo can do to help:
(HAYDEN) He is doing it, he’s actually established a relationship with the president. Now we’re not doing the PDD, we’re not getting the daily brief daily, but I’ve heard that Mike’s getting in there about three times a week. That’s a good thing to represent number one, the people at the agency, but also to make sure that as policies develop you have the benefit of the intelligence view. Intelligence doesn’t dictate policy but it can create the left and the right-hand boundaries of logical policy discussions so you don’t end up stepping on landmines.
General Hayden’s advice for President Trump:
(HAYDEN) Number 1 no tweets. Number 2, be that president we saw last week talking to congress. Work and I mean this, work on being inclusive, work on being calm, work on building a constituency and support for what it is you intend to do. Not just with your base but a little bit with the opposition and especially with the government that has to carry it out.