‘He got played’: Trump mocked over tweet-like statement calling for John Durham’s report

Lawyer resigned in February but retained his special counsel designation

Graig Graziosi
Saturday 27 March 2021 17:11
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Trump says he prefers press releases to using Twitter
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In a bizarre missive harkening back to his days on Twitter, Donald Trump openly pondered whether special counsel John Durham – who is investigating the FBI agents that monitored Trump's campaign and its ties to Russia – was still alive.

Why Mr Trump thought that the answer would be anything other than "yes" is unknown.

"Where’s Durham? Is he a living, breathing human being? Will there ever be a Durham report?” Mr Trump said Friday night in an update from his 45 Office email account.

Even though Mr Trump has been exiled from social media, his critics are not, and used their platform to criticise the strange statement.

Ross Garber, a CNN political and legal commentator and lawyer, said the former president should not hold his breath waiting for Mr Durham.

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"Trump seems to still not realise he got played by whoever sold him on John Durham for this mission," Mr Garber said.

Gary Legum, a writer, pointed out the absurdity of the Tweet-length "official statement".

"I usually object to retweeting Trump statements because otherwise what was the point of banning him, but man, is this funny," he wrote. "Trump wandering around Mar-a-Lago, shovelling cheeseburgers into his yapping maw, ketchup stains up and down his golf shirt, screaming to see the Durham report."

Naturally, Trump diehards and QAnon adherents saw the former president's statement as a warning to his opponents that he was about to unload on them. Many interpreted the statement not as Mr Trump expressing frustration, but of teasing out his next move.

Mr Durham spent two years investigating the former president's ties to Russia and was eventually named special council by former Attorney General William Barr.

Mr Barr assigned Mr Durham to the investigation because the Trump Justice Department alleged that the FBI's "Crossfire Hurricane" investigation was improper and based in political bias.

“Spying on a campaign is a big deal; I think spying did occur. The question is whether it was adequately predicated. I am not saying that improper surveillance occurred; I am concerned about it. There is a basis for my concern,” Mr Barr said.

Mr Trump's impatience with Mr Durham is indicative of his desire to see evidence proving that the FBI's Russia-centred investigation was carried out illegally.

That would render any evidence collected against him or his associates invalid in potential legal proceedings.

With Mr Trump no longer in office and no report or updates from Mr Durham, it is looking increasingly more unlikely that a smoking gun favouring the former president will be unveiled anytime soon.

Mr Durham was asked to resign shortly after Joe Biden took office. He stepped down from his post as a US attorney for Connecticut, but ultimately retained his status as special counsel due to his ongoing investigation.

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