James Clapper, a CNN contributor and former Director of National Intelligence, admitted last Friday that what the Obama administration did to the Trump campaign "meets the dictionary definition of spying."
Clapper, who served as the DNI during the Obama administration, appeared on CNN's Situation Room to discuss new revelations that the FBI sent an undercover agent to meet with George Papadopoulos in London in 2016, backtracking from his prior comments about there not being any spying.
Recent Stories in Politics
"Was it spying?"asked host Wolf Blitzer.
"Well, yeah I guess it meets the dictionary definition of spying—surveillance or spying, a term I don't particularly like," Clapper said. "It's not a term used by intelligence people. It has a negative connotation, a rogue operation, out of control, not in compliance of the law, and that's not the case at all."
Last month, Clapper slammed Attorney General William Barr's assertion that Trump's 2016 presidential campaign was spied on, saying his claim was "stunning and scary."
"I thought it was both stunning and scary," Clapper said. "I was amazed at that and rather disappointed that the attorney general would say such a thing… The term ‘spying' has all kinds of negative connotations, and I have to believe he chose that term deliberately."
"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 added.