The internal watchdog for the U.S. Department of Justice will release a highly-anticipated report Monday answering accusations by the Trump administration that federal authorities illegally spied on President Donald Trump’s campaign while searching for evidence of collusion between it and Russia.
The report by department Inspector General Michael Horowitz, which is expected to be hundreds of pages long, could settle administration complaints that began two years ago. It will be the conclusion of a review Horowitz promised in March 2018 to examine the conduct of federal authorities to determine if the FBI broke or abused any rules in investigating the Trump campaign.
The president has repeatedly accused the bureau, under former President Barack Obama, of spying on him and trying to ruin his campaign.
Some Republicans have claimed the bureau abused its authority when it was investigating Carter Page, a former campaign adviser. Other accusations say the FBI improperly relied on a “dossier” from a former British spy to receive legal approval for spying on Page.
Democrats have argued that the bureau acted entirely within its authority and properly examined figures in the Trump campaign.
The former spy, Christopher Steele, is a key part of the case because Republicans argue he was hired to aid the 2016 campaign of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. Therefore, they say, the FBI was working in step with the Democrats in an effort to defeat Trump.
The report might also document how the FBI originally arrived at its decision to target Page for surveillance.
The report by special counsel Robert Mueller earlier this year concluded that investigators found no concrete evidence of collusion between Trump’s campaign and Moscow. It did, however, note several “episodes” in which Trump may have obstructed the investigation.
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