Hirono slams Barr use of 'spying': 'When Barr opens his mouth, Trump's words come popping out'

Sen. Mazie HironoMazie Keiko HironoHillicon Valley: Washington preps for Mueller report | Barr to hold Thursday presser | Lawmakers dive into AI ethics | FCC chair moves to block China Mobile | Dem bill targets 'digital divide' | Microsoft denies request for facial recognition tech Dems introduce bill to tackle 'digital divide' Overnight Energy: Collins receives more donations from Texas oil, gas industry than from Maine residents | Interior chief left meetings off schedule | Omar controversy jeopardizes Ocasio-Cortez trip to coal mine MORE (D-Hawaii) on Thursday criticized William BarrWilliam Pelham BarrLove or hate Trump, Mueller report doesn't matter Immigration judge calls Barr's move to deny asylum-seekers bond hearings 'highly problematic' Trump's job approval ticks up 2 points: Gallup MORE, saying it is "astounding" that the attorney general said he thinks "spying" on President TrumpDonald John TrumpRussia's election interference is a problem for the GOP Pence to pitch trade deal during trip to Michigan: report Iran oil minister: US made 'bad mistake' in ending sanctions waivers MORE campaign occurred. 

Hirono, appearing on CNN's "New Day," said the remark shows that "when Barr opens his mouth, Trump’s words come popping out."

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"I’m sure that made Trump very happy because it totally played into the Trump narrative that this is all some kind of a plot to get him," Hirono said.

“I found it astounding that the attorney general would use a highly-charged word like 'spying.’ But he sounded like the president to me," she added.

Barr made the remark Wednesday during a Senate Appropriations subcommittee hearing, adding that he needs to "explore" the issue.

“I think spying did occur,” Barr said. “But the question is whether it was adequately predicated and I’m not suggesting it wasn’t adequately predicated, but I need to explore that.”

“I am going to be reviewing both the genesis and the conduct of intelligence activities directed at the Trump campaign during 2016,” Barr added. “A lot of this has already been investigated and a substantial portion that’s being investigated is being investigated by the Office of the Inspector General of the department.”