Gowdy & Goodlatte Call for Special Counsel on FISA: Current Probe ‘Has No Jurisdiction’ Over 24 Witnesses
Two top House Republicans repeated their call for a special counsel to look into alleged abuse of the FISA process, in the way a warrant was granted to spy on a former Trump adviser based on an unverified dossier with Russian sourcing.
Trey Gowdy of South Carolina, who chairs the oversight committee, and Bob Goodlatte of Virginia, who chairs the judiciary committee, said Attorney General Jeff Sessions must appoint a special counsel.
The two men said they have faith in Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz to do a thorough job in the matter, but note that he doesn’t have jurisdiction over two dozen important witnesses.
Gowdy said the IG can compel testimony mostly from people who currently work in the department.
That rubric leaves out former FBI Director Jim Comey, outgoing Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, Comey Chief of Staff James Rybicki, Clinton adviser Sid Blumenthal and others.
Goodlatte said the FISA court process was “abused” by the fact it granted permission to spy on an American citizen, Carter Page, using “a very suspect source” – the dossier.
Bill Hemmer asked the pair why Congress couldn’t investigate the matter.
“We leak like sieves,” Gowdy said. “[We’ve seen] far fewer leaks from Bob Mueller than [House Intel ranking member] Adam Schiff.”
Hemmer however warned that special counsel investigations don’t always end where their beginning predicts.
“You start with a land deal in Arkansas and you end up with a blue dress,” he said.
Hemmer was referring to the Whitewater land probe, which ultimately led to a perjury charge against President Bill Clinton. The president was caught in an extramarital affair with intern Monica Lewinsky, who was wearing the blue dress.