GOP lawmaker on memo: FBI conduct ‘constitutes treason’
Republican Rep. Paul Gosar (Ariz.) said the FBI’s surveillance of a former Trump campaign adviser detailed in a controversial intelligence memo released Friday “constitutes treason.”
Gosar said in a statement that he will co-author a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions seeking “criminal prosecution against these traitors to our nation,” referring to those who authorized the surveillance warrant.
My full statement on the declassified memo: pic.twitter.com/eRo6ugpWQ9
— Rep. Paul Gosar, DDS (@RepGosar) February 2, 2018
The House Intelligence Committee memo, declassified for public release on Friday, claims that a dossier of information alleging ties between President Trump and Russia “formed an essential part” of the warrant obtained in October 2016 for surveillance on Carter Page. At the time, Page was no longer an adviser to the Trump campaign.
Gosar zeroed-in on the Republican memo’s claim that the surveillance requests to the FBI and Justice Department did not mention that the work of Christopher Steele, the former British spy who compiled the dossier, was funded in part by Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee.
“This is third world politics where the official government agencies are used as campaign attack dogs,” Gosar said.
The Republican called former director and deputy FBI directors and two former deputy attorney generals “traitors to our nation” for approving the surveillance request of Page and three extensions on the former Trump adviser.
Congressional Republicans are now saying that the memo proves that thethe Justice Department investigation into Russian election meddling, led by special counsel Robert Mueller, is tainted by political bias in the FBI.
Democrats argue the memo omits key information about the Russia investigation and the surveillance warrant for Page, which the FBI obtained roughly three months after it began a counterintelligence probe looking at the Trump campaign.
They are pushing to release their own memo that they say provides a different picture.
“The premise of the Nunes memo is that the FBI and DOJ corruptly sought a FISA warrant on a former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser, Carter Page, and deliberately misled the court as part of a systematic abuse of the FISA process.
“As the Minority memo makes clear, none of this is true. The FBI had good reason to be concerned about Carter Page and would have been derelict in its responsibility to protect the country had it not sought a FISA warrant,” Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee said in a statement.
Applications for the secret surveillance warrants typically involve several layers of authentication. Justice Department lawyers must show probable cause that the target of the surveillance is acting as an agent of a foreign power.