Two top Republican senators are signaling that the intelligence community's top watchdog should probe potential "leaks" to reporters after the 2016 presidential election about the investigation into Russia's election meddling and President TrumpDonald TrumpBiden heading to Kansas City to promote infrastructure package Trump calls Milley a 'f---ing idiot' over Afghanistan withdrawal First rally for far-right French candidate Zemmour prompts protests, violence MORE's campaign. 
 
Sens. Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonFauci calls Ron Johnson's AIDS comment 'preposterous': 'I don't have any clue of what he's talking about' Wisconsin senators ask outsiders not to exploit parade attack 'for their own political purposes' It's time to bury ZombieCare once and for all MORE (R-Wis.) and Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyFormer Sen. Bob Dole dies at 98 Alarm grows over smash-and-grab robberies amid holiday season GOP blocks bill to expand gun background checks after Michigan school shooting MORE (R-Iowa) — the chairmen of the Senate Homeland Security and Finance committees, respectively — sent a letter on Monday to Michael Atkinson, the inspector general for the intelligence community, asking if his office was investigating "apparent leaks" from the intelligence agencies. 
 
"Texts and emails demonstrate the need to investigate leaks from agencies or entities other than FBI," the two senators wrote in their letter
 
ADVERTISEMENT
If an investigation isn't ongoing, the two senators want an explanation from Atkinson on why the watchdog office hasn't opened a probe. 
 
A spokesperson for the intelligence community's inspector general office didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. 
 
The letter comes as Grassley, Johnson and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamSenate Democrat says he will 'settle' for less aggressive gun control reform 'because that will save lives' Graham emerges as go-to ally for Biden's judicial picks This Thanksgiving, skip the political food fights and talk UFOs instead MORE (R-S.C.) are laying the groundwork for their own probe into the 2016 election, including the FBI's handling of the probe into former Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonRepublican Ohio Senate candidate slams JD Vance over previous Trump comments Budowsky: Why GOP donors flock to Manchin and Sinema Countering the ongoing Republican delusion MORE's emails and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant application on former Trump campaign aide Carter Page. 
 
The two senators previously requested a briefing from Attorney General William BarrBill BarrHolding defiant Trump witnesses to account, Jan. 6 committee carries out Congress's constitutional role Jan. 6 panel recommends contempt charges for Trump DOJ official Appeals court questions Biden DOJ stance on Trump obstruction memo MORE on his effort to investigate alleged "spying" during the 2016 election after Barr told lawmakers that he was looking into the issue.
 
Grassley and Johnson, in their Monday letter, point to a set of text messages between former FBI officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page that they argue points to evidence that other intelligence agencies were leaking to the media during the 2016 election. 
 
In one text message from December 2016 included in the Grassley-Johnson letter, Strzok is quoted as texting that he thought "our sisters have begun leaking like mad." The letter doesn't clarify who "sisters" refers to, and Grassley and Johnson also appear to be in the dark about who it is. 
 
In another email, Strzok in April 2017 posits that an "agency" got more information than he previously realized and adds "might explain all these weird/seemingly incorrect leads all these media folks have. Would also highlight agency as source of some of the leaks." 
 
The GOP senators also appear not to know who the "agency" in question is, asking in their letter to the intelligence community watchdog who Strzok is referring to and why he thinks it implies an agency is leaking. But the two senators say in their letter that Strzok's email is in response to a Guardian article about British intelligence agencies alerting their U.S. counterparts about contact between members of Trump's campaign and Moscow.