Senate Dems demand release of Fusion GPS interview

Senate Dems demand release of Fusion GPS interview
© Victoria Sarno Jordan

Two Democratic senators are calling on the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee to release the transcript of its meeting with the CEO of the research firm that produced the controversial dossier about President TrumpDonald John TrumpSanders apologizes to Biden for supporter's op-ed Jayapal: 'We will end up with another Trump' if the US doesn't elect progressive Democrats: McConnell impeachment trial rules a 'cover up,' 'national disgrace' MORE

Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseSanders defends vote against USMCA: 'Not a single damn mention' of climate change The Hill's Morning Report — President Trump on trial Overnight Energy: Schumer votes against USMCA, citing climate impact | Republicans offer details on their environmental proposals | Microsoft aims to be carbon negative by 2030 MORE (D-R.I.), who sit on the committee, asked Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) in a letter to release the full transcript of Fusion GPS CEO Glenn Simpson’s August interview.

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“The American people deserve the facts. There is simply no reason to keep the Simpson testimony (or other testimony before our committee for that matter) hidden while this distraction goes on,” the senators said in the letter, which is dated Jan. 7.

The lawmakers cite “selective leaks” and attacks leveled against Simpson as they made their case for the transcript’s release. 

“Diverting our focus from Russian interference to Glenn Simpson or Christopher Steele is, in our view, a misallocation of scarce resources,” the lawmakers said. “To the extent that you believe continued attention to those individuals is warranted, the American people should be allowed to decide for themselves.”

The letter comes after Grassley and Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamWhite House appoints GOP House members to advise Trump's impeachment team Hypocrisy is the currency of the realm for GOP in the age of Trump Lawmakers push back at Pentagon's possible Africa drawdown MORE (R-S.C.), who also sits on the Senate Judiciary Committee, asked the Justice Department last week to open a criminal investigation of Christopher Steele, the former British spy who authored the dossier. 

A lawyer for the research firm criticized the referral, suggesting it could be an “attempt to discredit government sources.”

Simpson has also appeared in front of the House Intelligence Committee, which is conducting its own probe into Russia's attempts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election and any potential ties between Trump campaign staff members and Moscow.