Grassley blasts Feinstein's release of Fusion GPS transcript as 'confounding'

A spokesman for Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyThe Hill's Morning Report - What to watch for as Mueller’s probe winds down Overnight Health Care — Presented by National Taxpayers Union — Drug pricing fight centers on insulin | Florida governor working with Trump to import cheaper drugs | Dems blast proposed ObamaCare changes Drug pricing fight centers on insulin MORE (R-Iowa) on Tuesday blasted Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinFeinstein says she thinks Biden will run after meeting with him Trump judicial nominee Neomi Rao seeks to clarify past remarks on date rape Bottom Line MORE's (D-Calif.) release of a transcribed interview with the co-founder of the firm behind a controversial dossier on the Trump campaign's ties to Russia, calling the move "confounding."

In a statement, the spokesman, Taylor Foy, said that Feinstein's decision to release the transcript without first consulting Grassley compromises the Judiciary Committee's ability to conduct its investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

"Her action undermines the integrity of the committee’s oversight work and jeopardizes its ability to secure candid voluntary testimony relating to the independent recollections of future witnesses," Foy said. 

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He noted that no other congressional panel had released transcripts of private interviews related to the Russia investigations and suggested that Feinstein's decision may discourage potential witnesses from testifying before the Judiciary Committee. 

Feinstein, the Judiciary Committee's top Democrat, posted the 300-page transcript of the committee's interview with Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson, breaking with Grassley, who had opposed the release of the transcript.

Fusion GPS had demanded that the transcript be released. 

The private research firm commissioned the 2016 dossier, which includes salacious and unverified allegations about President TrumpDonald John TrumpSchiff urges GOP colleagues to share private concerns about Trump publicly US-China trade talks draw criticism for lack of women in pictures Overnight Defense: Trump to leave 200 troops in Syria | Trump, Kim plan one-on-one meeting | Pentagon asks DHS to justify moving funds for border wall MORE. The document was compiled by Christopher Steele, a former British intelligence official, who was hired by Fusion GPS. 

Grassley and Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamActing Defense chief calls Graham an 'ally' after tense exchange Five takeaways from McCabe’s allegations against Trump FBI’s top lawyer believed Hillary Clinton should face charges, but was talked out of it MORE (R-S.C.) have referred Steele to the Justice Department for criminal investigation.