WASHINGTON — House Select Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes called foul on the leaks of classified information relating to conversations between former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn and a Russian ambassador.
“Any intelligence agency cannot listen to Americans’ phone calls,” Nunes told reporters Tuesday night. “If there’s inadvertent collection that you know is overseas there’s a whole process in place for that.”
He explained, “It’s pretty clear that’s not the case, so then they could have been listening to someone else and inadvertently picked up an American. If that happens, there’s a whole process in place to where they have to immediately get rid of the information unless it’s like high level national security issue and then someone would have to unmask the name — someone at the highest levels.”
“So in this case it would be General Flynn and then how did that happen. Then if they did that, then how does all that get out to the public which is another leak of classified information,” Nunes added. “I’m pretty sure the FBI didn’t have a warrant on Michael Flynn.”
The California Republican said he expects the FBI to tell him exactly what is going on.
Flynn resigned from his post Monday night.
The Washington Post reported last week that intelligence officials recorded his conversations with the Russian ambassador to the U.S. before Trump officially took office. The recordings, according to The Post, seemed to contradict Flynn’s claim that he had not talked to the ambassador about loosening U.S. sanctions with Russia.
Democrats are calling for an independent investigation into not only the Flynn matter but also other Trump personnel. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer went as far as to call on Attorney General Jeff Sessions to recuse himself from any investigation.