House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes is asking the federal surveillance court for transcripts from hearings where warrants were granted to spy on former President Donald Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.
Nunes asked Rosemary Colyer, the presiding judge on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC), for transcripts of any hearings “associated with the initial [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act] application or subsequent renewals related to electronic surveillance of Carter Page.”
Fox News obtained the letter sent Wednesday.
Republican lawmakers, including Nunes, have alleged that the FBI and Justice Department misled the FISA court in the applications for the Page spy warrants. The applications relied heavily on the unverified Steele dossier, and made “material omissions” regarding the salacious document, including that the Clinton campaign and DNC financed the dossier project. (RELATED: Senators Lay Out The Case Against Christopher Steele)
“The Committee found that the FBI and DOJ failed to disclose the specific political actors paying for uncorroborated information that formed a substantial part of the FISA application, misled the FISC regarding dissemination of this information, and failed to correct these errors in the subsequent renewals,” reads Nunes’s letter.
Some lawmakers have seen the FBI and DOJ’s application for the FISA warrant, but none have seen transcripts of the arguments made by U.S. officials during the hearings.
The FBI and Justice Department obtained its initial warrant against Page on Oct. 21, 2016, about a month after he left the Trump campaign. The warrants were renewed three more times, in January, April and June.
Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee released a four-page memo last week laying out the complaints about the Page FISA warrant process. They were joined by Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley and South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, both Republicans, who recently referred dossier author Christopher Steele to the FBI for possible criminal investigation.
Grassley and Graham, who are on the Senate Judiciary Committee, claimed that Steele withheld information from the FBI about his contacts with reporters while he was working on the dossier.
Steele met with numerous reporters, including Yahoo! News’ Michael Isikoff.
Isikoff published an article on Sept. 23, 2016, based on his meeting with Steele. That piece, which laid out allegations about Page’s activities in Moscow in July 2016, was used in the FBI/DOJ application for the FISA warrants. The applications failed to note that Isikoff’s article was itself based on information from Steele.
The dossier and Isikoff’s report both alleged that Page met secretly with two Kremlin insiders during his Moscow trip. Page, an energy consultant based in New York City, has vehemently denied the allegations and is suing Yahoo!
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