Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC) on Friday asked Attorney General Bill Barr to make available for interviews a laundry list of named and unnamed officials related to the Russia probe.
In a letter to Barr, Graham wrote to Barr that his committee was investigating matters related to the Justice Department and FBI’s handling of the Russia probe, and more specifically, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant the FBI was granted to surveil Trump campaign aide Carter Page.
“In order to further the Committee’s oversight of this important matter, I request that you make the following Department employees available as soon as possible for transcribed interviews,” he wrote.
Graham, a loyal ally of the President’s, recently said he would seek to call witnesses before his committee related to the FISA warrants issued during the Russia probe.
An inspector general’s probe released in December found that there was sufficient evidence to launch the the FBI’s probe of the Trump campaign’s potential ties to Russia, and that there was no political bias behind the probe.
However, the inspector general did find several significant errors and omissions in the FBI’s application to surveil Page.
In addition to the officials Graham requested be made available for interviews, the Judiciary chairman said his committee would be contacting former Department employees and that he would notify the DOJ when those interviews were scheduled.
Graham requested interviews with several unnamed special supervisory agents, case agents, and other officials involved in the Russia probe whose actions were described in the inspector general’s report.
Some of his interview requests were for people whose names commonly show up in the right-wing fever swamps, such as Justice Department official Bruce Ohr, whose wife Nellie Ohr worked for the private firm Fusion GPS, the source of the so-called “Steele Dossier.”
Dana Boente, also on Graham’s list, briefly served as acting attorney general in Trump’s first weeks in office, and again briefly oversaw Russia-related investigations between then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ recusal from the Russia probe and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s confirmation in April 2017.
Several other names on Graham’s list, while not as well-known, provide some hint as to his interests. Gabriel Sanz-Rexach, for example, is named in the IG report as having provided feedback on the FISA application to surveil Page. Graham also requested a talk with Stephen Laycock, who in 2015 was named chief of the Eurasia section in the FBI’s counterintelligence division, as well as with Kieran Ramsey, the FBI’s legal attaché in the U.S. embassy in Rome during the 2016 election.
Read Graham’s letter below:
This post has been updated.