WSJ associate editor John Bussey weighs in on latest developments in the special counsel investigation. A source close to the matter said the OIG probe, which will examine Strzok's roles in a number of other politically sensitive cases, should be completed by "very early next year.
The task will be exceedingly complex, given Strzok's consequential portfolio. Clinton in connection with her use, as secretary of state, of a private email server. House investigators told Fox News they have long regarded Strzok as a key figure in the chain of events when the bureau, in , received the infamous anti-Trump "dossier" and launched a counterintelligence investigation into Russian meddling in the election that ultimately came to encompass FISA surveillance of a Trump campaign associate.
The "dossier" was a compendium of salacious and largely unverified allegations about then-candidate Trump and others around him that was compiled by the opposition research firm Fusion GPS. The firm's bank records, obtained by House investigators, revealed that the project was funded by the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee. Strzok himself briefed the committee on Dec. The denial of access to Strzok was instead predicated, sources said, on broad "personnel" grounds.
When a month had elapsed, House investigators — having issued three subpoenas for various witnesses and documents — formally recommended to Nunes that DOJ and FBI be held in contempt of Congress. Nunes continued pressing DOJ, including a conversation with Rosenstein as recently as last Wednesday.
That turned out to be 12 days after DOJ and FBI had made Strzok available to the Senate Intelligence Committee, which is conducting its own parallel investigation into the allegations of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin. The Justice Department maintained that the decision to clear Strzok for House interrogation had occurred a few hours prior to the appearance of the Times and Post stories.
The Justice Department maintains that it has been very responsive to the House intel panel's demands, including private briefings for panel staff by senior DOJ and FBI personnel and the production of several hundred pages of classified materials available in a secure reading room at DOJ headquarters on Oct. Sources said Speaker Ryan has worked quietly behind the scenes to try to resolve the clash over dossier-related evidence and witnesses between the House intel panel on the one hand and DOJ and FBI on the other.
In October, however, the speaker took the unusual step of saying publicly that the two agencies were "stonewalling" Congress. All parties agree that some records being sought by the Nunes team belong to categories of documents that have historically never been shared with the committees that conduct oversight of the intelligence community.
A top House investigator asked: Peter Carr, a spokesman for the special counsel, said: Carr declined to comment on the extent to which Mueller has examined the dossier and its relationship, if any, to the counterintelligence investigation that Strzok launched during the height of the campaign season. Jake Gibson is a producer working at the Fox News Washington bureau who covers politics, law enforcement and intelligence issues.More...