Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham on Tuesday demanded FBI Director Christopher A. Wray address accusations that bureau officials lied to a Senate panel in 2018 about a notorious, unverified anti-Trump dossier.
Over the weekend, Mr. Graham, South Carolina Republican, released a document declassified by Attorney General William Barr detailing a 2018 briefing the FBI provided to the Senate Intelligence Committee. The document suggested that as early as December 2016, the FBI had serious doubts about the reliability of the dossier, compiled by British ex-spy Christopher Steele.
Officials at the CIA had even grown concerned that the FBI had overhyped the Steele dossier, according to additional released documents.
Mr. Graham said the document shows that the FBI misled the intelligence panel about the dossier’s reliability, including concerns about the truthfulness of a sub-source who provided information to Mr. Steele.
“What is particularly troubling about this briefing is that the outline of the briefing indicates that at least three material misrepresentations regarding in the Primary Sub-source and what the told the FBI about the Steele dossier in 2017 were made to the committee,” Mr. Graham said in a statement.
Mr. Graham, who is not a member of the committee and did not attend the 2018 briefing, sent a letter to Mr. Wray seeking answers. A Trump appointee, Mr. Wray was running the FBI in 2018 when the briefing took place.
Mr. Graham asked the FBI director to name the officials who drafted the outline of the committee briefing and turn over documents used to prepare it.
He also wants to know who attended the briefing and received a copy of any documents used to brief lawmakers in the House and Senate about the Steele dossier and the surveillance warrants for former Trump campaign aide Carter Page.
Mr. Graham’s letter is a request, not a subpoena, meaning the FBI is not legally required to comply. But earlier this week, Mr. Wray was subpoenaed by Sen. Ron Johnson, Wisconsin Republican and chairman of the Homeland Security Committee.
The subpoena demanded all material related to the Crossfire Hurricane, the FBI’s code name for its investigation into accusations of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian officials ahead of the 2016 election. The probe morphed into former special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.
“The FBI has received Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Graham’s letter. We will continue to work in coordination with the Department of Justice to address the Committee’s requests,” the bureau said in a statement to The Washington Times.