Former Department of Homeland Security official Miles Taylor, who authored an op-ed vowing resistance to President Trump, appears to have been a key witness in the FBI’s investigation into Michael Flynn, two Senate-panel chairmen said Monday.
Republican Sens. Charles E. Grassley of Iowa and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin cited a newly-declassified May 2017 Justice Department document summarizing the FBI’s efforts in its Russian collusion probe.
The heavily redacted 11-page document names Mr. Taylor as a witness in the Flynn investigation, but doesn’t explain the FBI’s interest in him or his connection to Flynn, who briefly served as Mr. Trump’s national security adviser.
Former FBI Director James B. Comey wrote the document as briefing notes detailing the Flynn probe. Flynn pleaded guilty twice to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russia’s ambassador to the United States. He later recanted his guilty plea and professed his innocence.
“Based on Miles Taylor interview + open source reporting, considering an interview of former CIA Director James Woolsey,” the document states.
The document also indicates that Flynn’s lobbying organization, the Flynn Intel Group, met twice with Mr. Taylor in October 2016, but offers little information about the meeting.
“Witness interview of Miles Taylor, mentioned in the [Foreign Agents Registration Act] documents, indicated Flynn Intel Group’s involvement with a late 2016 Turkey-related briefing to the now-National Security Adviser to the Vice President,” the document says.
Neither Mr. Taylor nor the Justice Department responded to requests for comment.
Mr. Grassley, who heads the Senate Finance Committee, and Mr. Johnson, who leads the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, said the Justice Department needs to explain Mr. Taylor’s possible role in the Flynn probe.
They have asked Attorney General William P. Barr to give them a briefing and to declassify further the document’s redacted portions. The senators have also asked for all records related to the Taylor interview.
“This heavily-redacted document suggests that the FBI spoke directly to Taylor and it also provides additional information relating to Crossfire Hurricane,” they wrote in a letter to Mr. Barr.
Mr. Taylor, now a paid CNN contributor, admitted last month that he was the disgruntled staffer who penned the September 2018 op-ed in The New York Times assailing Mr. Trump. He followed up the op-ed with a June 2019 anonymous book, “A Warning.”
The Trump administration has dismissed Mr. Taylor as a “low-level” aide and “a liar and coward.”