DOJ offers new briefing as lawmakers dispute Trump spy claim

  • DOJ offers new briefing as lawmakers dispute Trump spy claim

DOJ offers new briefing as lawmakers dispute Trump spy claim

Gowdy, from SC, and the House Oversight Committee chairman, said last month's briefing persuaded him the FBI's actions were appropriate.

Gowdy and Ryan were among a small group of lawmakers who were briefed last month in a classified setting on the FBI's use of the information after pressure from the White House to disclose more information to Congress.

Gaetz is one of a dozen or so House Republicans pushing for a second special counsel to investigate the FBI and Justice Department's handling of its probe into Trump's campaign and Russian Federation. "We still have someone to answer questions".

It wouldn't be the first time Ryan has broken with Mr. Trump since announcing he won't run for reelection.

Speaking on Carlson's primetime show Wednesday night, Swalwell denied that the FBI's alleged informant - veteran spy and academic Stefan Halper - actually spied on the Trump campaign, arguing that "spying is what you do against an enemy".

No court has ruled on whether a president can pardon himself, though the Department of Justice wrote in a 1974 opinion, days before former President Richard Nixon resigned in disgrace, that the president "cannot pardon himself".

The briefing will be for the Gang of Eight - the senior Democrat and Republican in the Senate and House, as well as the senior members of each party on their respective intelligence committees.

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., who has floated the possibility of impeaching Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who oversees Mueller's probe, declined to comment on Ryan's take until after he had spoken directly with the speaker. President Donald Trump has accused the Federal Bureau of Investigation of "spying" on his campaign.

Democrats made similar comments immediately after the briefing. That echoed a House intelligence committee report released earlier this year.

Initially, the Justice Department resisted providing Congress with the materials, fearing the source's life would be placed at risk, but it later made a decision to provide members with classified briefings to answer questions.

"Normally I don't like to comment on classified briefings", Ryan said. "It would have been helpful if we got this information earlier". Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., originally requested documents on the informant in April. But they eventually relented after pressure from Trump, Nunes and Ryan. "As long as we have a special counsel who will not even confess as to his limits, then this is going to continue to be a problem". But it was Ryan who took the brunt of the blowback on conservative media, particularly from the GOP faction on Capitol Hill that has been leading the charge against the FBI and Justice Department's handling of the Russian Federation investigation.

"I think when the president finds out what happened, he is going to be not just fine, he is going to be glad that we have an Federal Bureau of Investigation that took seriously what they heard", Gowdy said.