Investigators from the House Intelligence Committee were finally able to get a peek at classified documents related to the controversial anti-Trump dossier behind closed doors at the Justice Department this week, Fox News reported. The committee’s chairman, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA), subpoenaed the FBI and the Justice Department over two months ago for documents relating to the Russia dossier.
Nunes told Fox News that in a bizarre turn of events, Democrats from the committee, who had argued all year that there was no need for a subpoena, were the first ones to show up at the DOJ on Tuesday to view the documents.
Republican investigators have been trying to find out how much, if at all, federal law enforcement officers relied on the “dodgy dossier” that was compiled by the opposition research firm Fusion GPS and funded by the Clinton campaign, the Democratic National Committee, and possibly Obama for America in 2016.
“I want to know whether the nation’s premier law enforcement agency relied on a document that looks like the National Enquirer prepared it,” Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), a member of the committee, put it last week.
According to Nunes, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the committee’s ranking member, attended the session at the Justice Department, along with two staffers for House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). Two other Democratic committee staffers also reportedly attended. Just two Republican committee staffers attended.
“When my investigators got there, there were four other staff from the other side of the aisle, including a member of Congress — the ranking member from our committee [Schiff],” Nunes told Fox News’ Sandra Smith, who was filling in for Martha MacCallum on The Story Wednesday evening.
“Here’s the bizarre part of it,” He added. “They didn’t support the subpoena. They said there was no reason to see this documentation — so I don’t know why they would run down there and be the first people to view the information.”
Asked what he thinks the significance of that is, Nunes answered: “It tells me that they’re very, very nervous about this dossier, who paid for it, and what we Republicans are going to find out about it. And I’m sure that they want to know about this so they can figure out what narrative they’re going to create to try to get us off the scent of what actually happened here.”
As far as the oft-repeated charge that Republicans began the work on the Steele dossier, Nunes said, “We’ve seen no evidence of that.” (The conservative website Washington Free Beacon did hire Fusion GPS to look into Trump’s financial dealings, but that was done before the research firm hired Steele and began looking into Team Trump’s Russia connections.)
Nunes said that the media, the Democrats, and even the executive branch have tried to obstruct his investigation into the genesis of the dossier.