Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Lindsey Graham said on Sunday that his panel’s investigation into the FBI’s abuse of the FISA court to spy on the 2016 Trump campaign will begin with a mystery source for the infamous “Steele dossier.”
In an appearance on Fox Business Network’s “Sunday Morning Futures” with Maria Bartiromo, Graham said he will first interview four FBI and Justice Department officials who themselves interviewed the primary source for the dossier, which was complied by former British spy Christopher Steele, in January 2017.
“The first thing I want to do is call the people who heard from Russian sub-source that this dossier is a bunch of bar talk and hearsay,” Graham said, in reference to an individual identified in the Justice Department inspector general’s report only as “Primary Sub-Source.”
The IG report noted that the person was Steele’s only source who made it into the dossier, which was then used by the FBI to obtain surveillance warrants on a member of the 2016 Trump campaign, Carter Page.
The warrants were obtained from the FISA court, which meets in secret.
“The source’s statements to the FBI and DOJ officials were explosive, according to the inspector general’s report. It said Steele’s source disputed much of what was attributed to him in the dossier, which was funded by the DNC and Clinton campaign,” The Daily Caller reported Monday.
“The Primary Sub-source made statements during his/her January 2017 FBI interview that were inconsistent with multiple sections of the Steele reports, including some that were relied upon in the FISA applications,” the report stated.
Graham said he also wants to know whether former FBI Director James Comey and former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe were ever told about the Steele source’s contradictory statements about the dossier.
“I want to find out when did Comey and McCabe understand it was not reliable and start from there,” Graham said.
The South Carolina Republican sent a letter to Attorney General William Barr Feb. 14 asking that he make 17 current Justice Department and FBI employees identified in the inspector general’s report available for closed-door depositions.