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Sen. Lindsey Graham: FISA Memo Doesn't Affect Russia Probe

Image: Sen. Lindsey Graham: FISA Memo Doesn't Affect Russia Probe
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By    |   Friday, 02 February 2018 10:52 PM

Sen. Lindsey Graham said Friday that the House Intelligence Committee's memo alleging FBI surveillance abuses does not impede the Russia investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller.

"Nothing in the memo released today undercuts Mr. Mueller's investigation," the South Carolina Republican said in a statement.

Graham said he agreed with House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wisconsin that the document "should not be construed as an attack on the FBI or [Department of Justice] as institutions."

He added that the eventual release of the Democratic response would "likely provide further context" — and he called for another special counsel to probe agency abuses regarding the Hillary Clinton email investigation.

"We should never lose sight of the fact the FBI is made up of hard-working Americans … and the Department of Justice is made up of dedicated public servants," he said.

"If some bad elements within those agencies have acted inappropriately, they will be held to account."

Graham was among many Republicans Friday who expressed a diversity of views on the release of the memo by Republicans on the Intelligence Committee, which was overseen by Chairman Devin Nunes of California.

President Donald Trump had approved the document's declassification.

The memo alleged that the warrant the FBI obtained from the court established under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to investigate former Trump campaign aide Carter Page was based on an unsubstantiated dossier of negative information on the Republican presidential candidate.

The dossier was paid, in part, by the campaign of Democrat Hillary Clinton — and this information was never disclosed in any FISA application, according to the memo.

President Trump slammed the memo, telling reporters in the Oval Office that "I think it's terrible.

"It's a disgrace what's going on in this country. I think it's a disgrace."

While praising the document's release, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul called on Congress to "take immediate action to help prevent such behavior in the future.

"It is imperative it start by listening to Americans who have expressed outrage over its disregard for the Fourth Amendment and re-examining the powers it reauthorized right before we learned of the memo.

"Continuing to ignore the Constitution will only guarantee that others fall victim to government abusing its domestic surveillance powers."

Last month, Congress reauthorized Section 702 of the FISA law, which allows spy agencies to monitor the electronic communications of foreigners located outside the U.S. without a warrant.

Former 2016 presidential candidate John Kasich said Friday that oversight of the FBI and Justice Department "has to be done in a bipartisan manner — not for partisan reasons or political gain.

"The manner in which this was done was wrong and does a disservice to our country.

"Make no mistake, Russia is not an ally," the Ohio governor added. "They are not our friends — and they shouldn't be treated as such.

"The independent investigation into Russia's meddling in our election must continue unimpeded by outside forces from either Congress or the president."

Idaho Rep. Raúl Labrador said the committee's document showed "real collusion between Democratic operatives and key officials at the FBI and DOJ to spy on the Trump campaign and interfere in the 2016 election.

"The politicization of our intelligence and law-enforcement agencies should concern every American.

"Congress should continue to investigate this matter and release all the evidence supporting the memo's allegations," he added. "The document shows the dangers of allowing secret courts under our constitutional form of government."

Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar said the document provided "not just evidence of incompetence but clear and convincing evidence of treason."

He said he would ask Attorney General Jeff Sessions to bring criminal charges against top FBI officials linked to the alleged abuse — including former Director James Comey and his former No. 2, Andrew McCabe, who resigned Monday — because they are "traitors to our nation."

Other Republicans took to Twitter:

 
 

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Sen. Lindsey Graham said Friday that the House Intelligence Committee's memo alleging FBI surveillance abuses does not impede the Russia investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller.
lindsey graham, fisa memo, russia probe
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2018-52-02
Friday, 02 February 2018 10:52 PM
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