Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham said Monday that he will probe alleged abuses of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) at the start of the Russia investigation, while calling on Attorney General Bill Barr to appoint a new special counsel to investigate the “other side of the story.”
Graham, R-S.C., made the comments during a press conference on Capitol Hill following the release of the findings in the Robert Mueller investigation, which did not uncover evidence of a Trump-Russia conspiracy in 2016. Graham and other Trump allies cited the findings to renew scrutiny of the probe’s origins at the FBI. The chairman said he’ll look into any alleged misconduct related to the Russia investigation on the part of the Justice Department, the FBI and the Democrats, but added that due to “the emotional nature of this” he believes a new appointment is necessary.
“I’d like to find somebody, like a Mr. Mueller, that can look into what happened with the FISA warrants, the counterintelligence investigation. Am I right to be concerned? It seems pretty bad on its face—but there are some people that are never going to accept the Mueller report, but by any reasonable standard, Mueller thoroughly investigated the Trump campaign. You cannot say that about the other side of the story,” Graham told reporters Monday.
“I hope Mr. Barr will appoint somebody outside the current system to look into these allegations, somebody we all trust, and let them do what Mueller did,” he continued, adding that he has been calling for the appointment of a second special counsel since 2017 to investigate “whether or not a counterintelligence investigation was opened as a back door to spy on the Trump campaign.”
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