WASHINGTON DC (April 17, 2020) — Senators Charles "Chuck" Grassley (R-IA), chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, and Ron Johnson (R-WI), chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, sent a letter Thursday to Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Director Christopher Wray requesting all records from the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane team.
“On January 28, 2020, we wrote to Attorney General Barr and requested the declassification of four footnotes in the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) report about the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Crossfire Hurricane investigation. Since then, we received declassified versions of those and other footnotes, and they reveal disturbing facts about the FBI’s investigation: The Crossfire Hurricane team’s investigative file included at least two intelligence reports stating that key parts of the reporting from Christopher Steele — reporting that “played a central and essential role” in the decision to request FISA orders — were part of a Russian disinformation campaign,” the senators wrote.
“The information in the now-declassified footnotes also directly contradicts statements provided by FBI officials in the OIG report. … We are deeply troubled by the Crossfire Hurricane team’s awareness of and apparent indifference to Russian disinformation, as well as by the grossly-inaccurate statements by the FBI official in charge of the investigation and its supervisory intelligence analyst.
“These recently-declassified footnotes raise another issue of significant concern: what other parts of the FBI’s investigation were infected by Russian disinformation? … The FBI knew that Russian intelligence was targeting Christopher Steele’s company, that Steele relied on sources affiliated with Russian intelligence, and at least two of Steele’s reports were described as the product of a Russian disinformation campaign. Because these facts show the intention, means, and ability to plant Russian disinformation in Steele’s reporting, they suggest that the prevalence of such disinformation in the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane investigation may have been widespread.”
Full text of the letter is below, and it can also be viewed here.