Republican Rep. Trey Gowdy of South Carolina calls for a special counsel to investigate the FBI’s use of opposition research during the FISA warrant process.
The investigation stems from information that was obtained by the FBI during their search for Russian interference throughout the 2016 presidential election.
The FBI allegedly relied on information from a dossier that was written by a former British spy, Christopher Steele, and paid for by Democratic groups. The FBI sought warrants to monitor Carter Page, a former foreign policy advisor of the Trump campaign.
Gowdy explains that the FBI cannot investigate itself and a special counsel investigation needs to take place to examine the questionable acts of the FBI.
“The Department of Justice has a conflict, so they should not conduct this investigation,” Gowdy said Wednesday in an interview with Fox News. “Michael Horowitz, the inspector general, doesn’t have access to non-DOJ employees or those who have left the department or the FBI, so he can’t do it. It needs to be done. It needs to be done by somebody your viewers have confidence in. And I’ve been reluctant in the past to call for special counsel, but this is a unique fact pattern and I think a special counsel is the only entity that can do this effectively.”
Gowdy expresses his confusion on the matter, saying he doesn’t know “why the bureau would use opposition research in a court filing if they didn’t bother to vet it or investigate it. You can be a fan of the FBI and still be troubled by what they’ve done and want to understand better how and why it happened.”
He also conveys his confidence in the FISA court despite the allegations of corruption.
“We get rid of the bad actors, but we don’t throw out the process,” Gowdy continues. “The process has worked. This is the first conversation you and I have ever had — this fact pattern about FISA, even though it’s been around two decades. So, it’s not the process, it’s the actors who were involved in 2016. And I think we’ve got to be mindful to identify the folks who did not do their jobs properly, but don’t throw out the entire process because we have a handful of bad actors.”