House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes and House Oversight Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy will be given classified Mueller Probe investigation details, The Hill reported today. The two will receive a classified briefing on Thursday.
Related to documents pertaining to Robert Mueller’s investigation of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and Russian interference in the 2016 election, the briefing follows a meeting at the White House between Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and his deputy and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly.
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes has requested and filed a subpoena for Russia probe-related classified documents.
According to the Washington Post, Nunes is clashing with the Justice Department which has refused to comply with his requests, claiming information being sought by Mr. Nunes could risk the life of a top secret intelligence source.
The White House sided with the department’s decision to refuse the request, which prompted Nunes to publicly express his frustrations. The House Intelligence Committee chairman said he may try to hold Attorney General Jeff Sessions in contempt for refusing to comply.
Furthermore, Nunes asserted that his classified-document request and subpoena did not refer to an individual.
In a statement supplied to the Post, Nunes said the following:
“Congress has a right and a duty to get this information and we will succeed in getting this information, regardless of whatever fantastic stories the DOJ and FBI spin to the Post.”
Several administration officials told the Washington Post that they fear President Trump may change his mind and support Nunes.
Intelligence officials who spoke to the Post fear that the House Intelligence Committee chairman’s request might be over the line, compromising methods and sources of American intelligence agencies.
The information Nunes seeks, intelligence officials said, could expose the source and even damage relationships with partner countries and foreign intelligence agencies.
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who is in charge of overseeing the Mueller investigation, has, according to The Hill, been criticized by lawmakers of being slow to fulfill document requests.
Rosenstein has been defending the Justice Department and resisting pressure from the GOP fiercely. He has dismissed impeachment threats, although conservative representatives have drafted eight articles of impeachment against him.
“There have been people who have been making threats privately and publicly against me for quite some time, and I think they should understand by now the Department of Justice is not going to be extorted,” Rosenstein told The Hill.
According to the same outlet, Rosenstein, who is a career Justice Department official, has been praised for his work and is widely respected in legal circles. Rosenstein was in charge of the U.S. attorney’s office in Maryland for 12 years.