Back when the first memo sponsored by Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee was being written, Chairman Devin Nunes promised that the investigation of how the dossier influenced the ability of the government to obtain a FISA warrant on Carter Page was only the starting point.
“This completes just the FISA abuse portion of our investigation,” Nunes told Fox News’ Bret Baier, using an acronym for the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. “We are in the middle of what I call ‘Phase Two’ of our investigation, which involves other departments, specifically the State Department and some of the involvement that they had in this.”
“We continue to work towards finding answers and asking the right questions to try to get to the bottom of what exactly the State Department was up to in terms of this Russian investigation,” said Nunes.
Now we are able to see the contours of the next phase. It specifically aims at how the Obama administration reacted to the Trump dossier.
House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes has sent a series of questions about the Trump dossier to a number of current and former government officials. The committee did not specify to whom Nunes sent the questions, but a spokesman said the letter has gone to 11 recipients.
These are the questions:
1. When and how did you first become aware of any of the information contained in the Steele dossier?
2. In what form(s) was the information in the Steele dossier presented to you? By whom? (Please describe each instance)
3. Who did you share this information with? When? In what form? (Please describe each instance)
4. What officials actions did you take as a result of receiving the information contained in the Steele dossier?
5. Did you convene any meetings with the intelligence community and/or law enforcement communities as a result of the information contained in the Steele dossier?
6. When did you first learn or come to believe that the Steele dossier was funded by a Democrat-aligned entity?
7. When did you first learn or come to believe that the Steele dossier was funded by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and/or Hillary for America (Clinton campaign)?
8. When did you first become aware that the Steele dossier was used to obtain a FISA order on Carter Page?
9. Was President Obama briefed on any information contained in the dossier prior to January 5, 2017?
10. Did you discuss the information contained in the Steele dossier with any reporters or other representatives of the media? If so, who and when?
There is suspicion that former State Department officials Victoria Nuland (who also appeared on Chuck Grassley’s list of potential spreaders of the dossier) and Jonathan Winer, who wrote an op-ed a couple of weeks ago detailing his involvment with the dossier, are on the list. In addition, Fox News says:
Fox News understands the questionnaire went out to about two dozen current and former officials.
Among them were Comey, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and former CIA Director John Brennan, who testified in May 2017 that the Trump dossier was virtually unknown to him.
And the questions were accompanied by a promise of a subpoena if answers were not forthcoming.