Affirms Congress’ independent investigative authority
WASHINGTON – Today, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) sent a letter to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) responding to the agency’s decision to withhold documents requested by the Committee on May 16, 2017.
Chairman Chaffetz requests memos, notes, summaries, and recordings to assist in the Committee’s investigation of the FBI’s independence, and which are outside the scope of the Special Counsel’s investigation. The documents are due June 8, 2017.
The letter states:
“The Committee has its own, Constitutionally-based prerogative to conduct investigations. But the Committee in no way wants to impede or interfere with the Special Counsel’s ability to conduct his investigation. In fact, the Committee’s investigation will complement the work of the Special Counsel. Whereas the Special Counsel is conducting a criminal or counterintelligence investigation that will occur largely behind closed doors, the Committee’s work will shed light on matters of high public interest, regardless of whether there is evidence of criminal conduct.
“The focus of the Committee’s investigation is the independence of the FBI, including conversations between the President and Comey and the process by which Comey was removed from his role as director. The records being withheld are central to those questions, even more so in light of Comey’s decision not to testify before the Committee at this time.”
“I am seeking to better understand Comey’s communications with the White House and Attorney General in such a way that does not implicate the Special Counsel’s work.”
Full text of Chairman Chaffetz letter can be viewed here.
Full text of FBI letter can be viewed here.