Devin Nunes and Trey Gowdy did not take up an invitation to meet with the Justice Department last week, citing leaks within the agency.
Nunes, the House Intelligence Committee chairman and Gowdy, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, reportedly ignored the invitation extended to them for a Friday morning briefing with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and FBI Director Chris Wray, among others.
Fox News producer, Jake Gibson, tweeted last week that a DOJ official revealed Nunes and Gowdy had not responded to the invitation despite their demands for pertinent documents from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
Senior DOJ Official:
Earlier in the week (Tuesday), we offered Chairmen Nunes and Gowdy a meeting for Friday morning with the Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, FBI Director Chris Wray, and senior Intelligence Community staff. They have not responded to our invite. @FoxNews
— Jake Gibson (@JakeBGibson) May 17, 2018
Nunes was clear that he would not be playing games with the DOJ.
“We’re not going to go to another meeting where we don’t get documents, and then the meeting leaks out,” the California Republican said during an interview on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures” with Maria Bartiromo.
“This should make people very suspicious – they were trying to get Mr. Gowdy and I to go on Friday to the Justice Department for supposedly another briefing,” he added, pointing out that had they gone to the meeting, the “mother of all leaks” that came out later Friday evening would have been blamed on them.
Nunes, who has repeatedly been blamed by Democrats for being the leaker, was referring to reports by the New York Times and the Washington Post, describing the informant as someone who supposedly had contacts with members of President Trump’s campaign.
According to the Washington Examiner:
In recent weeks, Nunes subpoenaed the Justice Department for documents concerning an American who was a confidential intelligence source for Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation. The subpoena came after the agency did not reply to a letter asking for details on Mueller’s probe. But the DOJ, backed by the White House, did not provide the documents, informing Nunes earlier this month that providing the information would threaten the life of the source and jeopardize national security. Instead he got a briefing with government officials, along with Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., the chairman of the House Oversight Committee.
“We had what I thought was a productive meeting,” Nunes explained to Bartiromo. “After that meeting, they’ve done nothing but leak and leak and leak.”
On Sunday, Trump demanded in a tweet that the DOJ investigate whether there was any politically motivated surveilling of his campaign.
“I hereby demand, and will do so officially tomorrow, that the Department of Justice look into whether or not the FBI/DOJ infiltrated or surveilled the Trump Campaign for Political Purposes – and if any such demands or requests were made by people within the Obama Administration!” Trump tweeted.
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein responded by asking for a review by the Justice Department’s inspector general.