House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes (R-CA) went after Jeff Sessions in a letter threatening to subject the attorney general to a public hearing if he won’t hand over the intelligence surrounding the Russian dossier.
CNN obtained the letter, which details Nunes’s threats to subject Sessions and FBI Director Christopher Wray into a public hearing. He also threatened to hold the two in contempt of Congress if the dossier intelligence isn’t turned over.
The explosive 35-page dossier linked Donald Trump to Russian efforts to interfere with the election, and was published by the media shortly before his inauguration.
Nunes had his committee issue subpoenas in August specifically asking whether the FBI or Justice Department compiled any investigation or research into the dossier. He also asked for information on whether the dossier was used as a justification for any surveillance under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).
Nunes intends to extend his deadline to Sept. 14 but refused to wait around any longer.
“If all responsive documents are not produced by the revised deadline, the Attorney General and Director of the FBI shall appear before the committee at 9 a.m. on September 14, 2017 in room HVC-210 of the US Capitol during an open hearing, to explain under oath DOJ’s and FBI’s unwillingness or inability to comply in full with the subpoenas issued on August 24,” Nunes threatened in the letter.
He further demands that if the two refuse to turn over documents he’ll hold them in contempt, which could mean a up to a year in prison.
“We’ve got to run this thing to ground,” said Rep. Michael Conaway (R-TX), the GOP leader of the House Russia investigation.
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), who heads the Democratic side of the committee, objected to the subpoenas, saying he thinks they are being used by Nunes to “undermine” claims about the Trump campaign and Russia.
Conway isn’t sure what will happen if both the FBI and Justice Department refuse to hand over information and enforcement of contempt will be left to House Speaker Paul Ryan.
Nunes refused to comment.