Republican lawmakers on Wednesday sent a slew of criminal referrals to Attorney General Jeff Sessions for a number of Obama administration officials and senior FBI employees for violations of the law in connection to the Clinton email and Trump-Russia investigations.
Specifically, they sent criminal referrals to Sessions for: former FBI Director James Comey, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former Attorney General Loretta Lynch, former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, as well as FBI Special Agent Peter Strzok and his lover, FBI lawyer Lisa Page, for separate violations.
The criminal referrals, first reported by investigative journalist Sara Carter, were made by Rep. Ron Desantis (R-FL), a senior member of the House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform Committees who is leaving the House to run for Florida governor, and nine other colleagues.
Signatories included: GOP Reps. Andy Biggs (AZ), Dave Brat (VA), Jeff Duncan (SC), Matt Gaetz (FL), Paul A. Gosar (AZ), Andy Harris (MD), Jody Hice (GA), Todd Rokita (IN), Claudia Tenney (NY), and Ted Yoho (FL).
“Because we believe that those in positions of high authority should be treated the same as every other American, we want to be sure that the potential violations of law outlined below are vetted appropriately,” said the letter.
They said Comey potentially broke the law when he chose not to seek charges against Clinton, for leaking classified memos of his conversations to President Trump to his friend Daniel Richman to give to the press, and for lying to lawmakers.
They said Clinton potentially broke the law when disguising payments to Fusion GPS, the firm that produced the Trump dossier, despite mandatory disclosures to the Federal Election Commission.
Lynch, they said, potentially broke the law when she threatened a former FBI informant, William Douglas Campbell, who had tried to come forward in 2016 with information related to the Uranium One deal that was approved in 2010.
McCabe potentially broke the law when he lied to investigators four times when questioned about a leak that he had arranged, they said.
Strzok and Page potentially violated the law by interfering in the investigation of Clinton’s private email server, they said. The letter cites a Wall Street Journal report that said their text messages to one another revealed FBI officials tried to eliminate evidence that Clinton had compromised high-level communications with then-President Obama.
“The report provides the following alarming specifics, among others: ‘Mr. Strzok texts Ms. Page to tell her that, in fact, senior officials had decided to water down the reference to President Obama to ‘another senior government official,” the criminal referral said.
Finally, the lawmakers referred all Justice Department and FBI personnel, including Comey, McCabe, former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates, and former Acting Deputy Attorney General Dana Boente, for potentially breaking the law by using unverified and/or false information to obtain a surveillance warrant on former Trump campaign volunteer Carter Page.
Carter also reported that other recent documents obtained by congressional investigators suggest possible coordination by the Obama White House, the CIA, and the FBI in investigating the Trump campaign.
“According to those documents, the senior Obama officials used unsubstantiated evidence to launch allegations in the media that the Trump campaign was colluding with Russia during the run-up to the 2016 presidential election,” Carter reported.
CIA Director John Brennan had briefed Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) in August 2016, prompting Reid to send a letter to then-FBI Director James Comey asking him to investigate allegations of collusion. Reid then reportedly stayed in close touch with Comey.