In a letter released Sunday night, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence is requesting that President Donald Trump declassify roughly 19 pages of the fourth application of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant on Carter Page. The committee claims this effort is necessary to expose the irregularities in how the FBI and Department of Justice obtained the renewal warrants that lasted for nearly a year.
Sara Carter first reported on the urgency of the documents on Fox New’s Hannity more than a week ago, emphasizing that government officials believe the information contained in the documents will put to rest a number of questions about the FBI and DOJ’s handling of the Page application and raise new concerns that the agencies may have misled the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which authorized the warrants. DOJ Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein signed off on the final FISA warrant renewal to investigate Page, according to previous reporting and documents obtained by the committees conducting oversight of the matter.
Fox News investigative journalist, Catherine Herridge first published the letter Sunday night.
The letter to Trump (which was signed by all Republican members of the committee) is dated June 24 and states, “In the course of the Committee’s investigation, we have uncovered irregularities with the process by which DOJ and FBI obtained information and sought and renewed three times a warrant pursuant to FISA on U.S. citizen Carter Page. Because DOJ and FBI continue to obstruct the Committee’s investigation, it is time to put the facts in the public domain, consistent with the need to protect intelligence sources and methods.”
“After months of stonewalling, including defying a lawfully issued subpoena, DOJ and FBI finally agreed to permit select Committee members and staff to review the applications for the FISA warrant and renewal applications at DOJ. DOJ and FBI continue to obstruct the Committee’s further efforts to learn about the provenance and quality of the information used to obtain the FISA warrant and renewals on Mr. Page,” the letter states.
The committee members say the public has an inherent right to know the information contained in the FISA application, which was not disclosed in the 412 pages of highly redacted FISA documents released on Saturday. Saturday’s documents reveal that the bulk of the FISA application on Carter Page relied heavily on the unverified dossier put together by former British spy Christopher Steele.
“To enable the public to understand the DOJ’s and FBI’s basis for obtaining the FISA warrant and three subsequent renewals, we respectfully request that you declassify and release publicly, and in unredacted form, pages 10-12 and 17-34, along with all associated footnotes, of the third renewal of the FISA application on Mr. Page,” it states. “That renewal was led in June 2017 and signed by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. In addition, we enclose for your information a letter signed by all 13 Committee Republicans to the Presiding Judge of the FISC, asking her to conduct an investigation into DOJ’s conduct in obtaining the FISA warrant and three subsequent renewals.”
As of yet, there is no word from the White House if President Trump will authorize the release of the documents.