Lawmakers seek new special counsel to probe DOJ ‘bias’


Associated Press

WASHINGTON

Two Republican House committee chairmen are calling for a new special counsel to take a broad look at whether Justice Department or FBI employees were biased as they began investigating President Donald Trump’s ties to Russia in 2016 and whether there were surveillance abuses as part of that probe.

Reps. Robert Goodlatte of Virginia and Trey Gowdy of South Carolina wrote Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein on Tuesday to ask for the new special counsel, whose work would be separate from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Trump and Russia.

Republicans have alleged surveillance abuses in the department, releasing a declassified memo last month that detailed the use of political opposition research to obtain a warrant to monitor a former adviser to Trump’s campaign. Democrats countered with their own memo that said the FBI only “made narrow use” of that research paid for by Democrats.

Goodlatte is chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, and Gowdy is chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. Gowdy is also on the Judiciary panel.

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