GOP Sens. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) released a statement demanding the inspector general of the intelligence community investigate leaks regarding the Russia probe and the Ukraine call.
Johnson and Grassley sent a letter to the ICIG, Michael Atkinson, calling for more transparency about actions taken to investigate leaks of classified or sensitive information. They sent a letter in early May calling on the ICIG to investigate leaks from the Russia probe. Now, the senators have issued a follow-up letter about the Ukraine call.
“The IC complaint’s material and material relating to President Trump’s call with Ukraine were also leaked, and those leaks included classified information,” the senators wrote. “News reports used anonymous sources to report on information relating to the complaint and phone call that were classified at the time.”
According to Grassley and Johnson, the ICIG has neither confirmed nor denied the existence of an investigation into the leaks. They believe the IC should be just as transparent as the White House in releasing information regarding the whistleblower complaint.
There is no question that someone in, or close to, the intelligence community leaked classified information. Over the past two years there have been numerous leaks from government agencies, but without an investigation or accountability there seems to be no stopping the leaks.
The New York Times reported Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) learned about the whistleblower complaint before it was filed. That information was supposed to be classified.
In Johnson and Grassley’s letter addressed to Atkinson, the senators said they believe the leaks — regardless of whether they pertain to Russia or Ukraine — are a partisan interest game that inevitably impedes the president from executing his duties. Simultaneously these leaks undermine national security, the integrity of the federal administration, law enforcement, and counterintelligence investigations.
Johnson and Grassley request that Atkinson answer the following questions:
- Is the ICIG investigating the classified leaks relating to the IC complaint and Ukraine call? If not, why not?
- How many people within the ICIG office had access to the complaint and call transcript before they were made public?
The senators requested this information be handed to their respective committees by October 10.