The Senate Homeland Security Committee authorized committee chairman Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) to subpoena 40 people, including many top Obama administration officials, in connection with a Senate probe into the Russian collusion investigation into the Trump campaign.
The committee voted along party lines eight to six on Wednesday to authorize subpoenas for dozens of Obama administration officials as Johnson investigates the origin of Crossfire Hurricane, the FBI investigation into the 2016 Trump campaign. The committee had approved subpoenas for 33 people during a July meeting, but Democrats objected on procedural grounds and forced a new vote on Wednesday that included subpoenas for seven more people, according to The Daily Caller News Foundation.
The new additions under Johnson’s subpoena power include Cambridge professor Stefan Halper, who served as an informant to the FBI during Crossfire Hurricane, as well as former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe and Justice Department official Bruce Ohr.
“We are here today … to overcome a ridiculous assertion by the ranking member regarding committee subpoena rules and, while we’re at it, to vote on subpoena authority for seven additional individuals based on new information,” Johnson said at the hearing, according to The Washington Examiner. “Regarding the committee subpoena rules, Sen. [Gary] Peters has raised a procedural objection based on an absurd interpretation of committee rules. According to Sen. Peters, when the committee authorized deposition subpoenas on June 4, that vote did not include the authority to actually schedule any depositions.”
Peters, the ranking member on the committee, and other Democrats have consistently opposed the probe into the origins of Crossfire Hurricane, alleging that the investigation is politically motivated.
“I’m disappointed that our committee is once again meeting to discuss the authorization of subpoenas instead — let me say that again — instead of the serious challenges facing Americans,” Peters said. “Today, we’re voting on an unprecedented 40 subpoenas to further the chairman’s investigations into Crossfire Hurricane and the unmasking of Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn’s name.”
Rep. Doug Collins, (R-GA) appeared on Fox Business on Thursday morning with host Maria Bartiromo and commended the Senate for approving the dozens of subpoenas against Obama administration officials tied in with Crossfire Hurricane.
“I’m glad to finally see the Senate is issuing these subpoenas. I’m glad to finally see these hearings are taking place. You know, I’ll be honest, I would’ve loved to have seen them earlier because we knew this stuff was coming out, and now it’s taken to September to get them,” Collins said. “But now we have them, let’s get the truth to the American people because you’re right. Every time we peel back the onion, every time I’ve been on your show and many other shows and we’ve talked about it and the left and the mainstream media would make fun of us saying, ‘You’re just on a wild goose chase trying to protect the president.’”
“Everything we’ve talked about turned out to be true. So it’s time for them now, it is time for the Senate who has that subpoena power to get them under oath, to get them in here,” Collins continued, referring to officials that Johnson now has the authority to subpoena. “It’s time to hold them accountable and Attorney General [William] Barr needs to do that.”
He also says he'll call on Barr to "use every forensic tool" DOJ has to get at ex-Mueller team phones if needed pic.twitter.com/FuWbq3AIse
— Daniel Chaitin (@danielchaitin7) September 17, 2020