Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Tuesday the inspector general of the Department of Justice will probe allegations of government surveillance abuse, in light of the memos released on Capitol Hill about FBI and DOJ efforts to obtain FISA warrants to surveil a Trump campaign adviser.
“We believe the Department of Justice must adhere to the high standards in the FISA court,” Sessions said during a news conference Tuesday. “Yes it will be investigated. And I think that's just the appropriate thing the inspector general will take that as one of the matters he'll deal with.”
Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee released a memo in February detailing the DOJ and FBI’s surveillance of Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, saying an infamous, unverified dossier funded by Democrats "formed an essential part" of the application to spy on him. Democrats released a rebuttal memo on Sunday.
The White House responded to the GOP memo by saying it “raises serious concerns about the integrity of decisions made at the highest levels of the Department of Justice and the FBI to use the government’s most intrusive surveillance tools against American citizens.”
In an earlier interview on Fox News’ "Sunday Morning Futures," Sessions told host Maria Bartiromo that there would be an investigation into how the FBI used the dossier to secure a wiretap.
“Let me tell you, every FISA warrant based on facts submitted to that court have to be accurate,” he said. “That will be investigated and looked at, and we are not going to participate at the Department of Justice in providing anything less than the proper disclosure to the court before they issue a FISA warrant.”
The involvement of the inspector general is significant.
Over the last year, Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz has been conducting a review of the FBI and DOJ’s actions related to the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while she was secretary of state. A final report on the investigation is expected within several months.