(National Sentinel)Â Illegal:Â The chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee said in a letterÂ to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein on Wednesday that former FBI Directory James Comey may have illegally leaked a classified memo to a friend.
In his letter, Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, demanded answers from Rosenstein regardingÂ the handling of memos that Comey wrote following his conversations with President Donald J. Trump,Â The Daily Caller reported.
The Judiciary chairman said that he and his staff have recently reviewed seven memos Comey wrote following his meetings with the president. Of those, four contained information that was classified as “Secret” or “Confidential.”
Grassley also noted that past media reports claimed that Comey gave at least four memos to his friend,Â Columbia law professor Daniel Richman.
During congressional testimony last year, Comey told a House panel he hoped that leaking the memos would lead to a special counsel appointment aimed at investigating Trump’s campaign. Shortly thereafter, Rosenstein appointed former FBI director and Comey friend Robert Mueller.
A report in July 2017 said that more than half of the memos Comey wrote following his Trump meetings contained classified information.
“This revelation raises the possibility that Comey broke his own agencyâ€™s rules and ignored the same security protocol that he publicly criticized Hillary Clinton for in the waning days of the 2016 presidential election,”Â TheÂ HillÂ reported.
The paper also noted that Comey testified the previous month before the House Intelligence Committee that he shared at least one of them with Richman. “He asked that lawyer to leak information from one memo to the news media in hopes of increasing pressure to get a special prosecutor named in the Russia case after Comey was fired as FBI director,”Â The Hill noted further.
â€œIf itâ€™s true that Professor Richman had four of the seven memos, then in light of the fact that four of the seven memos the Committee reviewed are classified, it would appear that at least one memo the former FBI director gave Professor Richman contained classified information,â€ Grassley writes.
HeÂ asserted in his letter that the Justice Department and FBI have so far failed to provide crucial details about the memos and how they were handled.
GrassleyÂ said during a recent review of the memos that was held in a secure facility, FBI personnel â€œrefusedâ€ to answer questions about the chain of custody of the memos, when they were deemed classified, and who made the classified determinations.
The Daily Caller reported further:
In his letter, Grassley askedÂ Rosenstein to clarify whether the DOJ or FBI have determined whether any of the memos that Comey sent to Richman contained classified information and which of the seven Comey memos had been provided to Richman.
Grassley is also inquiring when Richman received the memos and whether any had classification markings on them at the time they were exchanged.
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