(NationalSentinel) Did the deep state go too far in leaking too much sensitive classified information regarding President Donald J. Trump’s administration to the press? Was the political assassination of Trump’s national security advisor, Mike Flynn, a step too far? A growing number of congressionalÂ Republicans think so, which is why theyÂ are backing the president’s demand to knowÂ whoÂ in the intelligence community is leaking, and on behalf of whom.
As reported by theÂ Washington Examiner, Republicans in the HouseÂ and Senate are siding with the president in demanding to know where the torrent of leaksÂ that have flowed out of the federal government since Trump took office are coming from:
Leaks that exposed former national security adviser Mike Flynn’s phone call to the Russian ambassador in December, as well as conversations between Trump and foreign leaders, have frustrated Trump in his first few weeks in office. When Democrats pounced and said further investigations into the White House are warranted, Trump said the “real” issue is the leaks themselves.
“The real story here is why there are so many illegal leaks coming out of Washington,” Trump tweeted.
Republicans in Congress made it clear they are ready to oblige. House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., is drafting a letter to theÂ FBIÂ that will ask the bureau investigate the leaks.
That includes an examination of who obtained and leaked a private telephone conversation between Flynn and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak that led to Flynn’s ousting late Monday.
“The chairman is drafting a letter to [FBIÂ director James Comey] asking the FBI to look into, and report to the House Intelligence Committee on, the long series of purported leaks of classified information we’ve seen for the last several months,” a GOP aide said told theÂ Washington Examiner.
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While U.S. spy agencies routinely monitor phone calls and electronic traffic into and out of the embassies of foreign governments (they monitorÂ ours, too), it is a violation of U.S. statutory law to monitor the phone calls of American citizens (Flynn), then identify andÂ leak their identities to media and other parties not authorized to receive such intelligence.
“I expect for theÂ FBIÂ to tell me what’s going on and hopefully they have a good answer,” Nunes said Tuesday in response to those press accounts.
Nunes said recording and transcribing calls by Flynn “would be totally unprecedented,” because Flynn is an American.
“The big problem I see here is you have an American citizen who has had his phone call recorded and leaked,” Nunes said.
TheÂ Washington Examiner noted further:
The leaked information appeared aimed at embarrassing Trump and called into question his ability to establish relationships with important foreign allies. Republicans said they fear it will undermine Trump’s presidency.
“I’m highly concerned about it,” Senate Homeland Security Committee Chairman Ron Johnson, R-Wis., told theÂ Washington Examiner. “The administration has to have the loyalty of its agencies and it’s departments and it looks like this one doesn’t have it.”
Johnson said he wants to know who leaked Flynn’s phone conversations.
“I certainly want to know what’s happening here,” Johnson said. “I believe there is information out in the public domain that never should have been out in the public domain.
Other Republicans are equally concerned. One, Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., a top Republican on the Homeland Security Committee, said he was far less concerned about what Democrats were seeking - what Trump knew, and when, for instance - that he is the actual leaking.
“If you’ve got those kinds of people in your midst when you are trying to conduct a top-secret operation and you’ve got people leaking out to the press for politically motivated purposes, that’s a much greater danger than anything I hear the Democrats charging,” King said. “Let’s find out where the leaks are. They need to be rooted out.”