Politics & Policy

House GOP Leaders Call for Second Special Counsel

Kevin McCarthy and Paul Ryan on Capitol Hill (Reuters photo: Eric Thayer)

As more rank-and-file Republicans call for a second special counsel to investigate the FBI, some leaders are getting on board.

Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R., Calif.) said last weekend that he supported another special counsel to investigate the FBI’s possible bias against the Trump campaign in the Russia probe.

Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R., La.) followed suit.

“I agree with the many others who have called for the appointment of an additional special counsel,” the third ranking House Republican said in a statement Monday.

The first special counsel, Robert Mueller, is investigating the relationship between the Trump campaign and Russia. Mueller recently subpoenaed President Trump’s private businesses for any documents relating to Russia.

Members of the House and Senate sent two letters to Attorney General Jeff Sessions requesting a special counsel to counter Mueller’s.

The letters demand that the new special counsel look into potential bias at the FBI during the Russia investigation, especially the bureau’s possible abuse of FISA warrants against Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

Sessions has appointed the inspector general to look into potential wrongdoing but said earlier this month he is “seriously considering” the lawmakers’ request.

Two fired FBI officials, former director James Comey and deputy director Andrew McCabe, may have lied to investigators, McCarthy said. Their testimonies contradicted each other regarding whether they leaked sensitive information to the press.

“That is why we need a second special counsel,” McCarthy explained, adding that the Justice Department inspector general is not powerful enough to investigate it since he does not have subpoena power.

Congress’s top dogs, House speaker Paul Ryan and Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell, have not yet called for a second special counsel. Ryan has said he has faith in the Mueller investigation and that it must be allowed to run its course.

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