Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa0 is asking even more questions in the wake of recent media reports that the Department of Justice has impeded FBI investigations into Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server and possible corruption at the Clinton Foundation.
In a new letter to FBI Director James Comey, Grassley is asking the FBI to explain whether the review of the newly discovered emails will be limited to only the timeframe when Secretary Clinton was in office. If so, that would exclude any potential of evidence of intent to conceal them from Congress after she left office.
The chairman wrote:
Accordingly, please explain:
- Are the press reports that the FBI has obtained a search warrant accurate? If so, when was that warrant application filed with a court, before or after your October 28, 2016 letter to Congress?
- Which court authorized the search warrant?
- Does the scope of the authorized search include communications between Secretary Clinton and her senior aides after she left office, during the time frame when emails were deleted using BleachBit, a software program specifically designed to destroy and prevent recovery? If not, why not?
- Did the Justice Department resist the FBI's request for a warrant? If so, what reasons were given for that resistance?
- When was the first request for a search warrant made to the Justice Department?
- How many times has the FBI requested the Justice Department apply for a search warrant in this matter? For each request, please note whether the warrant application was authorized and if it was not, please describe the reason why not.
Grassley has previously questioned the narrow scope of the voluntary searches conducted on other senior aides' laptops through negotiated immunity agreements. It appears that the search warrant DOJ reportedly approved last weekend may be the first time the department approved "compulsory process" in the course of FBI's investigation.
The chairman said it is important for the public to understand whether the scope of that warrant is broad enough to expose any potential cover-up after she left office. He told Comey he wants answers to his questions by no later than Nov. 17.
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