House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes is threatening to hold Attorney General Jeff Sessions in contempt of Congress for failing to hand over classified materials related to the Russia investigation.
Nunes phoned into Fox & Friends Sunday to explain that two weeks ago, he sent Sessions a classified letter demanding “very important” documents regarding counterintelligence investigations. He claims he was ignored. Then, last week, he sent a subpoena for the information.
“On Thursday, we discovered that they are not going to comply with our subpoena on very important information that we need,” Nunes explained, adding, “The only thing left to do is we have to move quickly to hold the attorney general of the United States in contempt and that is what I will press for this week.”
The Department of Justice (DOJ) pushed back on Sunday, and released a letter they sent to Nunes on Thursday, May 3, which addressed the classified information Nunes had requested.According to the letter, Nunes had asked for information on a specific individual, that the DOJ considers to be a very valuable person for a counterintelligence operation.
“The Department has determined that, consistent with applicable law and longstanding Executive Branch policy, it is not in a position to provide information responsive to your request regarding a specific individual,” Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd wrote in a signed letter. “Disclosure of responsive information to such requests can risk severe consequences, including potential loss of human lives, damage to relationships with valued international partners, compromise of ongoing criminal investigations, and interference with intelligence activities.”
Boyd continued, “The Department and its intelligence community partners would welcome the opportunity to discuss whether there are other ways to accommodate the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence’s oversight inquiry.”