Wednesday, Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell, sent top Republican senators a list combining former senior Obama administration officials who are likely to have contributed to involve efforts that “unmasked” former national security adviser Michael Flynn. In that list is former Vice President Joe Biden.
It is clear Obama and his administration were up to no good before he was even a President. Trump has deemed his act of undermining him and targeting his top associates as the “Obamagate”.
The list, obtained by POLITICO, also includes high-level officials such as former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, former FBI Director James Comey, and former White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough. Thirty-nine people in total are listed, ranging from White House officials to diplomats and Treasury Department officials. Grenell declassified the list last week.
“At this point, I have no business alleging anything because all I know is his name’s on there. He’ll have to answer that,” Grassley told reporters when asked about Biden’s inclusion on the list. “There may not be anything that would be wrong with it. We don’t know.”
The unmasking requests came amid the officials’ escalating concerns about the Trump campaign and transition team’s contacts with Russian officials — concerns that would culminate in a special counsel investigation that has consumed much of Trump's presidency.
National security officials can seek to reveal the identity of individuals involved in conversations subject to government surveillance, a process known as “unmasking.” Such requests are common; for example, last year alone, U.S. spy agencies were asked 7,724 times to reveal the identities of Americans caught up in those intelligence intercepts.
An accompanying memo to Grenell, signed by National Security Agency Director Paul Nakasone, notes that each person was “an authorized recipient” of the information and that the unmasking was approved through the agency’s normal protocol.
Johnson and Grassley, who are spearheading an investigation targeting Biden’s son Hunter, have drawn scrutiny from Democrats who say the GOP senators are using the upper chamber to boost Trump’s political fortunes. But Johnson and Grassley say their efforts are intended to seek accountability over alleged wrongdoing surrounding the origins of the Russia investigation.
“The officials listed should confirm whether they reviewed this information, why they asked for it and what they did with it, and answer many other questions that have been raised by recent revelations. We are making this public because the American people have a right to know what happened," the senators explained in a statement.
Johnson's committee will start requesting interviews with former officials listed, especially Biden.
“This campaign to sabotage this administration — it is outrageous what these officials from the Obama administration did to the incoming administration,” Johnson said. “There are so many questions that need to be answered.”
Clapper and McDonough refused to comment.
I smell dirty work...