Moments ago, Trey Gowdy appeared on Fox News, where he dropped a bombshell about how the FBI went about corroborating the discredited Steele dossier.
Last month the New York Times reported that the 35-page dossier, spiced up with tales of prostitutes and spies, sketched out a hair-raising story more than two years ago. Russian intelligence had used bribery and blackmail to try to turn Donald J. Trump into a source and ally, it said, and the Kremlin was running some Trump campaign aides practically as agents.
But the release on Thursday of the report by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, underscored what had grown clearer for months — that while many Trump aides had welcomed contacts with the Russians, some of the most sensational claims in the dossier appeared to be false, and others were impossible to prove. Mr. Mueller’s report contained over a dozen passing references to the document’s claims but no overall assessment of why so much did not check out.
Now the dossier — financed by Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee, and compiled by the former British intelligence agent Christopher Steele — is likely to face new, possibly harsh scrutiny from multiple inquiries.
Watch the video:
Former Republican South Carolina Rep. Trey Gowdy claimed Tuesday the FBI cited articles and information from longtime Clinton fixer Sidney Blumenthal as corroboration for claims made in the Steele dossier, a scenario the former congressman called “a problem.”
In an interview with Fox News’ Martha Maccallum, Gowdy said when he was still in Congress, he saw an FBI spreadsheet that laid out all of the specific claims in the dossier, which former British spy Christopher Steele authored. The spreadsheet also cited information the FBI believed corroborated Steele’s salacious report, he said.
“I’ve seen the spreadsheet, Martha, I have seen each factual assertion listed in that dossier, and then I’ve seen the FBI’s justification. And when you’re citing newspaper articles as corroboration for a factual assertion that you have made, you don’t need an FBI agent to go do a Google search,” said Gowdy, who served on the House Intelligence Committee and is a Fox News contributor.
“When the name Sidney Blumenthal is included as part of your corroboration, and when you’re the world’s leading law enforcement agency, you have a problem.”
Gowdy did not further explain how the FBI used information from Blumenthal, but his claim could be a potential bombshell as investigators probe the FBI’s use of the dossier in its investigation of possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian government.