Photo by: Jose Luis Magana
Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks during the opening of the summit on Efforts to Combat Human Trafficking at Department of Justice in Washington, Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. President Donald Trump, dogged by an unrelenting investigation into his campaign’s ties to Russia, lashes out at the FBI and Justice Department as politically biased ahead of the expected release of a classified Republican memo criticizing FBI surveillance tactics. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)
Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Friday that he will push the Justice Department to clean up any shortcomings identified in the wake of the new House intelligence committee memo, saying “no department is perfect.”
Mr. Sessions, in a statement, did not say whether he agreed with the conclusions in the memo, which argues top FBI and Justice Department officials during the Obama administration, bleeding into the Trump administration, used tainted evidence to justify spying on a Trump campaign figure.
Instead, Mr. Sessions said Congress’s questions are legitimate and must be answered.
“Congress has made inquiries concerning an issue of great importance for the country and concerns have been raised about the department’s performance. I have great confidence in the men and women of this Department. But no department is perfect,” Mr. Sessions, a former senator, said.
“Accordingly, I will forward to appropriate DOJ components all information I receive from Congress regarding this. I am determined that we will fully and fairly ascertain the truth,” he said.
Mr. Sessions’ top lieutenant, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, was one of those implicated in questionable behavior in the new memo. House intelligence committee Chairman Devin Nunes, author of the memo, concluded that Mr. Rosenstein was one of those who signed off on an application for a warrant justifying the surveillance of Trump advisor Carter Page.
Similar applications for spying authority were also signed by then-FBI Director James Comey, former Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, then-Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates and then-acting Deputy Attorney General Dana Boente.