Proving that wonders never cease on Capitol Hill, the House Intelligence Committee is apparently ready to let the public in on the contents of the interview it conducted with Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson.
Ranking member Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and Simpson had both been pushing for the release of the transcript in recent weeks. Given that chairman Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) has been running his own investigation and has been a de facto mole for the White House, however, it didn’t seem likely he would be willing to cooperate with Schiff and the Democrats on essentially anything involved in the Russia probe.
According to CNN, however, the vote to release the transcript was unanimous.
With the vote, the House panel will be second committee to make the details of Simpson’s interview public. Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, last week released the transcript of Simpson’s August Senate Judiciary Committee interview without the consent of Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley of Iowa.
Simpson’s interviews have emerged as a significant element of the Russia investigation thanks to the political fight over the dossier on Trump and Russia compiled by ex-British intelligence agent Christopher Steele.
The release of the full transcript is notable as Simpson, Schiff, and others familiar with the testimony have alleged that selective leaks in recent weeks have mischaracterized the firm and its relationship with Steele.
Republicans have been trying to push the narrative that the entire FBI counterintelligence investigation of the the Trump campaign is little more than a political hit job that was solely based on opposition research collected by Steele and Fusion GPS. Simpson’s testimony, however, doesn’t do much to advance that narrative.
The facts bear out that the dossier only served to corroborate other information the FBI already had, meaning that there was already basis for an investigation well before the former MI6 agent contacted federal agents in 2016 with his concerns.