House Judiciary Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) applauded White House Chief of Staff John Kelly’s call for a special counsel to look into the Uranium One deal during an interview Monday evening.
“I am glad that General Kelly sees the need for a second special counsel, too. America deserves answers, and as more and more worrisome information comes to light, the need for a truly independent investigator is greater than ever,” Gaetz said in a statement on Tuesday.
Kelly told Fox News host Laura Ingraham Monday night on Ingraham’s Angle, “I think it’s doubly important that when these kinds of accusations are made that they should be investigated.”
When asked if there should be “another special prosecutor,” Kelly responded, “I guess so.”
“As a layman looking at this kind of thing, we need to find someone who’s very, very objective, who can get to the bottom of these accusations. I think it’s important, again, the American people have an absolute right to know these things, unless things are classified,” he said.
Earlier this month, The Hill reported that the FBI had gathered evidence of a Russian company engaged in a bribery and kickback scheme to grow Russia’s atomic energy business inside the U.S., at the same time the Obama administration allowed its parent company to buy one-fifth of the U.S. uranium assets, in 2010.
Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sat on a committee reviewing the purchase, during which Bill Clinton received a $500,000 speaking fee from a Russian investment bank, and the Clinton Foundation received millions.
Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating Russian interference into the election and any potential collusion, was FBI director at the time of the investigation.
An FBI witness, who secretly gathered evidence for the investigation, said through his lawyer that he was prevented by the Obama administration from discussing the investigation with lawmakers, since he signed a non-disclosure agreement (NDA). However, the Justice Department last week released him from the NDA, and he is expected to talk to lawmakers about what he knows.
So far, the House intelligence, House Oversight and Government Reform Committees, and Senate Judiciary Committee are investigating the issue. Gaetz said”
Evidence has emerged that the FBI withheld information from Congress and from the American people about Russian corruption of American uranium companies. These deeply troubling events took place when Mr. Mueller was the Director of the FBI — as such, his ability to investigate these issues with impartiality is hopelessly compromised. General Kelly is entirely correct that Mr. Mueller should recuse himself for any investigations into the Uranium One deal.
Gaetz noted that he introduced an amendment in July calling for a second special counsel to look into the “worrisome conduct of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former FBI Director James Comey, former Attorney General Loretta Lynch, and Special Counsel Robert Mueller.”
“Any illegal Russian involvement in the development and sale of American uranium is an unacceptable threat to national security, and any ‘pay-to-play’ connections between the Clinton Foundation and the State Department must be investigated and prosecuted to the full extent of the law. The connections are too deep, and the evidence too well-documented, for this to be ignored,” he said.