House Republicans seek Department of Justice investigation into potentially illegal leaks

Republicans are concerned about leaks of classified info to the media.

— -- The GOP chairmen of the House Oversight and Judiciary committees have asked the Department of Justice inspector general to investigate immediately whether classified information was mishandled at the department after the resignation of retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn as White House national security adviser.

"We have serious concerns about the potential inadequate protection of classified information here," the Republicans wrote in the letter.

Rep. Elijah Cummings has fired back, saying in a statement today, "Chairman Chaffetz appears to be taking his marching orders directly from President Trump's tweet yesterday — instead of investigating Gen. Flynn's lies to the vice president and the American people, as well as his troubling ties with Russia, the chairman chose to target those who brought them to light."

Cummings continued, "Congress should be doing independent oversight of the executive branch and protecting whistleblowers, not running interference while the White House conceals their abuses and misleads the American people for weeks. Chairman Chaffetz said he didn't want to go on 'fishing expeditions,' but that's exactly what he's doing here."

Since Flynn's resignation, the president has attacked the intelligence community for the leaks and blamed the media for Flynn's departure, though the White House has said Trump asked for Flynn's resignation.

While Democrats have uniformly called for investigations into Flynn's conversations and the White House's handling of the episode, House GOP leaders have instead focused on the leaks.

Nunes has downplayed concerns about Flynn's actions and whether to review them in committee, though several Senate Republicans want Flynn to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee.