The potential felony was referred to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher Wray, along with corroborating documents. Chuck Grassley and Lindsey Graham referred British spy Christopher Steele to the Department of Justice so that they could look into whether Steele made false statements to the agency "about the distribution of claims" in the dossier he authored.
"Remember, before the Senate - before the House Judiciary Committee, Congressmen Jim Jordan, Ron DeSantis, other people were asking, how was this funded?" said Chaffetz. The dossier forms much of the basis for Congress and the DOJ's investigation into aforementioned alleged ties between Trump and Russian Federation. "You had people at the senior most level at the Department of Justice saying well, we know but we're not going to tell you".
The two Republicans told the Justice Department on Friday that they believed that Steele may have lied to Federal Bureau of Investigation about "the distribution of claims from the dossier".
It claimed there was collusion between Mr Trump's presidential campaign and Russia, and that the Russians have information that could be used to blackmail the President.
There are now three ongoing congressional investigations into allegations of Russian interference in the election and complicity by Donald Trump's campaign team. "But. I feel obliged to pass that information along to the Justice Department for appropriate review." Sen.More news: Serena Williams withdraws from Australian Open
More news: Games Of Thrones Season 8 In Coming In 2019
More news: Thompson done as Packers GM
The bipartisan split in the congressional investigations has seen Republicans seeking to undermine the credibility of Steele and the firm that hired him to produce the dossier, Fusion GPS.
"The referral is for further investigation only, and is not meant to be an allegation of a crime", the committee's release said. "Publicizing a criminal referral based on classified information raises serious questions about whether this letter is nothing more than another attempt to discredit government sources, in the midst of an ongoing criminal investigation", Levy said in a statement.
Steve Bannon reportedly called a June 2016 Trump Tower meeting "treasonous:" Trump's former chief strategist also reportedly called the meeting between several Trump campaign officials and Russians "unpatriotic", according to an explosive new book written by columnist Michael Wolff.
Fusion GPS didn't immediately respond to CNBC's request for comment.
"I don't take lightly making a referral for criminal investigation".