Report: Tapping Flynn’s phone calls required ‘unprecedented, unwarranted’ approval at ‘the highest levels’

In response to National Security Adviser Michael Flynn resigning late Monday over a phone call with the Russian ambassador, there has been a strong focus on who leaked the content of that call.

Fox News chief intelligence correspondent Catherine Herridge said Tuesday there are calls from Republicans for an investigation into the leaks and the surveillance of calls from Flynn by the intelligence community.

According to Herridge, surveilling Flynn’s calls “needs sign-off at the highest levels.”

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House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., said someone would have had to authorize the unmasking of Flynn’s name.

“If in fact the press reports are right, someone made the decision to deliberately listen to General Flynn’s phone calls and that is, I think… unprecedented, unwarranted and flat-out wrong,” Nunes said.

Herridge said Nunes is asking the FBI for an assessment of the recent leaks.

President Donald Trump posted a tweet saying: “The real story here is why are there so many illegal leaks coming out of Washington?”

Trump senior aide Kellyanne Conway appeared on “Fox & Friends” Tuesday morning to say the same thing. Talk radio host Laura Ingraham was also interviewed and she said the leaks are at a level she hasn’t seen “in quite some time.”

Ingraham also said she heard from Washington back channels that the “long knives were out for Flynn almost the moment he was announced.”

A charge that is consistent with an article suggesting it’s all part of a campaign to undermine the Trump administration.

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The article noted that Bloomberg’s Eli Lake wrote that former Obama officials and national security bureaucrats could be working together to selectively leak highly sensitive information, such as the transcript of Flynn’s call with the ambassador.

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Tom Tillison

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