Sen. Al Franken (D., Minn.) called for hearings Sunday into what he called the "rogue elements" in the FBI that he says are trying to influence the results of the presidential election.
FBI Director James Comey has come under fierce criticism from the Hillary Clinton campaign and other Democrats for sending a letter to Congress stating that emails related to the investigation of her private email server use were found during a separate investigation. Later reporting showed that the other probe was into disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner, whose estranged wife Huma Abedin is Clinton's top aide, and thousands of emails on Weiner's computer could have been sent to or from Clinton's server.
In addition, there have been reported divisions in the FBI over the investigation into the Clinton Foundation and whether financial crimes or pay-for-play actions occurred regarding the foundation's donors and Clinton's State Department.
"I think it was troubling that [Comey] put that vague letter out 11 days before the election," Franken said on CNN's State of the Union. "I think even more troubling is what we've heard from sort of the rogue elements within the FBI, seemingly tipping off former Mayor [Rudy] Guliani that something was up … That's not the FBI. That's not what the FBI is supposed to do. So I'm on the Judiciary Committee. I'm sure we will have hearings. I'm sure that FBI Director Comey will be before us, and I think he should answer questions about this… What's been happening there has been a little hinky, I think, so we'll be asking him questions."
Franken said the hearings would get to the bottom of the "rogue element within the FBI" that thought it was appropriate to go outside the agency "trying to affect the election." Franken added agents were responding to "scurrilous right-wing books," seemingly referring to Peter Schweizer's book Clinton Cash, which uncovered favorable deals made between Clinton Foundation donors and Clinton's State Department.
"That's disturbing, and if you're the Director of the FBI, you should be able to prevent that from happening," he said.
"So you're calling for hearings to talk to Director Comey about what you call rogue elements in the FBI?" host Jake Tapper asked.
"Yeah," Franken said. "I think that there should be hearings, and I'm certain there will be hearings in the Judiciary Committee on this matter."