Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) told reporters on Capitol Hill Tuesday that he plans to finish his committee's investigation into the origins of the FBI's Russia probe by October and release a public report before the election, CNN reports.

Driving the news: Graham sent a letter to Attorney General Bill Barr and acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell on Tuesday asking them to name the Obama administration officials who requested the identities of members of the Trump campaign or transition team caught up in foreign surveillance reports.

  • The request follows Grenell's declassification of the names of the Obama officials who requested the "unmasking" of an American who wound up being former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Why it matters: Democrats like Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) have accused Republicans of carrying out a "fishing expedition" to target President Trump's enemies for political reasons. Graham dismissed the allegations and said he had been planning the investigation "for a long time."

  • "I want to do it before the election — I want to get all the information out there," Graham said.
  • "I'm trying to explain to the American people what happened in Crossfire Hurricane. I gave Mueller all the space he needed to do his job. He's done his job, we got the Mueller report, we're going to do this by October."

The big picture: President Trump and many of his conservative allies have spent the last few weeks promoting #Obamagate, or the conspiracy theory that President Obama ordered the investigation in order to undermine the incoming administration.

  • While Graham has dismissed Trump's calls to subpoena Obama himself, he announced on Monday that the Senate Judiciary Committee will vote on June 4 on a broad subpoena authorization to call Obama-era officials for testimony.
  • Possible witnesses include former FBI director James Comey, former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe, former CIA director John Brennan, former national security adviser Susan Rice, and dozens of others.

Go deeper: Barr says DOJ review of Russia probe unlikely to lead to prosecution of Obama or Biden

Go deeper

Aug 27, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Trump's former spy chief: Being called a "nationalist" is not an insult

Former acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell praised President Trump in his Republican National Convention speech for being a Washington "outsider" and scoffed at the "DC crowd" for thinking that being called a "nationalist" is an insult.

The big picture: Grenell drew criticism from Democrats during his short stint as America's top intelligence official for his lack of experience and his alleged efforts to undermine the Russia investigation by selectively declassifying documents. He attacked the "Russia collusion" narrative in his RNC speech as "bogus," saying that the alleged abuses he saw "made me sick to my stomach."

The missed cyber opportunity in the Senate Intel report on Russia

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The Senate Intelligence Committee detailed shocking new revelations about the 2016 Trump campaign's dealings with Russia in the landmark final volume of its report on the matter, but it missed an opportunity to recommend cybersecurity fixes for today’s campaigns and parties — perhaps by design.

Why it matters: The DNC and RNC could be considered a type of “critical infrastructure,” because without them and the presidential and congressional fundraising they facilitate, U.S. politics as we know it wouldn’t exist. But because they fall outside the government’s protective cybersecurity remit, they are also uniquely vulnerable to outside threats.

Ex-DHS official says Trump offered pardons to immigration officials who broke the law

Miles Taylor, the former chief of staff of the Department of Homeland Security, claimed in a political ad released Tuesday that President Trump offered to "pardon U.S. government officials for breaking the law to implement his immigration policies."

Why it matters: Taylor, who quit the Trump administration in 2019 and endorsed Joe Biden last week, is one of a number of Republicans seeking to stop the president's re-election. Trump denied that he offered pardons to immigration officials when the allegations were first reported by the Washington Post and New York Times in August 2019.