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

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When U.S. politicians exploit foreign disinformation

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

U.S. political actors will keep weaponizing the impact of widespread foreign disinformation campaigns on American elections, making these operations that much more effective and attractive to Russia, China, Iran or other countries backing them.

Why it matters: Hostile powers’ disinformation campaigns aim to destabilize the U.S., and each time a domestic politician embraces them, it demonstrates that they work.

Michelle Obama: Trump administration contributing to her "low-grade depression"

Former First Lady Michelle Obama during the Obama Foundation Summit in Chicago, Illinois. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Former first lady Michelle Obama said on her Spotify podcast Wednesday that it's "exhausting" waking up daily to "yet another story" of a Black person being dehumanized, hurt, killed or falsely accused of something.

The big picture: Obama was speaking in the context of the nationwide Black Lives Matter protests prompted by May's death in police custody of George Floyd. "I know that I am dealing with some form of low-grade depression," she said. "Not just because of the quarantine, but because of the racial strife, and just seeing this administration, watching the hypocrisy of it, day in and day out, is dispiriting."

Go deeper: Barack and Michelle Obama sign podcast production

Filibuster and Obama fossil fuel ties could slow Biden's climate ambitions

Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images

Two new stories, taken together, highlight the political push-pull around Joe Biden's climate and energy plans.

Driving the news: Bloomberg reported on Wednesday that some left activists "want Biden to distance himself from former Obama administration advisers they view as either too moderate or too cozy with the fossil fuel industry."