White House official: Not clear how much sensitive info GOP lawmakers will get from DoJ in meeting on FBI informant

Key Points
  • It is unclear how much information the Justice Department will give to GOP lawmakers seeking sensitive information on an FBI informant who reportedly spoke to members of the Trump campaign.
  • "They'll have access to information. It is up to Justice what form that takes," a White House official tells CNBC.
  • Trump mandated that chief of staff John Kelly broker the details of the negotiations over the documents.

A meeting scheduled for Thursday will include negotiations over how much sensitive information GOP lawmakers will see regarding an FBI informant who reportedly spoke to members of the Trump campaign about possible Russian attempts to breach the campaign, according to a White House official.

It is unclear how much information the lawmakers — House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes and House Oversight Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy — will actually get access to at the meeting with Justice Department officials, the official told CNBC on the condition of anonymity. Nunes is a staunch Trump ally who worked on the campaign's transition.

"They'll have access to information. It is up to Justice what form that takes," the official said.

The meeting comes just days after President Donald Trump called for the Justice Department to probe whether the FBI had any political motivation in its investigation. There have been reports that the agency sent a confidential informant to talk to members of the campaign.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, in turn, said the DoJ's inspector general would widen an existing probe. Rosenstein said that "if anyone did infiltrate or surveil participants in a presidential campaign for inappropriate purposes, we need to know about it and take appropriate action."

Critics say the deputy attorney general might have given up too much in quickly assenting to Trump's demand, although some experts argue that it might have been Rosenstein's best move possible.

He and FBI Director Christopher Wray met with the president Monday at the White House.

The meeting, which is set to take place at the Justice Department on Thursday, will also include Wray, Principal Associate Deputy Attorney General Ed O'Callaghan and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats. White House chief of staff John Kelly will convene the meeting.

The White House official said it is possible that Kelly "opens the meeting and says something about both sides playing nice."

"The president is mandating that the chief broker the details of it," the official added, referring to Kelly.

While some perceived that the meeting is Trump's way of demanding that the DoJ turn over everything to Nunes and Gowdy, that isn't necessarily the case, according to the official.

Rather, the official said, it could be a way to "thread the needle" — "a way to accommodate congressional requests while still maintaining the integrity of the investigation."

"There's always a give-and-take," the official added. "I think what they will get is a briefing of some sort and access to documents in some fashion."