The Obama team's ties to the Brookings Institution are deep, and so are those of impeachment witness Fiona Hill.
The revelation that Christopher Steele’s primary sub-source for his dossier was an American resident tied to a liberal think tank close to the Obama administration has triggered new investigative interest.
The identification of Igor Danchenko as Steele’s subsource — reported by Real Clear Investigations and then confirmed by Danchenko's lawyer to the New York Times — means Steele’s dossier relied on someone who wasn't based in Russia despite claims to the contrary by the FBI.
In at least two of the applications for its Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant targeting Trump adviser Carter Page, the FBI referred to the primary sub-source of the document as "truthful and cooperative" and "Russian-based," according to Justice Department inspector general Michael Horowitz's report last December.
Danchenko also worked for several years until 2010 at the Brookings Institute, a think tank familiar to many in the Obama administration and to one key witness in the impeachment proceedings against President Trump.
Fiona Hill, a Russia expert at the National Security Council and an impeachment witness against Trump, worked at the Brookings Institution in 2016 and co-authored a paper with Danchenko prior to the dossier being assembled, according to Real Clear Politics.
In addition, the president of the Brookings Institution — former Clinton administration figure Strobe Talbott — contacted Steele early in the Russia collusion probe and requested a copy of his dossier to share with Obama administration officials, according to Steele's recent testimony in a British lawsuit.
The sudden web of connections between Danchenko, Hill, Talbott and others inside Brookings has spurred Republicans to start investigating the think tank, a 501c 3 tax-exempt organization.
"It looks like there were a lot of connections to the Brookings Institute," said former House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, one of the first members of Congress to help unravel the failings and abuses in the now-discredited Russia collusion investigation.
Nunes told Fox News' Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo that he is opening a "full-blown" probe into the role Brookings and its figures played with Steele and the entire Russia episode.
"People may remember the president of Brookings back in 2016, we know that he had given the dossier to a few people, we had that through testimony," Nunes explained. "You also may remember that the State Department was involved and there were additional dossiers that weren't the Steele dossiers, except that they mirrored the Steele dossiers."
"And we think there is a connection between the president of Brookings and those dossiers that were given to the State Department that mirrored the Steele dossiers," he continued.
The links between Obama, Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton and Brookings run deep.