Michael Atkinson, the inspector general of the intelligence community, meaning the chief internal watchdog for the nation’s intelligence agencies, wrote to the senators that he would be happy to conduct such an investigation, but could only do it if President Donald Trump asks him.

“The authority over access to classified information ultimately rests with the President of the United States,” Atkinson wrote to Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia, the ranking Democrat on the Intelligence Committee, and the three other senators. “It is well-established that the President of the United States has broad latitude concerning the process through which security clearances are granted, transferred, or revoked, as well as broad flexibility in determining whom to choose as his advisors and to what extent those advisors may gain access to information, including national security information.”