House Intel Republicans Just Signaled They're Ready to End Russia Investigation
- Author: Jon Douglas Mar 13, 2018,
Mar 13, 2018, 5:40
Representative Mike Conaway, who has been overseeing the investigation, said the committee had found no evidence of collusion between President Donald Trump's campaign and the Russians. A declassified version then will be made public.
"That meeting should never have taken place", Conaway said. "We found perhaps some bad judgment, inappropriate meetings, inappropriate judgment in taking meetings - but only Tom Clancy could take this series of inadvertent contacts, meetings, whatever, and weave that into some sort of a spy thriller that could go out there". "We can not through all of our investigation find [that]", Conaway said.
Following the news, Mr Trump wrote in all capitals on Twitter: "The House Intelligence Committee has, after a 14 month long in-depth investigation, found no evidence of collusion or coordination between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation to influence the 2016 presidential election".
"Additional follow-on efforts arising from the investigation include oversight of the unmasking of Americans' names in intelligence reports, FISA (surveillance) abuse, and other matters", according to the outline of the GOP draft memo. Rep. Mike Conaway of Texas says the panel's GOP members don't accept the finding that Russian Federation sought to help Trump.
The Senate Intelligence Committee is still probing the issue, as is special counsel Robert Mueller, whose wide-ranging investigation is also looking into other potential misdeeds by those in the president's orbit.
"On a whole host of investigative threads, our work is fundamentally incomplete, some issues partially investigated, others, like that involving credible allegations of Russian money laundering, remain barely touched", Schiff said.
Conaway dismissed the idea of keeping the investigation open any longer, saying that if Democrats expected him to "sit around and wait with the expectation that something might happen", his answer was "no". "We're dealing in facts, and we found no evidence of collusion".
The GOP leaders will also "content that evidence does not support" the assessment by the USA intelligence community that Russia-at the urging of Vladimir Putin-tried to help Trump win. He said Democrats would have an opportunity to offer their input before the report is sent for declassification and ultimately public release, a process that could take at least a month.
Democrats have accused committee Republicans of shirking the investigation in order to protect the Republican president and his associates, some of whom have pleaded guilty to charges including lying to investigators and conspiring against the United States.
Conway's announcement enraged Democrats, who have warned their Republican colleagues against ending the investigation.
"The bottom line: The Russians did commit active measures against our election in '16, and we think they will do that in the future", he told reporters.
The witnesses Republicans interviewed, Swalwell argued, could refuse to answer questions because they weren't under subpoena.
"House Republicans failing to perform an honest investigation into Russia's interference for President Trump marks a low point for Congress and political leadership in America", McMullin wrote on Twitter. He called the development a "tragic milestone" and said history would judge them harshly.
Conaway said he hoped to work with Schiff on the probe but Democrats are expected to release their own report.
With the House investigation wrapping up, the Senate Intelligence Committee's investigation into Russian Federation meddling in the election continues.