James Comey Could Shed Light on Russia, Trump's Wiretap Charge

Nick Mcbride
March 20, 2017

The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee confirmed on "Fox News Sunday" that there was no evidence to suggest that Trump was wiretapped.

Mr Nunes said a leak involving Mr Trump's former aide Michael Flynn was "the one crime we know" of in his investigation into accusations of Russian interference in the USA election.

Trump and aides have also denied any connection to Russians who sought to hack Democratic officials during last year's election, and said opponents are leaking derogatory information against them as part of a "witch hunt" to undermine the presidency. FBI Director James Comey and Mike Rogers, the director of the National Security Agency, are slated to testify.

In one sense, the unusual controversy over Trump's tweets has left the President in a position where he is most comfortable politically - at odds with the media and the political and intelligence establishment in Washington.

Devin Nunes, the Republican chairman of the USA congressional committee on intelligence, said on Sunday: "Everything I have up to this morning - no evidence of collusion".

But this Sunday on "Meet The Press", Schiff, D-Calif., told host Chuck Todd, "I was surprised to see Director Clapper say that because I don't think you can make that claim categorically as he did".

Adding to the intrigue, Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from any Russia-related inquiries after it was learned that he had met twice with the Russian ambassador in the months before Trump took office.

But the question of whether Trump Tower was bugged - an accusation first lodged by the president on Twitter - nevertheless has risen to the top of Washington's political agenda, becoming something of a national obsession even as a growing number of lawmakers and top United States officials assert there is no evidence of any such claim.

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ISC chairman Dominic Grieve said: "I note GCHQ's public denial of the potentially damaging allegations against them". Comey and the head of the National Security Agency are slated to testify at a House hearing on March 20.

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"The one crime we know that's been committed is that one", he said. "You're stuck with me for about another six and a half years", he said.

And remember: Though Nunes has laid to rest speculation the government bugged the phones of Trump Tower, he has not yet commented on whether there were wiretaps of others connected to Trump, outside the tower.

"The Justice Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation has to really clear this, otherwise the administration has decided that they with impunity can say anything and its really damaging", she said. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said on Sunday that the committee "will be taking them seriously" at its own hearing later this month.

The California Republican also said there was "no evidence of collusion" between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign.

House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said on "Fox News Sunday" that while he also has not seen evidence of the wiretap claim, "we will investigate each and every one of these things". That was the conclusion of a report published by U.S. intelligence agencies in January. And that's what I wish he would explain to us on the Intelligence Committee and to the American people.

I think for a lot of Americans this will be the first time to really tune in to exactly what the Russians did and what the investigation involves and I'd like to walk through with both directors: What do we know about the Russian operation?

"If we don't roll back Iran's gains throughout the region, we're not going to have stability, and we're not going to defend U.S. interests to the degree that we should", Cotton said.

Other reports by VgToday

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