Politics: House Russia Probe Dissolves Into a Fight Over Transcripts - - PressFrom - US
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Politics House Russia Probe Dissolves Into a Fight Over Transcripts

16:51  14 march  2018
16:51  14 march  2018 Source:   bloomberg.com

House Republicans say no evidence of collusion as they end Russia probe

  House Republicans say no evidence of collusion as they end Russia probe The House Intelligence Committee has concluded its interviews for the investigation into possible collusion between President Donald Trump's campaign operation and Russia, a move that signals the beginning of the end for the panel's Russia probe, according to a source familiar with the matter.(CNN)Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee announced Monday they found no evidence that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia and that they are shutting down their yearlong investigation.

Now that Republicans have terminated the House Intelligence Committee’s Russia probe , the biggest outstanding question is whether the public will ever see transcripts from dozens of its It’s also unclear whether Democrats could force the release of the transcripts over Republican objections.

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Representatives Mike Conaway, a Republican from Texas, speaks while chairing a House Intelligence Committee hearing with John Brennan, former director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), not pictured, in Washington, D.C., U.S.: House Russia Probe Dissolves Into Fight Over Public Transcripts © Bloomberg/Bloomberg House Russia Probe Dissolves Into Fight Over Public Transcripts

(Bloomberg) -- Now that Republicans have terminated the House Intelligence Committee’s Russia probe, the biggest outstanding question is whether the public will ever see transcripts from dozens of its closed-door witnesses.

Republicans on the Intelligence panel are reversing their earlier plans to release those transcripts, while Democrats say they plan to attach the documents to their final report.

With Republicans and Democrats planning to release dueling conclusions in the disputed inquiry, the transcripts may represent the only chance to get an unvarnished view of the evidence compiled by the committee over the past year.

Top Intel Dem excoriates GOP over end of Russia probe

  Top Intel Dem excoriates GOP over end of Russia probe The top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) ripped into Republicans on the committee on Monday after they announced they were ending the probe into alleged ties between the Trump campaign and Russian election meddling."While the Majority members of our committee have indicated for some time that they have been under great pressure to end the investigation, it is nonetheless another tragic milestone for this Congress, and represents yet another capitulation to the executive branch," Schiff said in a statement.

House Russia Probe Dissolves Into Fight Over Public Transcripts . Now that Republicans have terminated the House Intelligence Committee’s Russia probe , the Representative Michael Quigley of Illinois said Tuesday the goal of Republicans appears to have been to protect the president, "at all.

Republicans on the Intelligence panel are reversing their earlier plans to release those transcripts , while Democrats say they plan to attach the documents to their final report.

The panel’s top Republicans had said for several months that they planned to release the transcripts. But Representative Michael Conaway of Texas, who has been leading the investigation, said things had changed.

“We may not be able to do that, turns out,” he said in an interview, adding that he had been persuaded that such a move could discourage future witnesses from testifying before the committee.

Conaway’s reversal came Monday night, just after he announced the committee had found no evidence of collusion with Russian operatives by Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, triggering angry condemnation from Democrats.

As recently as March 5, when Conaway was asked whether he planned to release the transcripts, he replied, “Absolutely.”

Republicans Ending House Russia Probe Over Democrats' Objections

  Republicans Ending House Russia Probe Over Democrats' Objections Republicans who control the House Intelligence Committee ended an investigation into the 2016 presidential election over intense objections from Democrats, saying they found no evidence of collusion between President Donald Trump’s campaign and Russian operatives. The committee’s GOP leaders announced their decision on Monday, adding that they plan to release a report soon on their findings. The probe -- originally intended to be bipartisan -- is ending even though an inquiry by Special Counsel Robert Mueller remains underway and at least four people connected to the president’s campaign are facing criminal charges.

Democrats now in control of the crucial intelligence committee want to get back to their Russia probe . The House Republican leadership has yet to name the intelligence committee’s Republican membership for the new Congress, with the exception of retaining Devin Nunes as ranking Republican.

The growing partisan gap over the House investigation makes it increasingly likely that after investigators spent much of 2017 examining connections between the Trump campaign and Russia , the public may lack a definitive assessment about what occurred in 2016.

‘Deep Dive’

“I hope to release as much of the underlying data as is appropriate so that folks who are interested, who want to do a deep dive, can look at what we based it on,” he said at the time. “And those who want to get into the details like that, you know, they can see what the questions we asked and the answers to that.”

Back in January, House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes also said that committee Republicans planned to release all the transcripts when they issued their final report.

On Tuesday, the top Democrat on the panel, Adam Schiff , said that Democrats would push to release the transcripts, but the intelligence agencies would first have to scrub them for classified information. It’s also unclear whether Democrats could force the release of the transcripts over Republican objections.

“We intend to append to our report the complete transcripts of all the witnesses,” Schiff said. “The majority has said they support making these transcripts public. We will put to the test of whether they really do.”

Democrats fuming after House GOP ends Russia probe

  Democrats fuming after House GOP ends Russia probe House Democrats are expressing outrage over House Republicans' decision to end the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.Load Error

House Intelligence Committee Republicans voted on Friday against releasing interview transcripts of one of their House GOP colleagues that Democrats consider significant for the panel’s now-shuttered Russia probe . Two sources told The Daily Beast on Friday morning that Democrats on the House

House Republicans have fixated on a handful of career Justice Department and FBI officials over the past year as they've sought to cast doubt on the But after the firings of McCabe, the FBI deputy director who helped oversee a 2016 investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server

He said the transcripts would show that what Republicans called an investigation “was merely asking a witness, ‘Did you conspire with the Russians? Did you coordinate with the Russians? Did you collude with the Russians?’ And when the answer was no, they were content that was the end of the story. That is no way to conduct an investigation,” he said.

Handful of Transcripts

The panel has released a handful of transcripts when the witnesses requested it, including former Trump campaign aide Carter Page and Erik Prince, the former head of Blackwater Security and an informal Trump adviser who was questioned about a meeting with a Russian in the Seychelles.

The committee also voted in January to release the transcript of its interview with Glenn Simpson, who co-founded Fusion GPS, the firm that commissioned an unverified dossier outlining allegations of links between Trump and Russia. That vote followed a unilateral decision by Dianne Feinstein of California, the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, to release the transcript of that panel’s interview with Simpson.

House Democrats cite 'evidence' of Trump-Russia collusion

  House Democrats cite 'evidence' of Trump-Russia collusion Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee are sharply disagreeing with Republicans on the panel who say they don't see any evidence of collusion or coordination between President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign and Russia.WASHINGTON — Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee are sharply disagreeing with Republicans on the panel who say they don't see any evidence of collusion or coordination between President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign and Russia.

2nd Time as Farce? House Russia Probe Disintegrates Into Benghazi 2.0. The House Intelligence Committee’s primary responsibility is to oversee In the course of one afternoon, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes steered his panel’s Russia investigation into the troubled lane of

Schiff announces investigation into President Trump 'beyond Russia '. House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff looks to expand scope The Intelligence Committee on Wednesday also voted to hand over a slew of interview transcripts to Special Counsel Robert Mueller that were generated

Schiff Says Russia Probe ‘Far From Done’ After GOP Shuts It Down

According to the House Intelligence Committee, 73 witnesses have been interviewed by members and staff behind closed doors, including 54 sessions that were transcribed.

Schiff said Tuesday that committee Democrats will continue working on the Russia investigation. “Our work is far from done,” he said. He released a 21-page status report listing witnesses, documents and angles that Democrats say still need to be pursued. Those include questions about the hacking of campaign emails; possible contacts between Trump associates and Russian intermediates; and election security.

Report Due Soon

On Tuesday, Republicans said their final report would be released in the coming weeks. It will contradict assessments by the American intelligence community that Russian meddling in the election was designed to help Trump, according to a draft summary they sent out.

Democrats on the panel say they weren’t consulted on the decision to shut down the investigation. Representative Michael Quigley of Illinois said Tuesday the goal of Republicans appears to have been to protect the president, “at all costs.”

Quigley, who has been one of his party’s leading interviewers of witnesses, said some witnesses flat-out lied to the committee. In others cases, he said in a statement, Republicans “have done everything they can to defend these witnesses from answering our questions truthfully and have done nothing to corroborate a word they said.”

White House won't say if Putin is a friend of a foe

  White House won't say if Putin is a friend of a foe White House press secretary Sarah Sanders wouldn't say Thursday whether Russian President Vladimir Putin was a friend or a foe, telling reporters: "Russia is going to have to make that determination."Load Error

The House investigation into Russia ’s election meddling is in shambles. The Senate is more than happy to fill the void. As the House probe continued its collapse into a partisan shouting match Wednesday, Senate Intelligence Chairman Richard Burr and his Democratic counterpart

The House Intelligence Committee voted Friday to publicly release transcripts of 53 witness interviews — amounting to thousands of pages — in the panel’s now-defunct Russia investigation. The measure passed unanimously, though not until Republicans swatted down efforts by Democrats to release a

“Unfortunately, with our investigation coming to a premature end, we won’t be in a position to respond or hold those witnesses accountable,” Quigley said.

Trey Gowdy of South Carolina, one of the main Republican questioners, issued a contradictory statement, declaring that, “No witness provided evidence -- direct or circumstantial -- of collusion, coordination or conspiracy.”

Senators Still Working

By contrast, the Senate Intelligence Committee, which is conducting its own Russia inquiry, is continuing its work on a more bipartisan basis.

Chairman Richard Burr, a North Carolina Republican, said Tuesday his committee hasn’t seen evidence of collusion with Russia yet, but made clear the members aren’t done looking.

“Right today, I don’t have anything that would necessarily say that, but we have a lot of witnesses left to talk to,” Burr told reporters.

Nor has Burr concluded whether Russian President Vladimir Putin had a preference for Trump.

“A preference can be: I hate the other person,” he said. “Until we finish the investigation, I don’t know how to answer it.”

Burr said he’s not sure when the Senate panel will be finished interviewing witnesses. When asked if he thought it could be done in the first half of the year, he said, “I’m hopeful.”

The Senate Judiciary Committee, in the meantime, still plans to release transcripts of a handful of staff interviews in its Russia investigation, including its interview with Donald Trump Jr., but that release isn’t expected this week.

--With assistance from Steven T. Dennis

To contact the reporter on this story: Billy House in Washington at [email protected]

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Kevin Whitelaw at [email protected], Larry Liebert

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.

Outgoing lawyer says Trump approved statement calling for end to Mueller probe .
Outgoing lawyer says Trump approved statement calling for end to Mueller probeJohn Dowd, who resigned Thursday, issued a statement last weekend calling on Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to "bring an end to alleged Russia Collusion investigation.

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