White House Denies Russian Connection During Election

Mr Benjamin, Director for at the Centre for International Understanding at Dartmouth College, added: "It's time to have a true, bipartisan investigation, outside of Congress and insulated from White House pressure".

Facing a flurry of questions about his relationship with Russia, Trump declared that "nobody that I know of" on his campaign had contact with any Russian officials during his candidacy. This was at worst risky and illegal behavior; at best, it was staggeringly unpatriotic. The question here isn't simply: What did Trump know and when did he know it?

The problem is that when Trump insists Flynn didn't break the law, he's really saying that his personal belief about Flynn's innocence should make it so.

It's hardly a surprise for a man who has lived his entire adult life cultivating and attacking coverage in the tabloids to continue that practice in the White House.

This means that Flynn - who spoke with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak about sanctions prior to taking office - will likely get off scot-free. Amid the uncertainty over Flynn's future, several of the president's top advisers, including chief of staff Reince Priebus and counsel Don McGahn, ducked in and out of late-night meetings in the West Wing.

The Russia story revived after Trump sought the resignation of National Security Adviser Michael Flynn for misleading Vice President Pence and other officials about a phone conversation he had with the Russian ambassador to the United States.

Mr Manafort told the newspaper: "I have never knowingly spoken to Russian intelligence officers, and I have never been involved with anything to do with the Russian government or the Putin administration or any other issues under investigation today. I have sincerely apologised to the President and the Vice President, and they have accepted my apology", Flynn said.

Rather, who covered the Watergate investigation and impeachment proceedings against former President Richard Nixon for CBS in the 1970s, likened the "cascading intensity" of Trump's Russian Federation scandal to the pre-avalanche of Watergate. And as Glenn Greenwald argues, there is an enormous amount of hypocrisy afoot in Washington around leakers - many decried it as a heinous crime when it happened under Obama, yet are now celebrating it under Trump. As Mother Jones reported, as late as 2009, one of Russia's biggest kleptocrats, Alimzhan Tokhtakhounov, was getting the take from a gambling operation run out of Trump Tower, in an apartment directly below one of Trump's own. And might that info-trading business amount to something even more egregious than Russia's attempt to sway the US election? I'll tell you what else I see.

Sources say transcripts showed the two discussed Obama administration sanctions on Russian Federation, a possible violation of federal law since President Trump was not yet in office.

A former senior counter-terrorism official has called for an independent investigation - something akin to the 9/11 Commission - into Donald Trump's possible links to Russian Federation. The FBI and the Senate Intelligence Community are investigating. And Chaffetz tells us there's nothing to look at.

  • Leroy Wright