Trump's wiretapping accusation comes to a head at Comey hearing

Whether or not Congressional committees find evidence of surveillance of the Trump campaign or of Russian influence they are determined to track down the source of newspaper reports of undisclosed contact between former national security adviser Michael Flynn and Mr Kislyak, described by U.S. intelligence sources as a spy recruiter.

"We have a lot of surveillance activities in this country,"' said Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, speaking on Fox News Sunday.

Nunes said he has seen "no evidence of collusion", reports. His committee is holding its first hearing on the matter on Monday.

Nunes said Monday's hearing would also look into the possibly illegal leaking of national security information since Trump's election in November.

Republican Rep. Tom Cole told reporters Friday that Trump should say sorry to Obama if he couldn't support his claims.

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.

"If it's just 100 coincidences, let the world know that is what it is, and let's move on", but if there is more to the contacts and a "convergence of political and financial ties", then those ties need to be "investigated fully", Swalwell said.

Trump's White House on Thursday brought British intelligence into the saga when it referred to a report on Fox & Friends that claimed Obama had the GCHQ spy on Trump for him. Members also secured a promise from the intelligence community that committee members will be privy to the same information provided to the Gang of Eight, a concession lawmakers say is necessary for them to conduct their investigation. "I hope that we can put an end to this wild goose chase, because what the president said was just patently false", the Democrat said.

'There was no FISA warrant that I'm aware of to tap Trump Tower, ' the California Republican stated on Fox News Sunday.

Critics say it has also debased the already-coarse tone of political debate in Washington and eroded the president's credibility at home and overseas.

Appearing on CBSs Face the Nation, Democrat Nancy Pelosi said that the Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation need to clarify on Trumps allegations of wiretapping.

Identities of Americans who show up in US surveillance against foreign targets are generally concealed, but can be unmasked by intelligence agencies in certain circumstances. But she says Trump does owe the American people an explanation.

The frequency and the level of those contacts raised alarms in U.S. intelligence and law enforcement circles.

But Representative Jason Chaffetz, chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, said that he had yet to see any evidence of wiretapping.

But the White House is angry that statements by former senior intelligence officials in the Obama administration - and by top congressional figures - that there is no evidence to substantiate the claims of alleged collusion with Russian Federation is not getting more coverage.

"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 United States interests to the degree that we should", Cotton said.

Meanwhile, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-California, told NBC News today "there is circumstantial evidence of collusion" and "direct evidence I think of deception".

  • Larry Hoffman