Russian Federation 'tried to hijack U.S. election': USA senator

Richard Burr, North Carolina's senior senator and a Republican, must have sat "bolt upright" this week when a commentator for the MSNBC network mentioned him in the same context with the late Sen.

Ahead of Thursday's Senate hearing, Warner pledged to keep the investigation focused on the reason it was started.

Rubio spoke Thursday at a Senate intelligence committee hearing on Russian meddling in the USA presidential election.

"I will not prejudge the outcome of our investigation", Senator Mark Warner told a rare public intelligence committee hearing on alleged Russian efforts to influence elections.

The Obama administration left behind a trail of clues for the Senate Intelligence Committee in case President Donald Trump's team tried to destroy evidence related to the Russian Federation probe.

He added: "That effort was unsuccessful".

Clinton Watts, a national security expert with the George Washington Center for Cyber and Homeland Security, testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee in Washington on Thursday that suspected Russian trolling operations and websites tried to influence the presidential race long before the summer. Watts testified social media campaigns targeted Ryan "hoping to foment further unrest amongst USA democratic institutions".

Watts later told reporters that other Republican candidates were also affected by Russian measures.

"I don't know. I have not seen the materials", Spicer said.

"We have high confidence that President Putin ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the USA presidential election", James Clapper, the former director of national intelligence, said at the time.

"They are dropping dead even in Western countries", he said. Watts said he fears for his own safety after speaking about Russian efforts.

"Russia's new and improved online active measures shifted aggressively toward US audiences in late 2014 and throughout 2015", he said.

But Russian President Vladimir Putin has flatly denied the allegations.

The House Intelligence panel's parallel investigation has been gripped by partisan paralysis.

Last week, Mr Nunes went straight to the White House after hearing allegations about surveillance of Mr Trump's team, rather than sharing them with Democrat colleagues on the panel.

Recent comments about Russian Federation intelligence collection made this month on MSNBC by Evelyn Farkas, a former deputy assistant Secretary of Defense who left in 2015, have received attention this week and Sean Spicer brought them up during today's briefing.

Spicer did, however, say Thursday that the White House has invited the chairmen and ranking members of the House and Senate Intelligence Committees to review documents it says are related to "whether information collected on USA persons was mishandled or leaked".

Putin also said he's ready to meet with President Donald Trump at an upcoming Arctic summit.

Democrats have called for House intelligence committee chairman Representative Devin Nunes to recuse himself because of his ties to the Trump team, especially because the investigation includes looking at contacts that Russians had with Mr Trump's associates.

  • Leroy Wright