Trump tried to get intelligence officials to deny collusion
- Author: Leroy Wright May 25, 2017,
May 25, 2017, 21:10
President Trump asked two of the country's top intelligence chiefs to publicly disavow possible Russian collusion with his election campaign, but the officials considered the request to be inappropriate and refused, US media reports say.
Unless the administration seeks to claim that any existing documents can not be disclosed because they represent "privileged" communications involving the president, the committee said the "expectation is for the request to be met".
I think it will be proved when former FBI Director James Comey testifies, that every meeting and dealing which former national security adviser Michael Flynn had with Russian Federation was done with Trump's approval.
On March 20, former FBI Director James Comey confirmed under oath to the House Intelligence Committee that there was an ongoing FBI investigation into ties between the Trump campaign and Russian interests.
Coats also declined Tuesday to say whether he and Rogers discussed reports of possible efforts by Trump to stifle federal investigations into Russian interference in last year's US presidential election.
On Tuesday, former CIA Director John Brennan told lawmakers he had noticed contacts between associates of Trump's campaign and Russian Federation during the campaign and grew concerned Moscow sought to lure Americans down 'a treasonous path'.
While Brennan would not specifically identify any individuals associated with the Trump campaign who had contacts with Russian officials and would not opine as to whether there was any collusion or collaboration, he did tell lawmakers why he was concerned about the contacts occurring against the general background of Russian efforts to meddle in the election.
On Wednesday morning, the top Democrat on the committee said it would subpoena Flynn in its probe into alleged Russian meddling in the presidential election after he declined to appear before the panel.
Flynn, a retired general, is a key witness in the Russian Federation investigations because of his ties to Moscow.
While Flynn decides what, if anything, he'll provide to Congress, the chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform said the Federal Bureau of Investigation will not be turning over memos and other materials that detail discussions between Comey and Trump. He says the committee will be "following up with subpoenas" to maximize the chances of getting information from Flynn.
Subsequently, reports emerged that Trump in several conversations with Comey had asked for his personal loyalty, which Comey declined to offer.
A week ago, the Justice Department announced the appointment of former FBI Director Robert Mueller as special counsel in charge of the investigation.
Meanwhile, Page said Wednesday that details are still being worked out about his testimony before the House intelligence committee next month.
Schiff said the House panel had invited its first group of witnesses to testify, it is obtaining documents, and assessing who will cooperate voluntarily, and who will have to be subpoenaed. He says he wants at least part of his testimony to be public. Page has denied any involvement in Russian attempts to influence the election.