NSA chief Rogers & DNI Coats stonewall Senate Intel hearing on Trump
- Author: Zachary Reyes Jun 07, 2017,
Jun 07, 2017, 19:26
The sources said Coats concluded after the meeting that Trump's suggestion that he intervene with Comey's investigation would be inappropriate.
The event was scheduled five weeks ago as a review of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, but it quickly morphed into another chance for lawmakers to get some answers on the Justice Department's investigation into President Donald Trump's campaign and Russian meddling in the U.S. election.
"In my time of service", Coats said, "I have never been pressured, I've never felt pressure to intervene or interfere, in any way, with shaping intelligence in a political way".
Coats was testifying Wednesday before the Senate intelligence committee.
Rogers was responding to a senator's question about whether President Donald Trump asked him to intervene in or downplay the ongoing FBI investigation into Russia's election meddling and possible ties with the Trump campaign.
It has been reported that Mr Trump asked the head of the intelligence agency t o publicly state there is no evidence of collusion between Moscow and his campaign.
Dan Coats, the director of national intelligence, and Adm. Mike Rogers, the director of NSA, largely declined to discuss details about their interactions with Trump when pressed on the matter during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing.
The chairman of the Senate Intelligence committee is making a pitch for the reauthorization of a law governing the collection of foreign intelligence, saying it's critical to monitoring militants, potential terror threats and is subject to multiple layers of oversight.
During a tense exchange with the committee's top Democrat, Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia, also lauded the law.
The Washington Post reported Tuesday that Trump had asked Coats how he could prevent Comey from investigating his former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, over his ties to Russian Federation.
The key testimony comes as a new Post-ABC News poll said that a 56-percent majority of US adults think Trump is interfering with several Russian Federation investigations rather than cooperating, while 61 percent think Trump fired Comey to protect himself rather than for the good of the country.
Trump's surrogates may have said earlier this week that the President will not block Comey from testifying by claiming executive privilege.
Senators are trying to find out what Donald Trump asked Rogers and Coats about the Russian Federation probe.
Following a briefing at the White House attended by officials from several government agencies, Trump asked everyone to leave the room except for Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats and CIA Director Mike Pompeo, according to the Post. Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein will also testify.