Published: Mon, March 20, 2017
Global Media | By Meredith Barber

Russian Federation claims: U.S. intelligence chiefs to give evidence

Russian Federation claims: U.S. intelligence chiefs to give evidence

James Comey's formal confirmation of the probe on Monday follows months of news reports quoting anonymous government officials discussing the FBI-led, multi-agency probe into communications between Trump allies and Moscow in the lead-up to the 2016 election.

A report by the CIA, FBI and National Security Agency (NSA) said Russian leader Vladimir Putin "ordered" a campaign aimed at influencing the election.

During the House Intelligence Committee hearing Monday, Republican chair Rep. Devin Nunes asked whether there was any evidence Russians directly altered vote tallies in key states Trump won. Nunes told Fox News that he saw no information to show collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation.

"This is one in a series of hearings that will be happening", Spicer said. Schiff said. "Yes, it is possible, but is also possible, maybe more than possible, that they are not coincidental, not disconnected, and not unrelated". "There's certainly enough for us to conduct an investigation".

The U.S. intelligence community has accused Moscow of trying to influence the election, saying it initially wanted to derail then-candidate Hillary Clinton and then developed a preference for Trump.

Comey testified before the House Intelligence Committee, which is also investigating whether Trump was under surveillance before he became president.

And it's still possible that House Republicans pass their Obamacare repeal/replace legislation, giving Trump a boost to his agenda. Although he was a Trump supporter during the campaign, he is not as closely linked with the president as Nunes is.

The Democrats tried to build a prosecution case out of the multiple contacts between Trump aides and Russian officials and the failure of the Trump campaign or the Trump White House to disclose them until forced to. Page has declined to say whom he met there, but he has said they were mostly scholars.

"It's hard for me to react to that, let me just tell you what we've said is".

FBI Director James Comey (left) testifies in front of the House Intelligence Committee on Monday regarding Russian hacking during the 2016 election.

SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE - Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, chairman of the panel's subcommittee on crime and terrorism, and Sheldon Whitehouse, its ranking Democrat, announced that they, too, would investigate Russian attempts to influence the election.

During the hearing, Comey also shot down Trump claims that former President Barack Obama wiretapped Trump Tower in New York City during the presidential campaign.

The full Judiciary Committee is also investigating.

"We do not yet know whether the Russians had the help of USA citizens including people associated with the Trump campaign", Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) said in his opening statement, running through the litany of Trump allies who had some form of contact with Russian officials, from now-Attorney General Jeff Sessions and former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn to former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort to campaign aides J.D. Gordon and Carter Page to longtime Trump confidant Roger Stone.

The Justice Department's disclosure Friday that it had complied with congressional demands for information regarding Trump's wiretapping tweets could allow Comey to avoid questioning by simply saying that the lawmakers already have the information they requested. The Department of Justice has asked me to share with you that the answer is the same.

Mr Trump has called the investigation a "total witch hunt".

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