GOP Members of House Intel: No Evidence of Collusion

Pauline Gross
March 13, 2018

An early overview of the 150-page draft provided by Republicans on Monday said it will report there was evidence of Russian cyber attacks on American political institutions in 2015 and 2016, and Russians' use of social media to sow discord, and that the USA government was slow to respond.

Adam Schiff, the ranking Democrat on the committee, called the investigation "fundamentally incomplete".

But the news that majority party staffers had already drafted a final report so quickly was likely to stun committee Democrats who expected to be consulted in the process. That indictment notes that the effort - which it doesn't explicitly connect to the Russian government - included attempts to boost Trump and disparage his rival, Hillary Clinton.

"We found no evidence of collusion", Mr. Conaway said.

Expect Donald Trump to regularly cite the coming full report from the committee's Republican majority as exoneration, particularly its controversial conclusion that Russian efforts to disrupt the 2016 election were not specifically aimed at helping Mr Trump.

Russians used cyberattacks and social media to sow discord in the U.S.

Nunes continued to churn out explosive but false counter-charges depicting the Russian Federation investigation as a Deep State conspiracy against the completely innocent Trump campaign. But the 150-page report, which has yet to be shared with committee Democrats and must still go through a classification review by the intelligence agencies, has been in the works for weeks. The Democrats also say the committee has failed to pursue vital documents, including financial and communications records held by third-party service providers.

Democrats have accused committee Republicans of shirking the investigation in order to protect the Republican president and his associates, some of whom have pleaded guilty to charges including lying to investigators and conspiring against the United States.

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In addition to subpoenas and witnesses, Democrats have long raised issues about looking into Trump's finances, something the committee had not probed. "If Russians have leverage over the President, GOP has decided that it would rather not know".

President Trump celebrated a GOP intelligence report that showed "no collusion" with Russian Federation by issuing a rare all caps tweet on Monday night.

Panel Republicans have been saying for weeks they were near the end of the interview phase of the probe. Rep. Mike Conaway, the Republican heading the investigation in the wake of Nunes's quasi-recusal, admitted last week, "I don't have any clue who George Nader is".

The committee issued a subpoena to former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon in January, but in his return testimony he still did not answer questions about his time in the White House.

It will also doubtlessly please President Trump, who frequently claims the investigations into his campaign are based on a "hoax" cooked up by vengeful Democrats.

"We think we have the evidence that we need now to come to the conclusion that we came to", Conaway said, adding that if compelling information surfaces down the line, he would consider reopening the probe.

With the close of the House probe, the Capitol Hill spotlight now heats up on the Senate intelligence committee - which has thus far conducted a more unified investigation.

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