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Published: Wednesday, March 15, 2017 @ 7:58 AM
The top Republican and Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee said today that their review of Russian interference in the 2016 elections has found no evidence that the Obama Administration used a wiretap to monitor associates of President Trump during last year's campaign, contrary to a public charge made earlier this month by the President.
"We don't have any evidence that took place," said House Intelligence chairman Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA). "I don't think there was an actual tap of Trump Tower."
"I've seen no evidence that supports the claim that President Trump made that his predecessor had wiretapped his associates at Trump Tower," said Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the top Democrat on the House Intelligence panel.
"There's no daylight between us on the fact that neither one of us has seen any evidence to support what the President tweeted," Schiff said, with Nunes standing next to him at a joint news conference.
In their meeting with reporters, Nunes and Schiff announced that FBI Director James Comey would testify next Monday, March 20, in an open hearing about the Russia-election investigation, but it wasn't clear how much light would be shed publicly on both the probe, and the accusation of surveillance made by Mr. Trump.
Nunes and Schiff also sent a letter asking for the names of any Americans who were part of "incidental collection" by U.S. Intelligence - in other words, they called people on the phone who were being wiretapped - like the Russian Ambassador to the United States.
For Nunes, the questions start with Mr. Trump's former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, and how reports of his phone calls with the Russian Ambassador became public.
"I have been very clearly about my concern about number one, the incident collection on General Flynn, how that was put into a product, how it was unmasked, how it was leaked to the public," Nunes said.
"Several crimes have been committed here," Nunes declared.