Published: Tue, May 29, 2018
Worldwide | By Stella Potter

Page: Trumps already campaigning - against the Russia probe

Page: Trumps already campaigning - against the Russia probe

Nunes and other Republicans already eager to discredit special counsel Robert Mueller's Russian Federation investigation used Trump's complaints to obtain the briefing from the Justice Department, whose leaders have tried for months to balance demands from congressional overseers against their stated obligation to protect Mueller's ongoing investigation into ties between the Kremlin and the Trump campaign.

Giuliani said Mueller's office, which has been negotiating the parameters of a potential sit-down, would probably limit questions to those involving whether the campaign colluded with Russian agents and whether Trump tried to obstruct the investigation into those efforts.

Also Friday, Giuliani said special counsel Robert Mueller has narrowed his subject areas from five to two as negotiations continue over whether the president will sit down for an interview in the Russian Federation investigation. Democrats were furious that Emmet Flood, President Trump's lawyer in the Russian Federation investigation, attended both meetings, along with White House Chief of Staff John Kelly. Trump has routinely broken norms about how the White House interacts with the Justice Department, which is supposed to have a degree of independence.

Yet Trump took those facts and twisted them around to claim that the bureau, on the direction of the Obama White House, planted a spy in his campaign in order to help Hillary Clinton. In a tweet Thursday morning he called it "one of the biggest political scandals in USA history". That group includes Schiff, Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senator Mark Warner, vice chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Q Thanks, Sarah. I want to ask about this meeting the Chief of Staff is setting up with lawmakers regarding the documents that they requested about the Russian Federation investigation.

But the fact that this is what Trump does shouldn't distract us from the allegations here: Donald Trump is saying his predecessor as president used the leading law enforcement entity in the country to spy on him because Obama/the "deep state" didn't want someone as unconventional as Trump to be president.


The meeting between Cohen and Viktor Vekselberg, who made his fortune in the energy industry, was an impromptu session arranged by Vekselberg's cousin, Andrew Intrater, a NY investment manager who was also in attendance, according to video footage and at least one person with knowledge of the encounter. The Justice Department official who would be the one to receive any complaints from Giuliani would presumably be Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who appointed Mueller previous year in the wake of Comey's firing and was present for Thursday's briefings.

But Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani cast doubt on that. Even Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., told a reporter that the presence of Flood, who is handling the White House response to the special counsel investigation, was "a bit odd".

Democrats, meanwhile, said that based on the information they had received, the president's claims of a political spy were unsupported.

He then invoked the material compiled by former FBI Director James Comey before he was sacked by the president. The White House says chief of staff John Kelly and lawyer Emmet Flood showed up to give remarks, but did not stay for the briefings. Giuliani acknowledged that the demand is irregular and as "as USA attorney for the Southern District of NY, he never would have turned over all of his investigatory material to a potential target". The request for the latest documents are the latest in a series of subpoenas to the Justice Department for sensitive information.

Trump has been raising suspicions about the federal investigation into his 2016 campaign, alleging that the FBI had been caught in a "major SPY scandal". White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders had said Tuesday that only Nunes and Gowdy would be briefed, because they were the only ones to request information.

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