Offbeat Russia favored Trump in 2016, Senate panel says, breaking with House GOP

20:31  16 may  2018
20:31  16 may  2018 Source:

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  Russia favored Trump in 2016, Senate panel says, breaking with House GOP © Provided by WP Company LLC d/b/a The Washington Post

The Senate Intelligence Committee has determined that the intelligence community was correct in assessing that Russia meddled in the 2016 U.S. election with the aim of helping then-candidate Donald Trump, contradicting findings House Republicans reached last month.

“Our staff concluded that the [intelligence community’s] conclusions were accurate and on point,” the panel’s vice chairman, Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-Va.), said Wednesday in a joint statement with Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), its chairman. “The Russian effort was extensive, sophisticated, and ordered by President Putin himself for the purpose of helping Donald Trump and hurting Hillary Clinton,” Warner continued.

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The Senate Intelligence Committee reportedly concluded that Republicans serving on their counterpart panel in the House were behind a leak involving texts between a The leak came shortly after Nunes pushed for the release of a GOP -penned memo accusing top brass at the FBI of anti- Trump bias.

But that last determination — that Russia intended to help Trump — sets up a clash within the GOP over which record of events is most accurate, a dispute that could complicate the party’s messaging surrounding the Russia investigations as it heads into the 2018 election season. While the House Republicans’ report also concurred with the bulk of the intelligence community’s findings about Russian meddling, it accused officials of not following their own best practices in determining that Moscow hoped Trump would win.

Trump has taken umbrage at the intelligence community’s determination that the Kremlin favored his candidacy over that of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The president cheered the House Intelligence Committee’s findings and report on Twitter, claiming it vindicated him by finding there was no evidence of collusion or coordination with Russia.

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GOP report finds no collusion between Trump and Russia in 2016 . Share via e-mail. The House committee’s announcement will surely shift the spotlight across Capitol Hill to the Senate Intelligence Committee, where senators have been able to proceed largely in private and with comparative comity.

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The Senate intelligence panel has yet to weigh in on the collusion allegations, a subject that will be left to its final report. But Burr and Warner have been dropping hints for days that their panel’s interim findings on the intelligence community would depart from those of the House Intelligence Committee Republicans. House Democrats also roundly disagreed with those findings.

“I’m not sure that the House was required to substantiate every conclusion with facts,” Burr told reporters last week, when asked whether the Senate Intelligence Committee would also find fault with the intelligence community’s assessment. He promised the Senate panel would “have the facts to show for” its conclusions.

“Everyone that we’ve ever had testify still stands by the full findings of the ICA,” Warner said Monday, referring to the intelligence community’s assessment. “We’ve had all the Obama officials, we’ve had all the Trump officials. Every person.”

The committee’s review is not yet complete: On Wednesday, panel members huddled behind closed doors with former intelligence chiefs to discuss their impressions and conclusions. Former Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr., former CIA director John Brennan, and former National Security Agency director Adm. Mike Rogers were in attendance. Former FBI director James B. Comey also was invited.

Trump doesn't invite key Dems to signing ceremony on their bill .
President Trump did not invite three Senate Democrats who co-authored legislation loosening banking rules to a White House signing ceremony on Thursday, according to aides for the senators. Two of the senators not invited, Sens. Jon Tester (Mont.) and Joe Donnelly (Ind.), are in hotly contested Senate races in this fall's midterm elections, the results of which could help determine the Senate majority. Trump has also been in a personal feud with Tester, who he blamed for the withdrawal of his nominee to lead the Veterans Affairs Department.

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