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Tag: House Intelligence Committee

House Intelligence Committee Subpoenas FBI, DOJ for Dossier Documents

Donald TrumpBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The House Intelligence Committee has subpoenaed the Justice Department and FBI for records related to the salacious, unverified dossier on President Trump.

Neither agency turned over the records by the Sept. 1 deadline, prompting the committee to issue two more subpoenas to FBI Director Christopher Wray and Attorney General Jeff Sessions to explain why the records weren’t disclosed, the Washington Examiner reports

“We got nothing,” said committee member Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., who is taking a leading role in the Russia investigation. “The witnesses have not been produced and the documents have not been produced.”

Rep. Adam B. Schiff, D-Calif., said during an appearance on MSNBC that Republicans are trying to “discredit” the author of the dossier “rather than looking into how many of the allegations he wrote were true.”

“What we should be most concerned about is whether those sources of the information in the report are true, not in discrediting the author of that report,” Schiff said.

The FBI said it needs more time to determine whether disclosing the documents will interfere with the investigation of special counsel Robert Mueller.

Kushner Returns for Another Round of Questions from Congressional Committee

Jared Kushner

Jared Kushner

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

After insisting he had “nothing to hide” and acknowledged four meetings with Russians, President Trump’s son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner will return for second day of closed-door interviews with lawmakers on the House Intelligence Committee.

Kushner spent two hours Monday answering questions from Senate investigators about his contacts with Russian officials before and after Trump was elected.

After the meeting, Kushner declared he did nothing wrong.

“I did not collude with Russia nor do I know of anyone else in the campaign who did so. I had no improper contacts,” Kushner told reporters during a prepared statement. “And I have been fully transparent in providing all requested information.”

Kushner released an 11-page statement hours before the Senate meeting. 

Ex-Homeland Security Director Says Politics Prevented Disclosure of Russian Meddling

Former Homeland Security Director Jeh Johnson testifies before the House Intelligence Committee.

Former Homeland Security Director Jeh Johnson testifies before the House Intelligence Committee.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

In what has become typical fashion, President Trump blamed the Obama administration for failing to “stop”  Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

“By the way, if Russia was working so hard on the 2016 Election, it all took place during Obama Admin. Why didn’t they stop them?” Trump tweeted at 9:22 a.m. Thursday.

Truth is, the FBI and other intelligence agencies were trying to stop Russia and had found evidence in August that Kremlin-backed hackers targeted electoral systems in 21 states, officials confirmed Wednesday.

Testifying before the House Intelligence Committee on Wednesday, former Homeland Security Director Jeh Johnson said the Obama administration didn’t immediately reveal Russia’s interference to avoid an appearance of partisanship.

“We were very concerned that we would not be perceived as taking sides in the election, injecting ourselves into a very heated campaign,” Johnson told the committee.

When asked what took the Obama administration so long to disclose the allegations of Russian interference, Johnson cited the need to protect intelligence sources and methods.

Testifying before the House Intelligence Committee on Wednesday, former Homeland Security Director Jeh Johnson said the Obama administration didn’t immediately reveal Russia’s interference to avoid an appearance of partisanship. The public disclosure finally came Oct. 7, when Johnson and James R. Clapper the then-director of national intelligence, said in a joint statement that Russia was involved in cyber “threats and disclosures … intended to interfere with the U.S. Election process.” They also said a Russian company attempted to break in to state voter registration databases, The L.A. Times reported. 

Johnson said the Oct. 7 statement “did not get the attention it deserved” because it was morphed in media coverage later that day by the leak of Trump making crude comments about women on a 2005 “Access Hollywood” tape.

Trump Doubles Down on Wiretapping Claims Even As Republicans Express Doubt

Trump Tower

Trump Tower

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Although President Trump has provided no evidence that the Obama administration wiretapped his offices during the 2016 presidential campaign, he insisted again Wednesday that the claims are true.

On Monday, FBI Director James Comey is scheduled to testify before a congressional panel to discuss what evidence, if any, has been found to back up Trump’s claims.

“Wiretap covers a lot of different things,” Trump told Fox News Channel’s Tucker Carlson last night.

But even Republicans are getting frustrated with the unfounded claims, and leaders of the House Intelligence Committee said Wednesday that they have found no evidence to confirm President Obama wiretapped Trump Tower during the election.

“We don’t have any evidence that that took place,” said U.S. Rep. Devin Nunes, a California Republican and the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. “In fact, I don’t believe — in the last week … people we’ve talked to — I don’t think there was an actual tap of Trump Tower,” the Boston Herald reports

Justice Department Requests More Time on Wiretapping Evidence

US CapitolBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Justice Department said it needs more time to provide information on President Trump’s wiretapping claims.

The House Intelligence Committee has asked for wiretapping applications, orders and warrants involving President Trump or his associates.

The Justice Department called the committee “to ask for additional time to review the request in compliance with the governing legal authorities and to determine what if any responsive documents may exist,” the Washington Post reports. 

The committee wants the records by Monday’s deadline.

President Trump has yet to provide a shred of evidence that Obama ordered wiretapping of the Trump campaign.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer walked back some of the claims.

“If you look at the president’s tweet, he said very clearly, quote, ‘wire tapping’ — in quotes,” Spicer said, gesturing with his fingers to symbolize quotes. “There’s been substantial discussion in several reports. ... There’s been reports in the New York Times and the BBC and other outlets about other aspects of surveillance that have occurred. The president was very clear in his tweet that it was, you know, ‘wiretapping’ — that spans a whole host of surveillance types of options.”

FBI Director Asked to Testify during House Panel’s Investigation of Trump-Russia Ties

US CapitolBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

As the House Intelligence Committee prepares for it first public hearing on the investigation into alleged ties between Russia and Donald Trump’s campaign team, lawmakers have asked FBI Director James Comey to testify.

Also invited to attend the March 20 hearing were National Security Agency chief Mike Rogers, former director of national intelligence James Clapper, former CIA director John Brennan, former acting attorney general Sally Yates and two executives from CrowdStrike Inc., a cybersecurity company, the Boston Globe reports. 

The Senate Intelligence Committee is conducting a separate investigation into the Russia allegations. 

FBI Agents Association Says Rep. Mike Rogers “Never Forgot the Men and Women of the Bureau”

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The FBI always seemed to appreciate having one of its own in Congress.

So when Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich), the House Intelligence Committee Chairman, announced he was retiring to host a nationally syndicated radio show, the FBI Agents Association (FBIAA) wanted to show some appreciation.

President Reynaldo Tariche issued a statement on Monday, saying:

“The FBIAA and our 12,000 active duty and retired Agents thank Chairman Rogers for his many years of public service and for his support of Agents over the years. Agents knew that they had a strong voice in Congress thanks to Chairman Rogers.

“He started his career as an FBI Special Agent and though he left the FBI in 1995 to start his political career, he never forgot the men and women of the Bureau and has been a champion for Agents since his election to Congress. He will be missed and we wish him well in his new career in the private sector.”

NSA Leader: Government Surveillance Helped Prevent More than 50 Terrorist Attacks

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Top security officials said Tuesday they disrupted more than 50 terrorist plots using government surveillance, The New York Times reports.

Trying to fend off fierce criticism about the recent disclosure of government surveillance, national security officers told the House Intelligence Committee that investigators used the private information to prevent terrorist attacks. 

One thwarted attack included a plan to bomb the New York Stock Exchange, and another involved a group of California men convinced of sending money to Islamic extremists in Somalia, The Times reported.

At the rare public oversight hearing, Gen. Keith B. Alexander, head of the NSA, said surveillance provided invaluable information.

“In the 12 years since the attacks on Sept. 11, we have lived in relative safety and security as a nation,” General Alexander said. “That security is a direct result of the intelligence community’s quiet efforts to better connect the dots and learn from the mistakes that permitted those attacks to occur on 9/11.”