FBI Director Comey Confirms Investigation into Possible Collusion Between Russia and Trump Campaign

Monday morning, FBI Director James Comey, in his opening statement before a congressional hearing on the interference of Russian hacking on the United States Presidential Election, stated that “I have been authorized by the Department of Justice to confirm that the FBI, as part of our counterintelligence mission, is investigating the Russian government’s efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election and that includes investigating the nature of any links between individuals associated with the Trump campaign and the Russian government and whether there was any coordination between the campaign and Russia’s efforts.”

The hearing by the the House Intelligence Committee, which lasted about 5 ½ hours was the panel’s first into the Russian government’s efforts to interfere in the 2016 election. The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), urged Comey to reveal when the bureau has information clearing any of its targets, and to do so as quickly as possible. Comey did not answer many questions as he told the committee that an ongoing investigation was a classified event and could not be spoken about in the public setting.

One item that has plagued the Trump administration for the past two weeks is the tweet the President sent out accusing former President Obama of “wiretapping” Trump Tower during the campaign season. FBI Director Comey was asked by Representative Adam Schiff if the President was accurate with such a tweet. “With respect to the president’s tweets,” Comey testified at the House intelligence committee, “I have no information that supports those tweets. We have looked carefully inside the FBI.” Comey also stated that the Justice Department asked him to convey that it also had not been able to uncover any information related to such wiretaps.

As the hearing was taking place, President Trump, was busy defending his administration with a series of tweets. The President tweeted, “James Clapper and others stated that there is no evidence Potus colluded with Russia. This story is FAKE NEWS and everyone knows it!” He also tweeted that “The Democrats made up and pushed the Russian story as an excuse for running a terrible campaign. Big advantage in Electoral College & lost!” The President continued on his path of defending his campaign and administration the same way he did when the “leaks” about former National Security Chief Michael Flynn and the connection to Russia, by stating that the real problem “the FBI and all others should be looking into is the leaking of Classified information. Must find leaker now!”

It did indeed seem that Republicans on the House Committee today were more interested in the fact that laws had been broken and national security was in peril due to leaks to the press. The idea that the public had a right to know there was a possibility of Russia having dealings with members of the Trump campaign seem to be completely lost on them. For example, Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., stressed that the leaks may have been politically motivated to weaken the Trump administration. Rick Wilson, a Republican strategist said of the hearing that “the central contention that Barack Obama wiretapped Donald Trump in Trump Tower was blown out of the water and utterly dismissed.”

There was one development that was testified about that was good news for the administration. The belief that Russia hacked into and changed the vote tallies did not occur at all. There is no proof of that type of infiltration took place.


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