House Panel Votes to Send Russia Probe Transcripts to Mueller

Hugh Fox
February 7, 2019

Trump told reporters at the White House Wednesday that Schiff is "just a political hack who's trying to build a name for himself" and called his committee's probe "presidential harassment".

Schiff has indicated that he will re-open parts of the committee probe, which Republicans closed last March, concluding there was no evidence of conspiracy or collusion between Russian Federation and Trump's presidential campaign. Devin Nunes, Schiff's Republican counterpart, called on the committee Wednesday to make public all unclassified interview transcripts from the investigation.

Republicans ended the committee's investigation in April 2018, announcing there was no evidence that members of the Trump campaign colluded with Russian government operatives to influence the election.

Cohen, a longtime ally and fixer for Trump, was scheduled to testify at a closed-door hearing before the panel on Friday. Last month, Cohen cited threats from Trump for postponing testimony before an open hearing of the House of Representatives Oversight Committee set for February 7.

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"Our job involves making sure that the policy of the United States is being driven by the national interest - not by any financial entanglement, financial leverage or other form of compromise", he said told reporters on Wednesday.

The intelligence committee also voted Wednesday to send Mueller the transcripts from the panel's earlier Russian Federation investigation.

Since he testified in 2017, Cohen has turned on the president, cooperating with Mueller's probe and a separate investigation in NY.

"For the last two years, the Republican majority has essentially been missing in action when it comes being a coequal branch of government", Schiff said today, promising that Democrats are "not going to be intimidated or threatened" by Trump's warnings against the Democrat-led investigations.

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The panel voted in closed session to release the documents and conducted more procedural business, during its first meeting under the leadership of its new Committee Chairman, Democrat Adam Schiff.

Stone pleaded not guilty to charges last month that he lied to the House panel about his discussions during the 2016 election about WikiLeaks, the anti-secrecy group that released thousands of emails stolen from Democrats. It is possible that Mueller could have gained access to the documents through the intelligence agencies that are reviewing them.

Mueller requested Stone's interview transcript previous year and the panel voted to release it in December, ahead of the January charges. Among those whose transcripts would be sent are Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, the president's son-in-law, and former Trump strategist Stephen Bannon.

Democrats also opposed a Republican motion at the meeting Wednesday to subpoena several witnesses.

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In addition to moving forward with continuing the Russian Federation probe, the Committee voted to release transcripts for private Committee testimony that took place during the last Congress.

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