Giuliani Accuses Mueller of Leading `Rigged' Probe Into Trump

Giuliani Accuses Mueller of Leading `Rigged' Probe Into Trump

Giuliani Accuses Mueller of Leading `Rigged' Probe Into Trump

Trump canceled that meeting on Thursday, but it may still take place.

There were two other late additions to the list - White House chief of staff John Kelly and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

U.S. Sen. Mark Warner contended that "Mr. Giuliani could not be more wrong".

The lawmakers were briefed by Rosenstein, FBI Director Chris Wray and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats.

But the briefings themselves over the source became the latest political confrontation in the Russian Federation investigation after the White House initially only had invited Republicans to the Justice Department briefing on the confidential source.

In recent days, he has been zeroing in on - and at times embellishing - reports that a longtime USA government informant approached members of his campaign during the 2016 presidential election in a possible bid to glean intelligence on Russian efforts to sway the election. The president intensified his attacks this week, calling it "spygate" and tweeting Thursday that it was "Starting to look like one of the biggest political scandals in USA history".

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Haines, who had previously served as deputy Central Intelligence Agency director under John Brennan, was charged by the White House in the summer of 2016 with overseeing the USA response to the Russian election attack. They brought documents but did not share them, and made several remarks about the importance of protecting intelligence sources and methods. Moderate Republicans were distressed that Trump politicized intelligence by holding classified briefings that excluded Democrats.

It was not immediately clear whether the Justice Department had provided information that would allay conservatives' concerns, particularly those of House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., who has pushed vigorously for information about the FBI's source.

Trump's "spy" comments marked his latest attack on the FBI at a time when he feels mounting pressure from the ongoing investigation by Mueller, appointed previous year by the Justice Department, into potential collusion between his 2016 campaign and Russian Federation and whether he has committed obstruction of justice.

Nunes and Schiff were seen heading into both meetings. According to the USA official and another person briefed on the Capitol Hill meeting, Nunes did not speak at all during the briefing. Ryan did not attend the second meeting, citing a scheduling conflict.

The kernel of factual basis there was that some people associated with the Trump campaign had been recorded as part of routine surveillance on foreign officials, much as in this case, some campaign members were contacted pursuant to an investigation into Russian election meddling.

The first briefing, which lasted about an hour at the Justice Department, went to Nunes, Ryan, House Oversight Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., and Intelligence Committee Ranking Democrat Adam Schiff of California. Then they went to a separate 2 p.m. briefing on Capitol Hill with the bipartisan "Gang of Eight", the Republican and Democratic leaders of the House and Senate and the Intelligence Committees.

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At Trump's request, the Justice Department asked its inspector general on Sunday to explore the allegation of political spying.

Senior Justice Department and intelligence officials met with the lawmakers Thursday in a bid to end the standoff between House Republicans and the Justice Department over a confidential intelligence source in the Russian Federation investigation.

If the FBI was using Halper as an informant at the time, it raises the possibility that the investigation was politically motivated.

It remains unclear what, if any, spying was done.

The FBI's use of the confidential source has roiled Washington for the past week, as President Donald Trump has repeatedly cast the man as a spy implanted in his campaign for political purposes.

It was also filed hours after a court filing in the case for George Papadopoulos - the Trump campaign adviser who pleaded guilty for lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation about Russian contacts - asked the judge to begin the sentencing process. Mueller later took over the investigation when he was appointed in May 2017.

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