RUSSIA PROBE GOP-led House panel clears Trump campaign


Associated Press

WASHINGTON

The Republican-led House intelligence committee Friday released a lengthy report concluding it found no evidence that Donald Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia in the 2016 presidential campaign, drawing praise from the president and rebuttals from Democrats.

The report caps an investigation that began with the promise of bipartisanship but quickly transformed into an acrimonious battle between Democrats and Republicans over Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election and whether there were any connections with the Trump campaign.

Trump quickly claimed vindication Friday, calling the report “totally conclusive, strong, powerful, many things.”

“No collusion, which I knew anyway. No coordination, no nothing. It’s a witch hunt, that’s all it is,” he told reporters in the Oval Office.

But the committee’s Republicans didn’t let the Trump campaign completely off the hook. They specifically cited the Trump campaign for “poor judgment” in taking a June 2016 meeting in Trump Tower that was described in emails to Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., as part of a Russian government effort to aide his father’s presidential bid. The report also dubbed the campaign’s praise of WikiLeaks “objectionable.”

The House investigation is the first of several inquiries probing Russian election interference to conclude. A separate investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller continues, as do probes led by the Senate intelligence and judiciary committees.

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