The House Intelligence Committee has announced it is shutting down its investigation (R-Texas) into if Russia interfered with the 2016 presidential election and if President Donald Trump’s former campaign team members colluded with Russians to help get him elected.
Are we one step closer to no longer hearing about the Russian collusion probe being reported on repeatedly by the media?
The committee will no longer be interviewing any more witnesses and will be handling over a final report to Democrats this week.
“We found no evidence of collusion, and so we found perhaps some bad judgment, inappropriate meetings,” said Rep. Mike Conaway, “We found no evidence of any collusion of anything people were actually doing, other than taking a meeting they shouldn’t have taken or just inadvertently being in the same building.”
Although this investigation is coming to a close, there are two others in Washington still looking into the Russian collusion allegations.
President Donald Trump has repeatedly denied that there were any instances of collusion from his campaign team.
73 interviews were conducted and 3,000 documents were reviewed in the investigation, along with the nine hearings and briefings that were held.
Democrats are already claiming that this investigation wasn’t sufficient enough.
“There are a number of steps that I think any credible investigator would say. These need to be done and we still hope that they will be,” said Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., last week after he learned that the witness portion of the investigation was coming to a close.
Schiff then went as far to say that the conclusion of the probe was a “tragic milestone” and rejected the GOP’s findings.
“By ending its oversight role in the only authorized investigation in the House, the Majority has placed the interests of protecting the President over protecting the country, and history will judge its actions harshly,” wrote Schiff. “If the Russians do have leverage over the President of the United States, the Majority has simply decided it would rather not know.”
Conway believes the investigation, which was launched in January of 2017, has run its appropriate course and said it’s time to shut it down.
“We are confident that we have thoroughly investigated the agreed-upon parameters, and developed reliable initial findings and recommendations,” said Conway.
“THE HOUSE INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE HAS, AFTER A 14 MONTH LONG IN-DEPTH INVESTIGATION, FOUND NO EVIDENCE OF COLLUSION OR COORDINATION BETWEEN THE TRUMP CAMPAIGN AND RUSSIA TO INFLUENCE THE 2016 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION,” tweeted Trump on Monday.
The GOP expects that the democrats will be making “extensive changes” to the committee’s 150-page draft report.
Democrats and GOP also disagree over the role that Hillary Clinton’s campaign played in acquiring anti-Trump research that allegedly helped to inspired the investigations.
“We will say that there was an attempt to use foreign sources with respect to the Clinton campaign,” said Conaway. “It was clear that there was — at least Steele and however much he talked and didn’t talk to Russians — that’s foreigners and that information was paid for by the [Democratic National Committee] and the Clinton campaign. I don’t have any direct evidence that they knew about it.”
The House Intelligence Committee is planning to disclose some of the investigation findings to the American public prior to the 2018 elections.
“We will now be moving into the next phase of this investigation, working with the minority on a report to give the American people answers to the questions they’ve been asking for over a year,” said Conaway. “With the 2018 primary elections already underway, and just 238 days until the mid-term elections in November, it’s important that we give the American people the information they need to arm themselves against Russian attempts to influence our elections.”
AshLee Strong, a spokeswoman for House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.,) expressed similar sentiments.
“After more than a year investigating Russia’s actions in the 2016 election, we are well into the primary season for the 2018 elections, and experts are warning that we need to safeguard against further interference,” said Strong. “That’s what this next phase is about, and we hope Democrats will join us in seeing this through.”
The committee will also be continuing its investigation into the controversial GOP memo that outlined alleged surveillance abuses by the FBI and Justice Department– another point of contention between Democrats and Republicans.
“Even while they close down the Russia investigation, they plan to continue trying to put our own government on trial,” said Schiff. “This is a great service to the President, and a profound disservice to the country.”
The GOP argues that the public deserves to know more about this matter as well.
Author’s note: Like we thought from the beginning, there was no collusion! But Democrats will continue to harp on this issue for a while, especially since it gives them “leverage” in the upcoming mid-term elections. So Mueller’s probe will likely linger on, but if anyone is honest there, they will conclude the same thing.
Editor’s note: Will Mueller finally give up looking for witches and ghosts that were never there? Probably not…