Donald Trump: Adam Schiff 'Political Hack' Focused on 'Presidential Harassment'

Charlene Craig
February 7, 2019

Trump dismissed Schiff's announcement on Wednesday by calling the Democrat a "political hack" who is "trying to build a name for himself".

The Republican majority in the last Congress ended the probe in March, stating that they agreed with the intelligence community's assessment of Russia's campaign influence operation "except with respect to Putin's supposed preference for candidate Trump". The committee did, however, supply Mueller with transcripts when requested, such as former Trump adviser Roger Stone's, for which he is now indicted by Mueller, charged that he lied in those interviews. 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.

Schiff said the investigation, which could involve additional congressional committees, would "allow us to investigate any credible allegation that financial interests or other interests are driving decision-making of the President or anyone in the administration".

Republican members of the intelligence committee had hoped to release to the public transcripts from its unclassified interviews - which account for the vast majority - but the motion was voted down, said Representative Michael Conaway, R, who ran the committee's GOP-led Russian Federation probe.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller has been investigating Russia's role in the election and whether there was any collusion or obstruction of justice by the Trump team.

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Cohen, who is expected to begin a three-year prison sentence next month for lying to Congress and committing financial crimes, was due to appear before the House Intelligence panel for a closed-door interview this week.

Schiff has long pledged under his control, the House Intelligence Committee would aggressively investigate Trump's campaign activities, as well as his finances.

Trump said that Schiff had "no basis" for his investigation, noting that he felt unfairly targeted by Democrats.

Cohen was scheduled to speak with the committee on Thursday.

Schiff said the panel hopes to make all of the transcripts public by May or June, after they are vetted for classified material.

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Mueller requested Stone's interview transcript past year and the panel voted to release it in December, ahead of the January charges.

It is unclear if Mueller has since requested any other transcripts, or if he has already seen any of them. There are dozens of other transcripts of interviews with former Obama administration officials and Trump associates.

Republicans on the panel issued a joint statement just before the meeting saying that the intelligence agencies' ongoing review is "an unacceptable delay" and Democrats should vote to publish all of the unclassified transcripts immediately.

Schiff also laid out five "interconnected lines of inquiry" that Democrats feel ranking member Devin Nunes of California did not adequately pursue when he was chairman last Congress.

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