Republicans Are Ending House Russia Probe Over Democrats' Objections

Frederick Owens
March 13, 2018

Committee member Rep. Mike Conaway is expected to announce Monday that the body will now begin writing its final report on its findings, CNN reported.

Conaway said the panel would release a "separate report on the analytical integrity" of the intelligence community's conclusions in the weeks ahead - though he said the panel agreed with the determination that Russian Federation used "active measures" to affect the 2016 election season. "We've interviewed everyone we think we need to interview".

Republicans also highlighted what they call the real problems within the Russian Federation matter, including what they say was the abuse of surveillance powers by national security officials and what they called "problematic contacts between senior intelligence community officials and the media".

In recent weeks, the committee's internal dysfunction grew even wider as national headlines followed Democrats and Republicans issuing dueling memos over alleged Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation abuses at the nation's secret surveillance court when securing warrants to spy on Trump campaign personnel.

Reports that the committee may be wrapping up the probe follow comments by Republicans who said the investigation had just about run its course. And he denied that any of the initial conclusions by the GOP members represented an effort to undermine the work of the probe by special counsel Robert Mueller.

The committee has interviewed more than four dozen witnesses so far, the last being former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski.

House Republicans have barely even pretended to investigate Russia's efforts to interfere in the 2016 elections, and now even the bare pretense is coming to an end.

Democrats erupted in anger after they were blindsided by the summary Republican officials released Monday.

Conway's announcement enraged Democrats, who have warned their Republican colleagues against ending the investigation.

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Republicans are expected to assert that collusion did not occur, according to CNN.

The committee's Russian Federation investigation included interviews with 73 witnesses and a review of roughly 300,000 pages of documents, Conaway said. Russian Federation denies meddling in the 2016 US campaign. This contradicts earlier findings from USA intelligence agencies.

"After more than a year, the Committee has finished its Russian Federation investigation and will now work on completing our report".

Conaway accused Democrats of seeking to prolong the probe ahead of the mid-term elections.

"The majority was not willing to pursue the facts wherever they would lead".

The Senate Intelligence Committee and the Senate Judiciary Committee are expected to continue hearing witnesses in the Russian Federation probe.

The announcement is likely to further inflame the partisanship that has consumed the panel nearly since the start of the inquiry on January 10, 2017.

The committee has drafted a 150-page report of initial findings that will be released March 13.

"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", Conaway said in a statement.

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