House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes says the investigation of possible Russian Federation ties to President Trump's campaign will "move forward" despite calls for him to recuse himself.
The top Democrat on the House intelligence committee, Adam Schiff, confirmed during a news conference later Thursday that he was invited to the White House to view intelligence documents, but in a public reply to the White House he expressed "profound concern" with the way the materials were being made available to the committee.
The White House did not immediately respond to a request for what the time the letter was sent.
The Times reported Thursday that Ezra Cohen-Watnick, according to several current U.S. officials, was one of two sources who provided Nunes with the intelligence.
The New York Times reported that two White House officials - including an aide whose job was recently saved by President Donald Trump - secretly helped Nunes examine intelligence information last week. The witnesses will include Jared Kushner, Trump's son-in-law and a top White House adviser, who met with both the Russian ambassador and a top Russian banker during the transition period.
Nunes hasn't said much about his sourcing, but he has certainly suggested the only reason that he was on the White House grounds is because the information happened to be there and that it wasn't something that was fed to him by parties interested in confirming Trump's evidence-free claim that he was under surveillance during the 2016 election. Cohen-Watnick worked for Flynn when he was in charge of the Defense Intelligence Agency.
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The House panel's work has been deeply, and perhaps irreparably, undermined by Nunes' apparent coordination with the White House.
The report did not make clear exactly what the pair did to assist Nunes.
Schiff got today's White House invite simultaneous with Sean Spicer's press briefing at which the White House press secretary announced the offer was going out to the chairs and ranking members of the House and Senate intel committees.
He questioned why the materials came to the White House by way of Nunes rather than by a more direct route. The intelligence showed, he said, that Trump was "monitored".
However, Chairman Devin Nunes, a California Republican, cancelled the hearing March 24 without giving any explanation, saying that he first wanted to hear from Comey and the director of the National Security Agency, Admiral Michael Rogers, in a closed-door setting where they could answer questions they had declined to discuss in public.
"We had staff-to-staff discussions with their congressional affairs people", Nunes spokesman Jack Langer said.