28 March, 2017
It has been something of a mystery, the whereabouts of House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Devin Nunes on the day before his announcement that he saw information suggesting that communications of then-President-elect Donald Trump and his advisers may have been swept up in surveillance of other foreign nationals.
A spokesperson for Nunes said the congressman "met with his source at the White House grounds in order to have proximity to a secure location where he could view the information provided by the source".
Nunes' committee is looking into a claim made without evidence by the president that the Obama administration wiretapped Trump Tower.
It's unclear why Nunes would have to go to the White House to seek a secure location to view classified material, since his own committee has a secure room in the Capitol where Nunes and his aides review secret documents on a daily basis.
Trump's mention of wiretapping drew attention away from USA intelligence agencies having said that Russian Federation tried to help Trump in the election against Democrat Hillary Clinton by hacking leading Democrats and spreading disinformation.
The chairman then went to the White House to brief the president on his findings, leaving fellow committee members out of the loop. According to both US intelligence agencies and Russian officials, members of the Donald Trump campaign team had regular contact with Russian intelligence officials throughout the campaign.
Nunes, who was part of Trump's transition team, said the monitoring was not connected to Russian Federation and couldn't provide evidence supporting the president's claim that he was personally wiretapped at Trump Tower.
One legal expert told MSNBC - the channel that first reported the allegations based on testimony from an inside source - there could be "legal ramifications" for staff who destroyed crucial evidence relating to ongoing investigations.More news: Tom Brady's stolen Super Bowl jersey recovered far, far away
This game of Where In The World Is Devin Nunes is not helping his case as to whether or not he can conduct an impartial investigation into potential Trump-Russia ties.
Nunes said at a press conference Friday that he expects the National Security Agency to provide him with the documents in question by "early next week" so that the committee can review them.
Nunes told reporters on Wednesday that he had briefed Trump "on the concerns I had about incidental collection and how it relates to President-elect Trump and his transition team and the concerns that I have".
Nunes, as you may know already if you are following this stupid story from Stupidville, then came back to the White House last Wednesday to brief Trump on what Nunes has described as evidence that the names of Trump associates who were incidentally caught up in US surveillance of other targets may have been inappropriately included in intelligence reports.
Alex Jones on Friday apologized to the owner of a Washington, D.C., pizzeria for spreading the fake story a year ago that linked the restaurant to Hillary Clinton's campaign and human trafficking.
The ranking Democrat on the committee, Adam Schiff of California, blasted Nunes for the move, saying it compromised their committee's investigation. "The American people deserve a thorough, bipartisan and independent investigation of Russia's connections with the Trump campaign and their attempts to influence our elections". Schiff is one of several voices on Capitol Hill calling for an independent investigation of Russian intrusion in the 2016 US presidential election.
A former government intelligence official told CNN on Monday that members of Congress, like the general public, must be cleared and escorted into facilities on White House grounds.