Justice Department to show lawmakers classified materials on FBI source

Alex Wong  Getty Images North America

Alex Wong Getty Images North America

In a break with President Donald Trump, House Speaker Paul Ryan said Wednesday that he agrees there is no evidence that the Federal Bureau of Investigation planted a "spy" in Trump's 2016 presidential campaign in an effort to hurt his chances at the polls.

Ryan, R-Wis., described as "accurate" an initial assessment offered last week by Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., chairman of the House Oversight Committee, who told Fox News that "the Federal Bureau of Investigation did exactly what my fellow citizens would want them to do" in investigating information alleging certain Trump campaign advisers had suspicious ties to Russian Federation.

Lame duck House Speaker Paul Ryan on Wednesday disputed President Donald Trump's claims that he had the constitutional authority to pardon himself.

A senior Justice Department official said the briefing will allow lawmakers "to review certain supporting documents that were made available during the prior briefing".

House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes served the department with a subpoena for the documents, threatening to hold Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in contempt of Congress on several occasions if he did not turn them over. Democrats argue that the Republicans weren't trying to find collusion, charging that they ignored numerous leads and failed to subpoena documents and witnesses key to getting to the bottom of the Russian Federation investigation. "I'll leave it at that".

Jordan does not agree, saying Tuesday that Gowdy and others are mistaken to "take the FBI's word for it in a briefing that they are doing everything right".

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"I don't know the technical answer to that question", he said when asked at a Capitol Hill press conference about Trump's and his lawyer's assertions about absolute executive power. Still, Ryan said Wednesday that there is "more digging to do". Then another Spygate rejection burst forth from GOP Representative Tom Rooney, who sits on the House Intelligence Committee.

"It would have been helpful if we'd gotten this information earlier". "Speaker Ryan needs to step up, he needs to join us in a call for a second special counsel, and for goodness sakes, stop defending the FBI's collection of intelligence on the Trump campaign when they refuse to give us the documents to show whether or not they broke the law". "But what we were asking for and what we require and what we expect were the corroborating documents of that oral briefing".

"President Trump is not above the law", Smith said.

Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, who chairs the Judiciary Committee, told CNN, "If I were president of the United States and I had a lawyer that said I could pardon myself, I think I would hire a new lawyer".

"They are a group of 13 highly partisan Democrats that make up the Mueller team, excluding him, (who) are trying very, very hard to frame him, to get him in trouble, when he hasn't done anything wrong", Giuliani said at a question-and-answer session at the Globes capital markets conference in Tel Aviv.

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