Tags: NSA/Surveillance | Russia | Leon Panetta | Devin Nunes | investigation | intelligence

Panetta on Nunes, Russia Probe: Credibility or Sideshow?

Image: Panetta on Nunes, Russia Probe: Credibility or Sideshow?
Former CIA Director Leon Panetta (Getty Images/Andrew Harrer)

By    |   Tuesday, 28 Mar 2017 07:09 PM

Former CIA Director Leon Panetta said Tuesday that House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes needed to make "a basic decision" on his panel's investigation into Russia's activities during the presidential election.

"Is he going to run a credible investigation into this issue, or whether he is just going to do a political sideshow," Panetta, who also served as defense secretary under former President Barack Obama, told Wolf Blitzer on CNN. "That's the choice, and that will determine whether or not the House really does conduct a credible investigation."

Nunes, the California Republican, dismissed calls Tuesday by Democrats after he admitted Monday he secretly visited the White House last week before announcing he had evidence Trump associates' communications had been swept up in incidental collection by spy agencies.

Panetta also slammed Nunes for not sharing the data with ranking committee Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff, also of California, before his announcement.

"What he did was wander off, went to the White House, got secret information there," he told Blitzer. "He went to the president and then briefed the press without telling his ranking member what he was doing.

"That's major breach in the ability of both of them to trust one another.

"Whether it can be repaired or not, I don't know," Panetta said. "But it cannot work.

"You cannot have a credible investigation without a close working relationship between the chairman and the ranking member."

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Former CIA Director Leon Panetta said Tuesday that House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes needed to make "a basic decision" on his panel's investigation into Russia's activities during the presidential election.
Leon Panetta, Devin Nunes, investigation, intelligence
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2017-09-28
Tuesday, 28 Mar 2017 07:09 PM
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