Tags: Russia | Lindsey Graham | Trump | Russia | Election

Sen. Graham's Panel Holds Hearing on Wednesday Probing Russia

Image: Sen. Graham's Panel Holds Hearing on Wednesday Probing Russia
Sen. Lindsey Graham (AP)

By    |   Wednesday, 15 Mar 2017 12:09 PM

Although the House and Senate Intelligence committees are conducting the core of the investigation into Russia's interference in the presidential election, Sen. Lindsey Graham's Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism is also playing a role in the probe that could become the most illuminating, Politico reported on Wednesday.

That is because the other committees are headed by staunch supporters of President Donald Trump who many believe will be reticent to produce material harmful to him.

However, Graham, while a Republican, is a fierce critic of the president who is seen as having no qualms about confronting party leaders when necessary and ensuring the public receives a full accounting of what happened, including any possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia.

Graham's committee is holding a public hearing on Wednesday.

What adds to the subcommittee's credibility in the eyes of the public is that Graham apparently has the trust of his Democratic partner on the panel, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, according to Politico.

They both have already made a point of insisting that the Justice Department confirm or refute Trump's accusation that former President Barack Obama wiretapped Trump Tower during the election campaign and warning about consequences if the department continues stonewalling by refusing to provide the information.

However, CNN reported that the two senators did contradict each other before the start of Wednesday's hearing.

Whitehouse said that FBI Director James Comey privately assured him and Graham that he would confirm by Wednesday whether there's an active criminal probe into Trump campaign ties to Russia, but Graham said no such promises were made to them by the FBI director.

Still, both senators agree that they do need answers from the FBI on the matter.

Whitehouse told Politico that although the other committees are carrying out the core of the investigation and have access to intelligence information, the scope of the subcommittee's probe is broader than what most believe considering the FBI's central role in looking into Russian connections. The subcommittee has jurisdiction over the FBI.

Democrats are also generally saying they have much more trust in Graham than the Republicans heading the other panels.

Not only are the other Republicans strong Trump backers but they also agreed to White House requests last month to downplay news reports alleging frequent contacts between Trump associates and Moscow, something that many felt was inappropriate for heads of committee investigating the matter to do.

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Although the House and Senate Intelligence committees are conducting the core of the investigation into Russia's interference in the presidential election, Sen. Lindsey Graham's Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism is also playing a role in the probe...
Lindsey Graham, Trump, Russia, Election
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2017-09-15
Wednesday, 15 Mar 2017 12:09 PM
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