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Senate Russia Probe: Partisan Struggles, No Full-Time Staff

Image: Senate Russia Probe: Partisan Struggles, No Full-Time Staff
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By    |   Monday, 24 Apr 2017 02:43 PM

Doubts have arisen about the Senate Intelligence Committee's investigation into Russia's election interference, according to The Daily Beast.

No interviews with individuals key to possible ties between President Donald Trump and Russia have been interviewed, and no staff members are focused on the probe full time, three officials told the Daily Beast.

"It's either a real investigation or it's not. You have to have an approved investigative guide. You have to make it formal. Can you have a credible investigation with only seven part-time staffers, doing everything in secret?" one official said.

"The biggest obstacle now for a serious investigation into Trump-Russia ties is dedicated resources for staffing," one source with committee ties told the Daily Beast.

Also, the seven staffers lack experience as either prosecutors or legislators. "I don't see how you can do this without trained investigators and prosecutors. I think you need to have expertise on the Intel side and on the prosecution side. You would ideally need someone who knows how to do a counterintelligence operation," according to Scott Horton, an attorney focused on corruption with a Soviet Union specialization.

"I don't think they're deploying the resources that are necessary to do a real investigation," Horton said.

The committee has gained access for five aides — three Republicans, two Democrats — to review the U.S. intelligence community's raw data. They have also interviewed intelligence analysts who concluded that Russia did interfere in the 2016 election.

The committee has not questioned anyone over suspicion of colluding with Russia. They have not requested emails, memos, or phone records of the Trump campaign or set a deadline to get that information. The panel's Republican Chairman Richard Burr will not sign letters from Democrats to call for that information, according to Yahoo News.

Sen. Ron Wyden last month sent a letter to the Republican and Democrat committee leaders, asking them to probe for financial ties between Russia, Trump, and Trump's associates. The letter appeared to imply that the committee was not already doing so, according to the Daily Beast report.

Members of the committee itself are looking for efforts to ramp up. "I would like to see this moving more quickly," said Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) , according to Yahoo.

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Doubts have arisen about the Senate Intelligence Committee's investigation into Russia's election interference, according to The Daily Beast.
senate, russia, probe, partisan, struggles, staff
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2017-43-24
Monday, 24 Apr 2017 02:43 PM
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