Tags: Donald Trump | Sean Duffy | CNN

Rep. Duffy, CNN's Cuomo Square Off Over Trump Wiretapping Claims

By    |   Friday, 17 Mar 2017 11:23 AM

Rep. Sean Duffy, during a heated argument with CNN host Chris Cuomo on Friday, said he hasn't seen evidence to back up President Donald Trump's claims that his predecessor wiretapped him, but still maintained that leaks from the administration's communications should not be happening.

"I haven't seen any evidence that would back up the claim, whether it was wiretapping or surveillance of Trump Tower, Donald Trump, or his colleagues," the Wisconsin Republican said on the "New Day" program. "But the administration is coming out and saying we have evidence. I think they should show the evidence. Let's see it."

Normally, Duffy continued, he'd give some more time for such evidence, releasing it would "put the story behind us. That's appropriate."

Cuomo, though, argued that the person who could get the answer most quickly would be Trump himself, and that the president has not abandoned other remarks, including his "birther" accusations against Obama.

Cuomo then asked Duffy if he believes Trump was surveilled.

"Here's the pause I have in answering that question - when Sean Spicer comes out so strongly yesterday and Donald Trump hasn't walked this comment back, it leads me to believe they may have something so I don't want to condemn them yet," Duffy said.

The heads of both the Senate and House intelligence committees this week said they've seen no evidence to back up Trump's claims of wiretapping, but Press Secretary Sean Spicer said the president stands by his accusations, even though evidence has not yet backed his claims.

Duffy said if it were him, he would have made sure he had evidence before making the claims, and would have released it soon after.

At the same time, Gen. Michael Flynn, in the weeks before officially becoming National Security Adviser, had his conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak surveilled, and the contents of that conversation was released, eventually leading to Flynn's decision to step down.

"I have a concern about what our intelligence community is doing with surveillance of Americans and releasing that information publicly," said Duffy. "That's absolutely wrong. That's a little bit different than Donald Trump making a claim that he was surveilled."

And, he continued, it's one thing to be recorded while the Russian contact was being watched, but not to take the content and release it publicly without masking the information and content of the American on the other side of the call.

"I want to give the intelligence community all kinds of power and assets to keep us safe because they do, but when we use information they have on Americans, like with General Flynn, all of a sudden it undermines their credibility," said Duffy. "That's beyond the point of Donald Trump.

"We should all be concerned when the intelligence community is used to go after anybody," said Duffy. "That concerns me. It concerns me that Donald Trump makes points he can't back up. Both of those should concern all of us as Americans. "

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Rep. Sean Duffy, during a heated argument with CNN host Chris Cuomo on Friday, said he hasn't seen evidence to back up President Donald Trump's claims that his predecessor wiretapped him, but still maintained that leaks from the administration's communications should not be...
Sean Duffy, CNN
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2017-23-17
Friday, 17 Mar 2017 11:23 AM
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