Nunes Met With Source For Trump Monitoring Claim At White House
00:47, Mar 28, 2017
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Nunes has repeatedly refused to divulge the source for claims that communications involving Trump and his staffers were "incidentally collected" by US intelligence agencies.
A spokesperson for Nunes said the congressman "met with his source at the White House grounds in order to have proximity to a secure location where he could view the information provided by the source".
Trump's press secretary, Sean Spicer, refused to rule out Monday whether Nunes' source came from the White House but did say during the daily press briefing that "it doesn't really pass the smell test".
When asked why Nunes couldn't have viewed the documents at the Capitol, his spokesman told Business Insider that because the information "comprised executive branch documents that have not been provided to Congress", the White House grounds "was the best location to safeguard the proper chain of custody and classification of these documents".
After hearing about Nunes' announcement, Trump told reporters he felt "somewhat" vindicated about his charge this month that former President Barack Obama had his Manhattan headquarters wiretapped in the run-up to the presidential election.
Democratic Rep. Jim Himes, a member of the House Intel Committee, told CNN on Monday that the committee has been kept "totally out of the loop" on Nunes' actions and whereabouts.
Any White House staffer can sign off on someone coming to the White House campus. "Any questions regarding who he met with or why he was here should be referred to him", Spicer said at today's press conference, adding later that he was not personally aware who Nunes had met with at the EOB.
"To protect his source, the chairman has repeatedly said he will not reveal any information at all about the source, " Langer said.
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Where exactly Nunes went after taking that call isn't clear, but the Post reported that he did not visit the Director of National Intelligence, FBI or National Security Agency that night.
At a hearing this week of the House Intelligence Committee in Washington D.C., FBI Director James Comey confirmed that there are ongoing investigations into possible collusion between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign.
But here's what anyone trying to follow the twists and turns of this Trump-Russia-wiretapping story is left with: A top Republican congressman and Trump ally was at the White House the day before he released information that appeared to somewhat defend the president on his defenseless wiretapping claims.
In a separate development, Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, a top White House adviser, has volunteered to testify before the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee's investigation into whether Russian Federation attempted to interfere in the November 8 U.S. election, a White House spokesman said.
Nunes did that before informing committee Democrats, angering members of the panel and prompting a closed-door apology from the chairman on Thursday.
On Friday, Nunes backtracked on some of the claims he said earlier in the week regarding the documents he reviewed.
The hearing will also provide valuable insight, with the White House already signaling that securing federal networks will be a priority of the new administration.
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