Schiff announces expanded scope of House Intel Russia probe

Posted February 07, 2019

But Schiff's statement suggests not only that the committee will resume a collusion investigation, but that the probe will focus on whether Russians sought to influence any Trump associates. But that session has been postponed until February 28, Schiff said.

Schiff, who chairs the Intelligence Committee, plans to resume the panel's investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation.

Adam Schiff announced Wednesday the House Intelligence Committee will expand its investigation of President Donald Trump to include five separate areas of inquiry.

A day after the Republican president warned Democrats against "ridiculous partisan investigations" in his annual State of the Union address, Schiff said they would not be intimidated.

However, that wasn't the only move against Trump made by the Democratic-controlled committee Wednesday.

Schiff told reporters following a Wednesday meeting by the House Intelligence Committee, which he now chairs, that in accordance with promises made after the November 2018 election, the investigation into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election would be reopened.

The panel has previously released select transcripts to the Special Counsel, including that of Trump's longtime friend Roger Stone and Trump's former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen. Hours after the meeting was pushed back, a document was filed, and then deleted, under seal in the criminal case against Cohen brought by the special counsel Robert Mueller's office. He has pleaded not guilty. He acknowledged that he misled lawmakers by saying he had abandoned the project in January 2016 when he actually continued pursuing it for months after that. Stone is also charged with obstructing the House probe by encouraging one of his associates, NY radio host Randy Credico, to refuse to testify before the House panel in an effort to hide Stone's false statements. He noted the Office of the Director of National Intelligence was still reviewing classified material the committee's former chairman, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA), requested permission to publish last September.

Last year, both Republicans and Democrats voted to release all of the transcript materials to the public, pending a review by the intelligence community.

Republican members of the intelligence committee had hoped to release to the public transcripts from its unclassified interviews - which account for the vast majority - but the motion was voted down, said Representative Michael Conaway, R, who ran the committee's GOP-led Russian Federation probe.

Among the transcripts that would be released would be of interviews with Trump's eldest son, Donald Trump Jr.; his son-in-law, Jared Kushner; his longtime spokeswoman, Hope Hicks; and his former bodyguard Keith Schiller.

"In other words, prosecutors don't indict people for perjury without an official transcript", she said.

Democrats also opposed a Republican motion at the meeting Wednesday to subpoena several witnesses. But Schiff stressed today that while Democrats wanted to accommodate GOP requests, they would not begin firing off subpoenas before potential witnesses were given a chance to appear voluntarily.

A Republican aide said that witness list included FBI and justice department officials involved in the Russian Federation investigation and others who could shed more light on research by former British spy Christopher Steele.