President Donald Trump may believe he has the Republican party in the palm of his hand, but they’re still going to be checking out the possibility of any ties that may have existed between him and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Chairman of the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee, Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) spoke with reporters and assured them there were plans for public hearings to be held to investigate Trump’s possible links to Russia; however, he did not give a solid date but said it would be “soon.”
Also in the works is a public hearing held by the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee, which will occur on March 20.
With a Republican-controlled House and Senate, it is questionable, however, how far and deep they will actually investigate considering Republicans have dismissed the idea of a need for a special prosecutor being assigned to the investigation.
Burr has also indicated he has no plan to probe into Trump’s claims of being wiretapped by former President Obama. He cited he felt it was unnecessary.
‘We’ve had sufficient conversations and gotten answers that we find to be satisfactory from the appropriate folks.’
However, that’s all he said. In a way, that seems to be a subtle dismissal of Trump’s accusations considering they are pretty hefty accusations that should and would warrant concern, if they weren’t so outrageous. It just as well could be an attempt to sweep it under the rug, though.
However, the House Intelligence Committee and Senate Judiciary Committee have requested evidence to back up Trump’s claims, which are decorated with tin-foil paranoia. No evidence has been submitted yet. CNBC reported:
‘Democratic Senator Joe Manchin, a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, told reporters after leaving the closed committee meeting on Tuesday that he had still not seen any evidence to back up Trump’s wiretapping claim.’
Of concern, several Trump campaign associates had communications with Russian intelligence, and it’s been concluded that the Russian government DID try to influence the 2016 election – which Trump, of course, won, after praising Putin several times on the campaign trail. The New York Times reported:
‘But the intercepts alarmed American intelligence and law enforcement agencies, in part because of the amount of contact that was occurring while Mr. Trump was speaking glowingly about the Russian president, Vladimir V. Putin. At one point last summer, Mr. Trump said at a campaign event that he hoped Russian intelligence services had stolen Hillary Clinton’s emails and would make them public.
…The call logs and intercepted communications are part of a larger trove of information that the F.B.I. is sifting through as it investigates the links between Mr. Trump’s associates and the Russian government, as well as the hacking of the D.N.C., according to federal law enforcement officials. As part of its inquiry, the F.B.I. has obtained banking and travel records and conducted interviews, the officials said.’
With public hearings looming in the distance, it’s reasonable to hold out hope that a non-partisan effort will be placed in truly investigating the possibility of Trump colluding with Russia to influence the 2016 election. It’s also just as reasonable to expect Republicans to come kicking, dragging, and screaming to the party trying to obstruct it. However, one thing is certain: Trump’s problem with Russia won’t go away, as Democratic officials won’t forget and even some Republican officials won’t forget any time soon.