WH says it is 'cooperating' with House Russia probe, despite Hicks stonewalling

The White House said Tuesday it is cooperating with Congress’s Russia investigation, despite communications director Hope HicksHope Charlotte Hicks'Daily Show' trolls Trump over Pruitt's resignation Ex-Fox News exec Bill Shine to join White House Ex-Trump aide pushes for Hope Hicks as chief of staff: Trump will 'listen to women more than men’ MORE’s reported refusal to answer certain questions from the House Intelligence Committee.

"I'm not going to comment on any individual's interactions with the committee,” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said when asked whether the White House directed Hicks not to answer certain questions.

“We are cooperating because, as the president said repeatedly, there is no collusion," Sanders said. 

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Intelligence panel members from both parties said Hicks declined to answer questions about events and conversations that took place since President TrumpDonald John TrumpIran claims it rejected Trump meeting requests 8 times ESPY host jokes Putin was as happy after Trump summit as Ovechkin winning Stanley Cup Russian ambassador: Trump made ‘verbal agreements’ with Putin MORE’s inauguration.

The move frustrated lawmakers who are probing Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and whether the Trump campaign cooperated with the effort.  

Hicks is one of Trump’s longest-serving aides, having worked with the Trump family since before the real estate mogul entered the presidential race, making her testimony valuable to congressional investigators.

Former White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon also declined to answer questions from the House Intelligence Committee about the period after Trump's inauguration and the transition, arguing the White House might want to invoke executive privilege about those discussions.