Russia probe complicating House hearing on threats facing US: report

Russia probe complicating House hearing on threats facing US: report
© Greg Nash

The investigations into alleged ties between the Trump campaign and Russia's election meddling has complicated the House Intelligence Committee's annual hearing on the U.S. global threat assessment, Democratic sources tell Reuters.

The sources told the news organization that Republican leaders have not moved to schedule the hearing. 

The hearing would involve key leaders of the intelligence community, who would most likely be asked by Democrats about "material omissions of fact" that the FBI found in the classified memo released by Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee earlier this month, which alleges surveillance abuses at the Justice Department. 

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None of the intelligence community directors have received invitations to the hearing, an unnamed U.S. official revealed to Reuters.

The reported dispute on the House committee is the latest sign of a divide over the intelligence community's conclusion that Russia meddled in the 2016 presidential election. 

President TrumpDonald John TrumpShocking summit with Putin caps off Trump’s turbulent Europe trip GOP lambasts Trump over performance in Helsinki Trump stuns the world at Putin summit MORE has repeatedly called the congressional probes and the investigation by special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE into possible collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign a “witch hunt.”

The president says there was no collusion between Russia and his campaign.

The report comes days after FBI Director Christopher Wray, CIA Director Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoRyan: 'The president must appreciate that Russia is not our ally' Former CIA director Brennan urges Pompeo, Bolton, Kelly to resign following 'treasonous' Trump-Putin summit Mnuchin says US will consider Iran oil sanctions waivers: report MORE, and Director of National Intelligence Dan CoatsDaniel (Dan) Ray CoatsTrump stuns the world at Putin summit Trump: ‘Phony witch hunt’ drove wedge between US, Russia Press: Whose side is Trump on? MORE presented the 2018 Worldwide Threat Assessment before the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Coats told that committee that there “should be no doubt” that Russia believes it was successful in influencing the 2016 election, and that it is aiming to similarly target the 2018 midterm elections. 

Wray revealed to the Senate committee that Trump has not directed him to stop the Russian efforts targeting this year's contests.