Senate Intel says House GOP leaked senator's texts to Fox News: report

The Senate Intelligence Committee has found that a Republican member of the House Intelligence Committee leaked to Fox News text messages sent by Sen. Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerSenate Republicans muscle through rules for Trump trial Hillicon Valley: Apple, Barr clash over Pensacola shooter's phone | Senate bill would boost Huawei alternatives | DHS orders agencies to fix Microsoft vulnerability | Chrome to phase out tracking cookies Senators offer bill to create alternatives to Huawei in 5G tech MORE (D-Va.), according to a new report.

Two officials told The New York Times that members of the Senate committee were briefed on the conclusions made by the committee leaders, Sen. Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrJuan Williams: Counting the votes to remove Trump Hillicon Valley: Apple, Barr clash over Pensacola shooter's phone | Senate bill would boost Huawei alternatives | DHS orders agencies to fix Microsoft vulnerability | Chrome to phase out tracking cookies Senators offer bill to create alternatives to Huawei in 5G tech MORE (R-N.C.) and Warner.

The Times reports the two men demanded a meeting with Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanWarren now also knocking Biden on Social Security Biden alleges Sanders campaign 'doctored video' to attack him on Social Security record Sanders campaign responds to Biden doctored video claims: Biden should 'stop trying to doctor' public record MORE (R-Wis.) to address the leak and inform him of their findings. During the meeting, they also raised concerns about the House committee and its leader, Rep. Devin NunesDevin Gerald NunesDemocratic lawmaker dismisses GOP lawsuit threat: 'Take your letter and shove it' House Democrats release second batch of Parnas materials Democratic lawmaker says Nunes threatened to sue him over criticism MORE (R-Calif.), according to the newspaper.

ADVERTISEMENT

Last month, Fox News published a series of texts between Warner and lobbyist Adam Waldman, whose firm reportedly has ties to former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonThe Hill's Morning Report - Trump trial begins with clashes, concessions Trump on Clinton's Sanders comments: 'She's the one that people don't like' Hillary Clinton tears open wound with her attack on Sanders MORE.

Warner was seeking to establish contact with Christopher Steele, the author of the controversial dossier linking President TrumpDonald John TrumpRouhani says Iran will never seek nuclear weapons Trump downplays seriousness of injuries in Iran attack after US soldiers treated for concussions Trump says Bloomberg is 'wasting his money' on 2020 campaign MORE to Russia, as part of the Senate panel's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

The Virginia Democrat exchanged text messages with Waldman, who did work as a lobbyist for a Russian oligarch, about making contact with Steele, according to the Fox News report.

At the time, Fox News reported the texts were obtained from “a Republican source.”

According to the Times, Waldman originally submitted the texts to the Senate committee as part of its investigation. A staffer for Nunes requested in January that copies of the messages also be shared with the House committee.

The documents published by Fox News included a label reading “CONFIDENTIAL: Produced to USSSCI on a Confidential Basis,” which refers to the Senate Intelligence Committee, otherwise known as the United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.

However, a source told the Times that the document contains other markings showing it came from the House committee. According to the newspaper, a copy of the messages provided to the Senate committee contained page numbers, while the copy given to the House committee did not contain page numbers.

Burr later denied the Times report, telling a CNN reporter that his panel had not concluded that House Republicans were behind the leak. He also denied raising concerns about Nunes during his meeting with Ryan.

A lawyer for Waldman also came to the conclusion that the House committee leaked the messages and complained to Nunes about the leak, according to the Times.

A spokesman for Nunes did not deny that the committee had leaked the messages in a statement to the Times.

“The New York Times, a prominent purveyor of leaks, is highlighting anonymous sources leaking information that accuses Republicans of leaking information,” spokesman Jack Langer told the Times. “I’m not sure if this coverage could possibly get more absurd.”

Trump at the time cited the Fox News report in a Twitter attack on Warner, saying it was “all tied into Crooked Hillary.”

Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioApple under pressure to unlock Pensacola shooter's phones Senators offer bill to create alternatives to Huawei in 5G tech Surging Sanders draws fresh scrutiny ahead of debate MORE (R-Fla.), another member of the Senate committee, dismissed the Fox report at the time, saying Warner had disclosed his contacts to the committee and that they had “zero impact” on its ongoing investigation.

Updated: 12:51 p.m.