Members of the Democratic Party warned that they may pull out their support for an investigation into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election in the United States, the New York Times reported.
"I’m not going to be part of a dog-and-pony show that is not a serious effort to do an investigation because this is really serious," Democrat Representative Jackie Speier told the newspaper.
According to her, "under certain circumstances," all nine Democrats involved in the investigation panel would immediately withdraw their support.
Earlier, Trump wrote on Twitter that Obama tapped his phones in Trump Tower in October during the "very sacred election process."
How low has President Obama gone to tapp my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergate. Bad (or sick) guy!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 4 марта 2017 г.
Trump did not provide any evidence to his accusations though.
According to Dem. Representative Jim Himes, Democrats may leave the committee "if the moment requires" but they are "certainly not there yet." He was echoed by party fellow Mike Quigley who said: "It’s a big jump to pull out of this investigation, no matter how bad it is."
Speaking with the newspaper, Representative Adam B. Schiff, the committee’s top Democrat, doubted that the panel could conduct a "credible investigation," resulting in a "single, bipartisan report."
At the same time, according to the New York Times, Democrats understand that the inquiry would provide a chance to take a closer look at connections between the Trump team and Russian officials. Moreover, they are already bracing for a campaign to subpoena witnesses and documents, including Trump’s tax returns.
Summing up, certain supporters of former Democrat presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton are still calling for an independent investigation into the matter, but many Democrats understand that an inquiry by a panel is the best option possible.
As a result, a special committee was established, including representatives of the Republican and Democratic Parties. The panel chaired by Devin Nunes held its first public session on March 20.
CNN citing sources also reported that the secret counterintelligence division at the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is in charge of an independent inquiry in Moscow’s alleged attempts to influence the 2016 election. According to the report, 15-20 agents are assigned to the probe. It is 5-10 fewer than were assigned to the Hillary Clinton email investigation.
Russian officials have called the US hacking allegations against Moscow absurd, noting the allegations are intended to deflect US public opinion from revelations of corruption and other pressing domestic issues.
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