Trump again calls Russia commotion ‘a big hoax’

Mark Wilson  Getty Images

Mark Wilson Getty Images

President TrumpDonald John TrumpMeadows threatens to force a vote on Rosenstein impeachment Republican feels "victimized" by Twitter "shadow banning" GOP senators surprised to attend Trump's tariffs announcement MORE, who has sent mixed signals on whether he believes the intelligence committee's assessment on election interference, said on Tuesday that he is "very concerned" that Russian Federation will try to interfere in the 2018 midterm elections to aid Democrats.

Trump also said former campaign adviser Carter Page, the subject of government documents released over the weekend, wasn't a spy or an agent of Russian Federation.

Embattled FBI agent Peter Strzok testified earlier this month on that point, getting into a contentious debate with Republicans over the opening days of the investigation, several months before the Page FISA application would be filed. "It was a fraud and hoax created to target Trump". "An illegal Scam!" Trump's follow up tweet on Sunday morning said. "They should drop the discredited Mueller Witch Hunt now!"

The 412 pages of heavily redacted documents released on Saturday by the FBI included surveillance applications to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and warrants surrounding the investigation into Page.

Even as Trump and his allies claimed vindication from the documents, legal experts said they showed the exact opposite.

Left unmentioned in Sunday's tweets was that the FBI laid out why it was interested in the surveillance of a former Trump campaign adviser, Carter Page: "The FBI believes Page has been the subject of targeted recruitment by the Russian government".

The court issued a warrant to allow the Justice Department to surveil Page, an American oil industry consultant who served as a foreign policy adviser to Trump as he was campaigning for president, in the summer of 2016 based on evidence he was working as a Russian agent.

President Donald Trump also called the documents misleading in a tweet on Sunday morning. "Why didn't he do something about it?"

Worse, the memo alleges, the FISA court was not told that Steele's dossier was funded through a law firm by the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign. "Because it is all a big hoax, that's why". Analysts uncover new Iran hacking group Nunes still hasn't read unredacted FISA documents he requested: DOJ MORE (R-Calif.) called for a ban on electronic voting systems in an interview that aired Thursday on Hill.TV's "Rising".

Trump's latest missive came hours after he asserted without evidence that newly released documents relating to the wiretapping of his onetime campaign adviser Carter Page "confirm with little doubt" that intelligence agencies misled the court that approved the warrant. "He's been very clear that there wasn't any".

"I think anybody that does that, and that's communicating over the web, it's going to be a challenge".

"This is really nothing and just an attempt to distract from the real crimes that are shown in this misleading document", he added.

Multiple news organizations, including The Associated Press, requested that the government release the documents under the Freedom of Information Act.

Still, the Federal Bureau of Investigation told the court, it has found Steele's "previous reporting history with the FBI" to be "reliable" and "credible". Appearing on CNN on Sunday, Page denied the allegations.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller is investigating potential collusion between Russian Federation and Trump's campaign.

The FBI launched its counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign and Russian Federation in July 2016 following an Australian diplomat reporting a conversation with former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos, who told the diplomat that Russian Federation had damaging information on Clinton.

The documents released over the weekend were part of officials' application for a warrant to the secretive foreign intelligence surveillance court.

"They should drop the discredited Mueller Witch Hunt now!" he added.

"The FBI speculates that the identified USA person was likely looking for information that could be used to discredit Candidate #1's campaign", the warrant states, referencing Trump.

The FBI - and South Carolina Republican Rep. Trey Gowdy - have already debunked the claim of FBI spies inside the campaign, saying that FBI confidential sources were not planted inside the Trump campaign.

"I have a different view on this issue than the president and the White House", Rubio said Sunday on CBS' "Face the Nation". "I have not seen one scintilla of evidence that this president colluded, conspired, confederated with Russian Federation". "You have an individual here who has openly bragged about his ties to Russia and Russians".

Trump's Monday morning tweet claims that the opposition research dossier started the Russian Federation investigation - the argument that if the dossier is discredited, so is the FBI's Russian Federation investigation, which has become special counsel Robert Mueller's probe.

White House officials have argued that Page, announced by the president in early 2016 as a foreign policy adviser, played only a minor role in the Trump campaign.

The more than 400-page document released Saturday, which includes the initial October 2016 FISA warrant on Page and three subsequent renewals, is heavily redacted.

Saturday's release of the documents marks the first time in the more than 40-year history of the court that underlying documents for a warrant have been released.

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