Republican joins calls for Devin Nunes to recuse himself from Russian Federation probe

Carla Harmon
April 1, 2017

Sen. Lindsey Graham, a SC conservative, stopped short of saying whether Rep. Devin Nunes should recuse himself from the probe.

"I believe that the Chairman should recuse himself from any further involvement in the Russian Federation investigation, as well as any involvement in oversight of matters pertaining to any incidental collection of the Trump transition, as he was also a key member of the transition team", Schiff said. Tuesday, Rep. Walter Jones, R-North Carolina, broke ranks and said Nunes should recuse himself.

The Trump administration forcefully denied it tried to bar former acting Attorney General Sally Yates from testifying at a House Intelligence Committee hearing on its Russian Federation investigation, after reports suggested it may have tried to do so.

"We are aware that former AG Yates meant to speak on these matters, and sought permission to testify from the White House", Schiff said Tuesday in a statement.

"We are aware that former AG Yates meant to speak on these matters, and sought permission from the White House to testify", Rep. Democrats said the cancellations went further, including a regular meeting later in the week.

The controversy over the canceled public hearing and the unscheduled Comey-Rogers followup session increased demands for Nunes to step down from the House investigation.

His critics have many answers to that question.

"I can't tell if we're going to learn anything from Nunes", Colbert said on Tuesday's "Late Show".

President Donald Trump fired Yates after she told Justice Department lawyers not to defend Trump's first executive order restricting travel from seven Muslim-majority countries.

Monday, Schiff led the calls for his recusal.

"The chairman and I have worked together well for several years and I take this step with the knowledge of the solemn responsibility we have on the Intelligence Committee to provide oversight on all intelligence matters", Schiff said in a statement on his request for Nunes to stand down.

He faces criticism for not telling Schiff about the White House visit.

Democrats charge that Nunes has aligned himself too closely with the White House to conduct an independent probe.

"Why would I?" Nunes asked. "You guys need to go ask them why these things are being said [about a conflict of interest]". Pressed about concerns from Democrats, he added, "That sounds like their problem".

"I nearly think it's impossible that this wasn't reported up", Kristol said. "If Adam had ever seen my apartment, he would know there was not enough room to fit the whole committee in there", he said.

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