The top two lawmakers on the House intelligence committee said Sunday that documents the Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation delivered late last week offered no evidence that the Obama administration had wiretapped Trump Tower, but the panel's ranking Democrat says the material offers circumstantial evidence that American citizens colluded with Russians in Moscow's efforts to interfere in the presidential election.
Nunes told "Fox News Sunday" that he still has no evidence that Trump Tower was wiretapped by the Obama administration.
"I was surprised to see Director Clapper say that because I don't think you can make that claim as categorically as he did", Schiff said.
"The Department of Justice has complied with the request from leaders of the House and Senate Intelligence Committees and Judiciary Committees seeking information related to surveillance during the 2016 election", department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores said in a statement Friday. "Up to speed, everything I have up to this morning, no evidence of collusion", Mr Nunes said. He said that there is "circumstantial evidence" of collusion.
While disagreeing with Mr Trump's wiretap assertions, Mr Nunes agreed with concerns that the Republican president had expressed about alleged leaks in the probe.
Part of the issue here is that Trump seems to use the term "wiretap" in a generic sense when referring to any type of surveillance, while the Committee, the DOJ, and members of the intelligence community use a much more exact definition.
The only crime his committee knows was committed, Nunes said, was the leaking of former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn's conversations with the Russian ambassador to the United States.
Lawmakers had sent letters to the Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation demanding answers to a range of sensitive questions, including whether there was evidence Trump Tower was "wiretapped" by the Obama administration, as the president suggested last week.
The head of a U.S. congressional panel investigating allegations of Russian interference with the nation's election says there is no evidence of such accusations.
"And we have two high ranking Obama intelligence officers who have disputed that claim". Chicago time as President Donald Trump deplores as "fake news" stories suggesting potential links between people in the Trump orbit and Russian Federation.
The Senate Intelligence Committee has announced a public hearing for March 30. "We're looking for answers to a number of questions", he said. But I do think it's important that we look at the broader context here.
The President also mentioned the Obama administration's monitoring of German Chancellor Angela Merkel's cellphone, a bruising incident in German-US relations.
"I actually said this a couple of weeks ago that it was - you know, the president doesn't go and physically wiretapped something", he said. "And he needs to put an end to this". She said she supported the increased spending for veterans and the military.
"The perpetrator was Russia, and there are serious questions about ties" between Trump associates and Russian officials, he said.
"I would like the American people to walk away understanding that we were attacked", Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-California, told ABC News.