Republicans shut down the House Intelligence Committee’s contentious Russia probe Thursday, despite new revelations that Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign may have benefited from the exploitation of personal information from millions of Facebook users. In a closed-door meeting, the panel voted over Democrats’ objections to approve and release a Republican-written final report, said Michael Conaway, a Texas Republican who led the panel’s investigation. “House Intelligence Committee votes to release final report,” Trump said in a Twitter posting Friday morning in his first comment on the vote. “FINDINGS: (1) No evidence provided of Collusion between Trump Campaign & Russia. (2) The Obama Administrations Post election response was insufficient. (3) Clapper provided inconsistent testimony on media contacts.”
A summary of the committee’s 44 conclusions, published after the vote, criticized the Obama administration’s reaction to mounting evidence of Russia’s meddling efforts before the 2016 election and largely dismissed suggestions of wrongdoing by Trump family members and associates, including former Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions, now the attorney general.
“The Committee found no evidence that meetings between Trump associates — including Jeff Sessions — and official representatives of the Russian government — including Ambassador Kislyak — reflected collusion, coordination or conspiracy with the Russian government,” according to the summary.