On Monday evening, Anderson Cooper 360 began with developing news about Democrat Adam Schiff calling for Republican Devin Nunes to recuse himself from the investigation over Russia.
“Earlier, Congressman Nunes confirmed he was on the White House grounds the day before he made that surprise announcement last week about evidence he says suggests that communications with then President-Elect Trump and his advisers may have been swept up in surveillance of other foreign nationals,” Cooper said, adding that Nunes defended his decision to go to Trump directly with the so-called evidence.
Congressional Correspondent Phil Mattingly then appeared by sattelite to discuss the issue. He said it had been a crazy day in Washington and revealed that Schiff’s asking Nunes to step down is surprising to people in both parties. Then, Anderson showed an interview between Mattingly and Schiff.
“First it was the meeting at the White House, and later, returning to the White House with whatever information he got at the White House,” Schiff said, adding that Nunes can’t be doing these types of things as a member of Trump’s transition team.
“A source in the committee tells me that the main concern about the latest developments actually came from FBI Director James Comey, who doesn’t want the hearing on Russia to go forward until the Intelligence Committee gets everything together,” Mattingly soon explained to Anderson Cooper.
According to Bloomberg, Nunes has no plans to step down now. He claims that he ended up meeting his source on the White House grounds because it was the most convenient secure location with a computer connected to the system that included the reports, which are only distributed within the executive branch. Bloomberg notes that Nunes has a history of cultivating independent sources inside the intelligence community.
For more than a month, Nunes had allegedly already been hearing details about intelligence reports that include private information on the Trump transition team. Nunes is the only member of his committee to actually read these documents.
Anderson Cooper and his guests were not about to let Nunes off so easily. Senior White House Correspondent Jim Acosta told Cooper that it’s quite strange that Nunes appeared on the White House lawn one day before revealing information that was helpful to the president.
Acosta noted that Nunes and the White House staff are refusing to reveal how Nunes got on the grounds of the White House for this undisclosed meeting. He noted that White House visitor laws are not available to the public under Trump. However, they were available when Barack Obama was president.
Anderson Cooper wanted to know why President Trump couldn’t get the information directly from Nunes’ source, who was also at the White House, instead of having Nunes act as a go-between. Acosta stressed that something just doesn’t add up.
Justice Correspondent Evan Perez, who appeared by satellite, explained to Cooper that the leading theory among law enforcement officials is that Nunes’ secret report has something to do with information U.S. intelligence collected on foreign leaders and their staff.
Perez noted that Trump went against protocol by making some foreign calls without the State Department from the Trump tower. He thinks the NSA could have picked up some of these conversations.
“If he would have gone through the proper protocol, less of this would have taken place,” Evan Perez continued.
There are some who think Evan Nunes did nothing wrong, especially because people don’t know what he learned from the secret reports yet. However, there are also many who are outraged about Nunes’ actions. Do you think Nunes should resign himself from the investigation on Russia? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.
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