The House Intelligence Committee voted unanimously to release transcripts of 53 interviews with Trump administration officials to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence for review before they are made public, according to Reuters.
Among those interviewed include the president’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., his son-in-law and White House Advisor Jared Kushner, embattled Attorney General Jeff Sessions, former Breitbart editor and Trump adviser Steve Bannon, long-time Trump ally and advisor Roger Stone, current Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale, former aides Corey Lewandowski and Hope Hicks, along with former Obama administration officials like National Security Adviser Susan Rice and U.N. Ambassador Samantha Power.
Before the documents are released the Office of the Director of National Intelligence will comb through the documents and redact any classified or sensitive information.
The Democrats, led by Representative Adam Schiff of California, have long lamented the Republicans member’s of the committee stall tactics in refusing to vote on a potential release of the documents.
“They’re trying to bury them as long as they can,” Schiff told reporters.
“We have suspicions that people testified before our committee falsely and committed perjury, and the special counsel is in the best position to determine on the basis of the additional information he has who might have perjured themselves.”
Schiff also said the Republicans tried to prevent some of the transcripts from being handed over to Special Counsel Robert Mueller, insisting that some of the witnesses appeared to give false testimony.
Jack Langer, a spokesman for Republicans Representative Devin Nunes of California, the panel’s chairman, told reporters “it’s amusing the see the Democrats continuing to promote their never-ending chain of absurd conspiracy theories.”
House intel votes to release almost all panel transcripts from Russia probe https://t.co/nMU0lud6kf— Washington Post (@washingtonpost) September 28, 2018
Democrats also attempted unsuccessfully to get other transcripts released, specifically those of a number of agency heads like California’s Republican Representative Dana Rohrabacher, who may be the most openly pro-Russia lawmaker in Congress and Florida Democratic Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who headed the Democratic National Committee when it was hacked during the 2016 election.
Both sides of the House Intelligence Committee have been battling with one another for some time now, bitterly divided down partisan sides of the aisle.
Democrats were outraged when the Republican majority opted to end the committee’s investigation into President Trump’s 2016 campaign ties to Russia, citing what they saw as a lack of evidence that anyone close to Trump colluded with Russia and latching on to the President’s now famous “witch hunt” claim.