White House Officials Helped Give Nunes Intelligence Reports

"I've never seen behavior this freakish on the part of the chairman", Pelosi told TODAY about Rep. Devon Nunes, who was reportedly briefed by White House officials about inadvertent surveillance on President Trump but failed to share the information with other members of his House Intelligence Committee. He said he got the information from an intelligence official, not a White House staffer. Ellis works for Eisenberg. Seats are allocated by the White House Correspondents Association, but any credentialed member of the media can attend.

Cohen-Watnick is a former Defense Intelligence Agency official who was originally brought to the White House by Michael Flynn, the former national security adviser. It's not known whether the president has been briefed on the material - Spicer said he would "look into" it.

The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the intelligence and to avoid angering Cohen-Watnick and Ellis.

Cohen-Watnick was almost fired earlier in the month at the request of National Security Advisor Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster, but was overruled by US President Donald Trump after he appealed to White House advisers Stephen Bannon and Jared Kushner, Trump's Jewish son-in-law.

The top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee said Thursday he's accepted an invitation from the White House to view what may be the same classified documents shown last week to chairman Devin Nunes about government surveillance.

According to Nunes, he received a phone call from a source the night before and then rushed to meet the person on the grounds of the White House.

The episode of Nunes's nighttime meeting with the officials has aroused suspicion among Democrats that he colluded with the White House in order to provide backup for Trump's earlier claim that his presidential campaign was wiretapped by the Obama administration.


The source says Cohen-Watnick did not alert Nunes to the documents.

Mr. Nunes has also been faulted by his congressional colleagues for sharing the information with President Trump before consulting with other members of the intelligence committee.

Democratic sources on the House intelligence committee said Wednesday that staff were briefed on the alleged source of Nunes' information Wednesday, but could not independently confirm their identities. Press Secretary Sean Spicer stated that a letter was sent to lawmakers Thursday.

The question-and-answer session can last for up to 90 minutes, though the length of the daily briefing varies.

Mr. Hayden's assessment on Friday, meanwhile, followed criticism of Mr. Nunes' handling of the situation this week from some high-level Republican lawmakers in the Senate, which is conducting its own Russian Federation probe. Congress shouldn't vote to reauthorize the surveillance laws in the fall, he argues, but "sadly, the merits of this case are undermined by how the White House and Nunes have made it". Typically, the American is a suspect in a crime, is in danger or has to be named to explain the context of the report, said Fox News.

The communications of the Trump team were collected during surveillance of foreign targets, Fox News said.

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