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Tipsheet

Top Dems Claim There's Evidence of Collusion

AP - Alex Brandon

House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA) claimed Sunday that there is “direct evidence” of Russian collusion.

“I think there is direct evidence in the emails from the Russians through their intermediary offering dirt on Hillary Clinton as part of what is described in writing as the Russian government effort to help elect Donald Trump," he said on CBS's "Face the Nation.”

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"They offer that dirt. There is an acceptance of that offer in writing from the president’s son, Don Jr., and there is overt acts and furtherance of that," he added.

"That to me is direct evidence," Schiff said. "But there’s also abundant circumstantial evidence."

Schiff was referring to the 2016 Trump Tower meeting involving Donald Trump Jr. and Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya, who, remember, met with Fusion GPS twice that same day and presented a memo prepared by the Democratic firm.

Sen. Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, argued much the same on Sunday, saying on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that there are "enormous amounts of evidence" linking the Trump campaign and Russia. 

Given "the litany of what we know," Warner said, "the ongoing negotiations about Trump Tower, well into the campaign, I believe the fact that Mr. Trump knew about the dump of the Wikileaks material, the fact that clearly the meeting at Trump Tower meeting which was not described appropriately, in terms of offering dirt," are examples. 

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"To me, that's all evidence," he said. "There’s no one that could factually say there’s not plenty of evidence of collaboration or communications between Trump Organization and Russians."

Warner did say, however, that he was going to defer final judgement until the Senate Intelligence Committee finishes its investigation.

NBC's own report on the Senate investigation noted last month that "after two years and 200 interviews, the Senate Intelligence Committee is approaching the end of its investigation into the 2016 election, having uncovered no direct evidence of a conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia, according to both Democrats and Republicans on the committee."

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