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House Intelligence Committee votes to release most of its Russia probe testimonies

September 28, 2018

The House Intelligence Committee on Friday voted to publicly release almost all the transcripts of witnesses interviewed over the course of its highly contentious yearlong Russia investigation, with a dump of several thousand pages of testimony expected ahead of November’s midterm elections.

Transcripts from former Trump campaign associates Roger Stone, Corey Lewandowski, as well as his eldest son Donald Trump Jr. and son-in-law Jared Kushner are among 53 interviews to be made public pending a review by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence to scrub the contents of any classified material.

The batch also includes former Obama-era officials National Security Adviser Susan Rice, Attorney General Sally Yates and FBI Director Andrew McCabe.

The committee decided not to release transcripts from its closed-door sessions with former FBI Director James B. Comey, former NSA Director Adm. Mike Rogers and former CIA Director John O. Brennan.

It also held back testimony from Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Florida Democrat and head of the Democratic National Committee when its emails were hacked during the 2016 campaign, in addition to Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, California Republican.

The House probe of the Russian election meddling saga was one of Washington’s most explosive in recent memory and ended last spring. It sparked a series of events that led to the firing of Mr. Comey and the launch of independent counsel Robert Mueller’s own Russia investigation, which has thus far indicted or secured guilty pleas from 32 people and three companies.

The probe has long been divided along partisan lines and while Friday’s vote saw its members come together to approve the release of the transcripts, immediate disagreement broke out over why the panel had omitted certain interviews.

“They’re trying to bury them as long as they can,” said Rep. Adam B. Schiff, the committee’s top Democrat.

The Californian also complained that committee Republicans had dismissed an effort to provide a complete, un-redacted set of the transcripts to Mr. Mueller’s investigation.

“We have suspicions,” Mr. Schiff said, “that people testified before our committee falsely and committed perjury. The special counsel is in the best position to determine on the basis of the additional information he has who might have perjured themselves.”

A spokesperson for Ms. Wasserman Schultz added that the congresswoman had “no objection” to her transcript being released.

Republicans who have long echoed President Trump’s criticism that the entire Russia investigation is “a witch hunt” shrugged off the Democrats’ objections.

“It’s amusing to see the Democrats continuing to promote their never-ending chain of absurd conspiracy theories,” a Republican committee spokesperson told reporters.

Gabriella Muoz contributed to this article.

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