Senate has uncovered no direct evidence of conspiracy between Trump campaign and Russia!!
WASHINGTON — 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.
But investigators disagree along party lines when it comes to the implications of a pattern of contacts they have documented between Trump associates and Russians — contacts that occurred before, during and after Russian intelligence operatives were seeking to help Donald Trump by leaking hacked Democratic emails and attacking his opponent, Hillary Clinton, on social media.
"If we write a report based upon the facts that we have, then we don't have anything that would suggest there was collusion by the Trump campaign and Russia," said Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, in an interview with CBS News last week.
Burr was careful to note that more facts may yet be uncovered, but he also made clear that the investigation was nearing an end.
"We know we're getting to the bottom of the barrel because there're not new questions that we're searching for answers to," Burr said.
On Tuesday, Burr doubled down, telling NBC News, "There is no factual evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia."
Sen. Mark Warner, D.-Va., ranking member of the committee, told reporters in the Capitol Tuesday that he disagrees with the way Burr characterized the evidence about collusion, but he declined to offer his own assessment.
"I'm not going to get into any conclusions I have," he said, before adding that "there's never been a campaign in American history ... that people affiliated with the campaign had as many ties with Russia as the Trump campaign did."
Democratic Senate investigators who spoke to NBC News on condition of anonymity did not dispute Burr's characterizations, but said they lacked context.
"We were never going to find a contract signed in blood saying, 'Hey Vlad, we're going to collude,'" one Democratic aide said.
The series of contacts between Trump's associates, his campaign officials, his children and various Russians suggest a campaign willing to accept help from a foreign adversary, the Democrats say.
By many counts, Trump and his associates had more than 100 contacts with Russians before the January 2017 presidential inauguration.
Read the rest HERE!