Ryan says no evidence of Trump campaign-Russia collusion

House Speaker Paul Ryan on Thursday said there was "no evidence of collusion" between Donald Trump's campaign and Rus...

Posted: Jun 7, 2018 4:30 PM
Updated: Jun 7, 2018 4:30 PM

House Speaker Paul Ryan on Thursday said there was "no evidence of collusion" between Donald Trump's campaign and Russia, siding with the President on collusion one day after he broke with Trump about claims the FBI put spies in his campaign.

"In all of this, in any of this, there has been no evidence that there is any collusion between the Trump campaign and ... President Trump and Russia," Ryan said at his weekly news conference. "Let's just make that really clear. There is no evidence of collusion."

Ryan's comments align him with the House Intelligence Committee Republican report on the Russia investigation, in which the GOP lawmakers said they uncovered no evidence of collusion between Trump's team and Russia, just some bad judgment. Democrats argue that the Republicans weren't trying to find collusion, charging that they ignored numerous leads and failed to subpoena documents and witnesses key to getting to the bottom of the Russia investigation.

Ryan has been a frequent target of Democratic criticism for his role in aiding House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes' in his fight with the Justice Department for classified documents, including the latest dispute over documents related to an confidential source who spoke to Trump advisers as part of the FBI's counterintelligence investigation.

But Ryan on Wednesday broke with the President and his conservative allies who have claimed the FBI was spying on his campaign, when he said he agreed with South Carolina GOP Rep. Trey Gowdy's assessment that the FBI's use of the confidential source was proper.

Ryan's comments angered conservatives like Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida, a vocal critic of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation who suggested Ryan's comments prompted fresh talk of removing Ryan as speaker.

"You know I run in the more conservative circles of the House and I have never up until this point heard a single person talk about removing Speaker Ryan from the speakership," Gaetz told Fox Business Network in an interview Wednesday.

"Today, for the first time, I was hearing colleagues say, 'Well, you know, if Speaker Ryan won't stand with us in this fight over the essentials of our democracy, not weaponizing an intelligence community against a presidential campaign, do we need to look at other choices?'"

Gaetz said replacing Ryan before he retires "remains a lingering question and you're starting to see more frustrations bubble to the top because we need that leadership."

But he distanced himself from the comments late Wednesday night.

"Let me be clear. I support Paul Ryan. I'm glad he's our speaker. But I strongly disagree with him on this issue, which he discussed on TV first. (Sad!) #TeamRyan," he tweeted.

Without evidence, Trump has accused the FBI under then-President Barack Obama's administration of embedding an informant in his campaign as a spy, referring to the matter as "spygate."

Gowdy, Ryan and other congressional leaders were briefed last month on the FBI's use of a confidential source that interacted with Trump's campaign two years ago as the Justice Department began investigating Russian meddling.

The Justice Department is making classified documents available to the same congressional leaders for review next week. A source briefed on the meeting said the materials were brought to last month's briefing but were left on the table untouched.

After the briefing, Gowdy told told Fox News he's "even more convinced that the FBI did exactly what my fellow citizens would want them to do" in its handling of the Russia investigation and possible links to Trump's campaign.

Gaetz on Wednesday told Fox Business Network he found Ryan's defense of the FBI "deeply frustrating" and slammed his conference's leader as a "defender of the deep state."

Gaetz is one of a dozen or so House Republicans pushing for a second special counsel to investigate the FBI and Justice Department's handling of its probe into Trump's campaign and Russia.

Ryan announced in April he won't seek re-election and will retire from Congress after this year.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

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Hennepin12150785
Ramsey4805226
Stearns234519
Dakota228690
Anoka2180107
Nobles16626
Olmsted110115
Washington106940
Mower9452
Rice8357
Scott7004
Clay58538
Kandiyohi5701
Wright4565
Blue Earth4532
Todd4002
Carver3641
Lyon3092
Sherburne3075
Freeborn2900
Steele2281
Watonwan2160
Benton2143
St. Louis17715
Martin1635
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Goodhue1298
Winona12215
Crow Wing10612
Pine1030
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Wilkin203
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Cass152
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Koochiching141
Roseau130
Marshall120
Grant100
Lincoln100
Pope100
Mahnomen81
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Hubbard60
Lake60
Traverse50
Lac qui Parle40
Stevens40
Red Lake30
Kittson20
Cook10
Lake of the Woods00

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

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Confirmed Cases: 30975

Reported Deaths: 720
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Polk6464179
Woodbury321544
Black Hawk225258
Buena Vista171111
Johnson12648
Dallas126329
Linn126282
Marshall104319
Scott77810
Story7623
Pottawattamie72111
Wapello70630
Dubuque68322
Crawford6772
Muscatine62944
Sioux4630
Tama46229
Wright3801
Louisa36013
Jasper32317
Plymouth3165
Warren2731
Dickinson2642
Washington2369
Webster2132
Hamilton1871
Cerro Gordo1561
Boone1481
Clay1330
Clarke1312
Allamakee1284
Mahaska11517
Shelby1140
Clinton1071
Poweshiek1048
Carroll961
Pocahontas941
Bremer926
Franklin890
Des Moines882
Henry863
Emmet850
Cedar821
Taylor790
Monona760
Cherokee751
Floyd722
Hardin700
Marion700
Guthrie664
Benton651
Sac630
Jefferson590
Osceola590
Jones560
Humboldt541
Butler532
Harrison530
Lee532
Hancock510
Iowa510
Buchanan501
Monroe506
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Madison452
Clayton433
Lyon410
Palo Alto410
Davis391
Winneshiek380
Grundy370
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Mills360
Howard350
Kossuth340
Lucas304
Greene290
Jackson290
Chickasaw280
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Union270
Ida230
Cass220
Appanoose203
Keokuk201
Page200
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Audubon161
Unassigned160
Adair150
Ringgold150
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