GOP congressman to Trump: Apologize for wiretap claim

Mar 20, 2017, 00:04
GOP congressman to Trump: Apologize for wiretap claim

Obama flatly rejected it, but the White House refusal to back down has kept the issue alive.

Trump's aides had earlier attempted to quell British anger over the claims, based on a Fox News report cited by his press secretary, Sean Spicer, in a briefing Thursday, by explaining the comment to the United Kingdom government.

MARCH 12: Senior White House adviser Kellyanne Conway suggests in an interview with the Bergen County Record newspaper that the monitoring may have been conducted through television sets or "microwaves that turn into cameras". FBI Director James Comey will testify, and he will be asked whether Trump Tower was wiretapped.

May's spokesman argued this pact precluded the kind of spying alleged by Napolitano, saying: "I would add as a matter of fact that under the "Five Eyes" intelligence agreement, we can not use each other's capabilities to circumvent the law".

The British government said the White House has promised it won't repeat the allegation.

"I think we're going to have negotiation", he told Fox News' Tucker Carlson. Press secretary Sean Spicer said Monday that Trump did not mean literally that Obama personally wiretapped him.

"As far as wiretapping, I guess, by this past administration, at least we have something in common perhaps", Trump said.

"We've made clear to the administration that these claims are ridiculous and they should be ignored and we've received assurances that these allegations will not be repeated", the spokesman told reporters.

The White House had cited the report by a Fox News analyst as it sought to defend President Donald Trump's charge that Obama's administration wiretapped him during the 2016 election.

The claim is prompting growing bipartisan agreement that there's no evidence to back up the claim and mounting pressure to retract the statement.

The U.S. Department of Justice today announced that it has "complied" with a request for information related to unsubstantiated accusations made by President Trump that he was "wiretapped" during the 2016 presidential election. The Republican president offered no evidence for the allegation, which an Obama spokesman has said was "simply false". Rep. Charlie Dent, R-Pa., called the accusation against Britain "inexplicable" and the accusation against Obama unfounded.

Hurd, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, said he has not yet seen the DOJ report that was sent to Congress on the wiretapping allegation, but was not surprised by its apparent contents.

Tim Farron, leader of the UK Liberal Democrat party - the junior coalition partner in the last British government - described the White House claim as "shameful" and said it risked harming United States and UK security.

However, the Western diplomat confirmed that Spicer was very apologetic when confronted by Darroch at a White House dinner on Thursday.

The White House has yet to provide any evidence for the president's statements, but has since claimed he was referring to surveillance in general terms and not specifically to the tapping of phones. "They. should be ignored", the spokesperson said.

When making the original allegations, Napolitano implied the decision to use GCHQ had been made to keep "American fingerprints" off the spying.

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