The tweet from President Trump that began the ball rolling was several weeks ago. The House Intelligence Committee are prepared to take him seriously and to dig into his allegations, giving him until midnight on Monday to produce the evidence that prompted his tweet.
Now the White House wants more time.
“This afternoon, the Department of Justice placed calls to representatives of the Chairman and Ranking Member of the United States House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence to ask for additional time to review the request in compliance with the governing legal authorities and to determine what if any responsive documents may exist,” the DOJ letter read.
House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) confirmed the request and responded:
“The Department of Justice has asked for more time to comply with the House Intelligence Committee’s request for information related to possible surveillance of Donald Trump or his associates during the election campaign,” Nunes’ statement said.
“We have asked the Department to provide us this information before the Committee’s open hearing scheduled for March 20. If the committee does not receive a response by then, the Committee will ask for this information during the March 20 hearing and may resort to a compulsory process if our questions continue to go unanswered.”
So Trump and his camp are outraged over what Trump called “McCarthyism” and something bigger than the Watergate scandal, but not so much that they wanted an immediate investigation, nor could they be bothered with gathering the evidence they had and presenting it to the committee prepared to investigate and provide justice for them.
Where things stand now, the White House has suddenly signaled that they will talk about it no further. Former FBI Director James Comey and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper have absolutely denied any such surveillance ever took place.
A number of Republican lawmakers, such as Reps. Jason Chaffetz and Trey Gowdy, and Senators Tom Cotton and Marco Rubio have basically thrown their hands up and said they have no idea what Trump is talking about, because they haven’t seen any evidence to back up his claims.
The plan is to bundle the wiretapping investigation in with the hearing that begins next week into how involved with the 2016 election the Russians were. Both Comey and Clapper are scheduled to take part.
If the Trump administration doesn’t have something to give them by next Monday, we can assume Trump really did just read it on Breitbart.