The Senate Intelligence Committee, after a thorough investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, released their final report on the matter. Senator Rubio, the Chairman of the Committee said “no probe into this matter has been more exhaustive,” as the members interviewed over 200 witnesses and reviewed over 1 million pages of documents. Russian interference in the 2016 election took the political world by storm, stealing headlines and undermining President Trump’s legitimacy as Commander-In-Chief. But after years of investigation, the conclusion has repeatedly been that President Trump did not collude with Russia to win the election.
“We can say, without any hesitation, that the Committee found absolutely no evidence that then-candidate Donald Trump or his campaign colluded with the Russian government to meddle in the 2016 election. What the Committee did find, however, is very troubling,” wrote Senator Marco Rubio in a statement. The bipartisan probe looked at the information the FBI relied on as justification for Crossfire Hurricane, the subsequent Russia investigation, and the Trump team members with alleged links to Russian intelligence.
The committee concluded there was “irrefutable evidence of Russian meddling,” in particular through the relationship between Russian officials and Campaign Manager Paul Manafort. But according to Rubio, the FBI’s “deeply troubling actions,” centered around the Bureau’s “acceptance and willingness to rely on the ‘Steele Dossier’ without verifying its methodology or sourcing.” The committee said the FBI gave “unjustified credence, based on an incomplete understanding of Steele’s past reporting record.”
The committee continued, “The FBI used the dossier in a FISA application and renewals, and advocated for it to be included in the Intelligence Community Assessment before taking the necessary steps to validate assumptions about Steele’s credibility.”