Democrats on Capitol Hill want answers on who knew what, and when, in the wake of former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn’s resignation and reports that Trump campaign aides communicated with Russian intelligence officials.
On Wednesday, Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer described “reports of constant contact between the top officials in the Trump campaign and Russian intelligence” as “chilling,” and outlined a series of demands for further investigation, including a request that campaign and transition officials testify in public and under oath in front of Congress.
Following Flynn’s departure from the administration amid controversy over his contacts with Russia, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi called for the formation of an independent commission to probe Russian involvement in the election, and ties to the administration. “The Trump White House has a lot to answer for,” Pelosi said during a press conference on Wednesday. “Every day we see new evidence of the financial, personal and political grip the Russians have on President Trump.”
The Senate and House Intelligence Committees are already expected to examine potential links between Russia and the Trump campaign as part of ongoing investigations. But Schumer promised on Wednesday that the Senate Intelligence Committee would not be the “only committee that looks into ties between the Trump campaign, transition or administration, and Russia.” A group of congressional Democrats also called on Attorney General Jeff Sessions to appoint an independent Special Counsel to look into potential ties between Trump associates, including Flynn, and the Russian government.