WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the investigation into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election(all times EDT):
The White House has sent a letter to the House Intelligence Committee that quotes President Donald Trump’s tweets about potential recordings of conversations between him and ousted FBI director James Comey.
The committee had set a Friday deadline for the White House to say whether the president had recordings of his conversions with Comey, as Trump has suggested.
Trump tweeted Thursday that he “did not make, and do not have, any such recordings.”
The letter from White House legislative affairs director Marc Short refers Reps. Mike Conaway and Adam Schiff to the president’s tweets.
It offers no other explanation or information.
President Donald Trump is faulting his predecessor’s handling of Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election.
Trump tells Fox News contributor Pete Hegseth in an interview set to air Sunday that he “just heard today for the first time” that former President Barack Obama “knew about Russia a long time before the election, and he did nothing about it.”
He says Obama “should have done something about it.”
Trump appeared to be referring to a Washington Post story about the Obama administration’s attempts to address Russia’s influence attempts.
Obama ordered a review of Russia’s actions and imposed new sanctions after the election.
Trump has acknowledged that Russia likely tried to interfere in the election, but has denounced investigations into possible Russian collusion with his campaign as a “witch hunt.”
White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer says the president continues to believe Russia “probably” interfered in the 2016 election, but that “maybe some other countries did as well.”
Spicer said earlier this week he hadn’t discussed the topic with the president.
He said Friday that Trump stands by his January comment that, “As far as hacking, I think it was Russia,” but that “we also get hacked by other countries and other people.”
The nation’s intelligence agencies have concluded that Russia engaged in a brazen, sophisticated campaign to sway the election in Trump’s favor.
Spicer says “of course” the president is “concerned about any country or any actor that wants to interfere in elections.”
He says Trump has taken steps to protect the nation’s voting systems, including creating a commission to study the integrity of the voting process.