Transcript Released Of Fusion GPS Founder's Testimony Before Senate Judiciary Committee

Transcript Released Of Fusion GPS Founder's Testimony Before Senate Judiciary Committee

On Tuesday, Senate Judiciary Committee ranking Democrat Dianne Feinstein, Calif., went around committee Chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, to publish the transcript of a 10-hour, closed-door interview in August with Glenn Simpson, founder of Fusion GPS, the research firm behind a now-famous dossier detailing Trump's alleged Russian Federation ties. Steele thought there was a security issue about whether a presidential candidate was being blackmailed or had been compromised. One way Fusion GPS did that was by hiring a former British intelligence officer, Christopher Steele, to run the traps among his contacts inside Russian Federation and find out what he could about Trump.

"BuzzFeed spokesman Matt Mittenthal defended the publication of the dossier and added, "we look forward to defending our First Amendment rights in court".

After the election, a co-worker of Steele's - Andrew Wood, a former British diplomat in Moscow - discussed the dossier with Sen. Its interest to the public is obvious. Nor is Trump's personal attorney Michael Cohen who has filed not one but two defamation suits Tuesday against Fusion GPS and BuzzFeed. Cohen testified to the House Intelligence Committee behind closed doors on October 24 and publicly to the Senate Intelligence Committee on October 25.

Comey briefed Trump on the existence of the file during the presidential transition, as well as the fact that US intelligence believed it might appear in the press.

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Simpson and another co-founding executive Peter Simpson Fritsch had urged the full publication of the testimony on January 2 in a New York Times op-ed.

Simpson said he and Steele also began referring press questions to the FBI over whether Trump was under investigation, too. If Simpson, as critics of his testimony insist, is that untrustworthy, then so be it, but that would mean that we do not know anything more today than we knew a week ago. On his tweet praising Kushner, Trump joked that the next one facing scrutiny over ties to Russian Federation would be his youngest son, Barron Trump. NPR has not detailed its contents because it is unsubstantiated, but it describes an effort by powerful Russians to build bridges with Trump and his campaign. "Why waste time talking about something that's not legitimate", he said. His legal team is preparing for a potential interview with the special counsel and is in preliminary discussions with Mueller's office about the parameters of such a discussion, a person familiar with the matter said Tuesday.

"It's political rhetoric to call the dossier 'phony, '" he said.

LUCAS: Well, Simpson says that the former British agent who compiled the information in the dossier - it was a man by the name of Christopher Steele - went to the Federal Bureau of Investigation after writing his initial memo in June of 2016. John McCain, R-Ariz., who gave it to then-FBI Director James Comey. Republicans have said the dossier was politically motivated and used to obtain FISA warrants to spy on Mr. Trump's campaign.

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