Missouri’s Republican U.S. Senator Roy Blunt thinks the chamber’s Select Committee on Intelligence will follow wherever the facts take them, including the possible involvement of President Donald Trump’s campaign with the Russian government.
According to emails released by Donald Trump Jr., he agreed to meet with someone he thought to be a Russian government attorney last summer after receiving an email offering him “very high level and sensitive information” that would “incriminate” Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.
The disclosure of Trump Jr. being offered potential information from the Russian government to aide his father’s campaign came after months of spirited denials from President Trump that his campaign had a connection to Russia.
Blunt told MSNBC’s Chuck Todd Wednesday afternoon that the Intelligence committee, which he sits on, shouldn’t examine financial ties between Russian and the Trump campaign organization.
“I wouldn’t think so” said Blunt. “I would think that the intel committee, when we get this more pressing issue of Russian involvement in the election, and any involvement that others had with them, if that turns out to be the case, I thinks that’s got to be the top priority.”
Blunt wants the committee to expand its inquiry to find out who in the federal government is leaking classified and confidential information to the press.
“It’s within our responsibility as the intel committee in the Senate to look at the leaks, to look at how secure our own national security structure is” Blunt told MSNBC. “That’s probably where we expand to.”
A number of Republicans have accused career government employees of trying to sabotage the Trump presidency with a flood of leaks.
It’s been strongly suggested that Donald Trump Jr. wanted to collude with the Russian government to sabotage Hillary Clinton in order to boost his father’s campaign. He responded to an email claiming connections to the Russian government and promising dirt on Clinton by saying “I love it”.
Blunt doesn’t think the Trump campaign had the political experience to entertain the notion of collusion. “What you had in the Trump campaign was a candidate who had figured out the exact communicating spot to be with the American people in 2016, and a campaign around him that I was never sure had the capacity to collude with the Republican National Committee, let alone anybody else” said Blunt on MSNBC.
Blunt is one of 8 Republicans who sit on the 15 member Senate Select Committee on Intelligence which often meets behind closed doors. It’s holding a closed briefing Thursday.