Trump administration officials asked intelligence officials and members of Congress to help them downplay and speak out against news reports about the Trump campaign’s connections to Russian intelligence, according to a Washington Post report. These individuals reportedly called journalists attempting to “challenge” stories in the New York Times, CNN and elsewhere about top Trump advisers’ alleged communication with Russian government officials. The administration had reportedly attempted to persuade FBI officials to speak out against these news reports prior to these phone calls, but were unsuccessful. Sen. Richard Burr and Rep. Devin Nunes, who chair the Senate and House intelligence committees, respectively, confirmed to the Post that they spoke with reporters about the Russia stories, with Nunes declaring that his conversations were “at the request of White House communications aide.”
You *really* don't want the WH COS calling the FBI director to have ANY conversations about ANYTHING related to ongoing investigations.
— Christopher Hayes (@chrislhayes) February 23, 2017