Skip to main content

Sean Spicer
  Wolf  CNN  March 20, 2017 10:51am-11:00am PDT

10:51 am
department official. hold on one second. sean spicer just started speaking on this. >> pursuing the facts in this. as has been previously propertied director comey confirmed that the fbi is investigating russia's role in interfering with the election. let me comment. following this testimony it's clear nothing has change. senior intelligence officials have gone on record to say there is no evidence of a trump/russia collusion. we take them at their word. however there was new information that came from the hearing we believe is news worthy about the intelligence gathering process and the unmasking of americans identified in intelligence reports and the illegal leak of such unmaved individuals which is a federal crime. director comey told the committee certain appointees in the obama administration had second quarter's to the names of unmasked u.s. citizens such as
10:52 am
senior white house officials, senior department of justice officials, and senior intelligence officials. before president obama left office michael flynn was unmasked and illegally his identity was leaked out to media outlets despite the fact that as director rogers said unmasking endangers national security. not only was general flynn's identity made available director comey refused to answer the question whether or not he had actually briefed president obama on his phone calls and activities. director comey called these types of disclezures of classified information a threat to national security and said he will investigate and pursue these matters to the full extent of law. he also said that the leaking of classified information has become quote unusually active in the time frame in question. it's also important to note that both directors comey and rogers told the committee they have no evidence that votes were changed in the swing states the president had won.
10:53 am
you i think that pretty much until we get the ending of this hearing, i don't know that i want to comment too much further. with that i'm glad to take a few questions. jonathan. >> does the president still have complete confidence in fbi director comey? >> there is no reason to believe he doesn't at this time. john. >> wait. >> i answered. >> he said there is no information to support the allegation has the president made against president obama. >> at the time. >> is the president prepared to withdraw that accusation and apologize to the president? >> no, we started a hearing. of the' still ongoing. as chairman nunes mentioned this is one of a series of hearings that will be happening. as i noted last week there is also a lot of interesting news coming out of that in terms of the activities that have gone on to reveal the information on american citizens that have been part of this, particularly general flynn. there is lot of things that aren't being covered in this hearing that i think are interesting that you know since it's ongoing i'll leave that for
10:54 am
now but i think there is a lot of areas that still need to be covered. there is a lot of information that still needs to be discussed. >> director also said he is investigating the links and the possibility of coordination between the trump campaign and the russians. given that the president just this morning said that the democrats made up the russia story, why would the fbi director be investigating a story if it's simply -- >> i don't think that's what he said. >> he said he is vetting the nature of any links between any individuals associated with the trump campaign and the russian government and whether or not there was any coordination. >> correct. investigating and having proof are different thing. the acting cia director said there was smoke but not fire. senator tom cotton, not that i'm seeing. not that i'm aware of. clapper, not to my knowledge. a senator from delaware, i have no evidence of collusion. there is a point at which you continue to search for something
10:55 am
that everybody who has been briefed hasn't seen or foub. i think it's fine to look into it. but at the end of the day they are going to come to the same conclusion everybody else has had. you can continue to look for something but continuing to look for something that doesn't exist doesn't matter. there is a discussion -- i heard names floated around before that were hangers onner on the campaign. i think at some point people that you know got thrown around at the beginning of this hearing, some of those names, the greatest amount of interaction that they have had is had cease and desist letters sent to them. >> roger stone and the carter pages? >> exactly. the carter pages, yes. but i mean those people, if greatest amount of interaction they had with the campaign was the campaign apparently sending them a series of cease and desist letters. again, i think when you read a lot of this activity about associates, there is a fine line between people who want to be part of something that they never had an official role in and people who actually played a role in either the campaign or the transition. julie. >> two questions on the hearing
10:56 am
today. does the president now that we know there is an ongoing investigation by the fbi does the president stand by his comments that he is not aware of any contacts that his campaign associates had with russia during the election? >> yes. >> and then the second one is has anyone from the white house -- >> can i just amend the first -- >> sure. >> just to be clear, obviously general flynn, but, again. >> right, during the campaign and before the election. >> i'm not aware of any at this time. but even general flynn was a volunteer of the campaign. obviously there has been discussion of paul manafort who played a very limited role for a very limited amount of time. but beyond -- >> jonathan hold on. can you stop interrupting other people's questions. -- jn than, somebody is asking a question. it's not your press briefing. julie is asking a question. please calm down. julie. >> are you saying the president is aware of contacts that manafort. >> no, no, nothing that hasn't
10:57 am
been previously discussed. i just don't want to make it look like we are not aware of. mara? >> you made a point of saying that comey refused to say whether he had briefed obama about the investigation and also the president on his official account tweeted the same thing today. comey made a point today of saying please do not draw any conclusions from my ability to confirm or deny thinking anything. but you are drawing a conclusion from that. >> i think we are pointing it out. i mean we are making a point that it is not known. and i think there is further -- to everyone who was looking for a conclusion today, i think there is a lot more that needs to be discussed and looked at before we can jump to a conclusion about -- hold on. i think the point is is that in the same token you have got individuals that want an answer and at the same time there is clearly a lot of information that hasn't come out or been
10:58 am
discussed. >> you are looking forward to the investigation? >> i think there is a lot more to come is the answer that i -- >> the reason i asked is you said they are going to come to the same conclusion as everybody else. as if you already know that the conclusion -- >> no, no. what i'm getting at is this media narrative that continues the talk about collusion that exists. yet everyone who has been briefed, clapper, the obama appointee, have all said that nothing that they have seen makes them believe there was any collusion. i think there is a difference between talking about an investigation into 2016 election which we all know and any evidence of collusion. there is no evidence according to the people that have been briefed of my collusion or activity that leads them to believe that that economistxist. i think that is an important point that gets overlooked over and over again. >> you said it's fine to look into it but they are going to
10:59 am
come to the same collusion that collusion doesn't exist. so you already know. >> no, no, that's not what i'm saying. what i'm saying is every single person, what the director said today is there is onion going investigation. my point is to say everybody who has been briefed on that investigation -- it doesn't -- there is an asumsz because there is an investigation it must mean it's about something. my point to you is that there is an assumption on behalf of most people in the media about what investigation must mean. my point to you is despite the narrative that gets played over and over again with respect to what the investigation might mean in terms of collusion, every person, republican and democrat, that has been briefed on it has come to the same conclusion, that there is no collusion and that's over. while we can talk about an investigation big picture holistically, the idea that so many people are trying to jump to a collusion conclusion seems very, very misguide. jake. >> off the tillerson briefing --
11:00 am
[ inaudible ] next month to be -- was that extended on that trip? do you expect that to be taking april 5th, 6, 7, 8th. >> i will try to have a read out. i know they are going to talk about what he accomplished in japan, south korea and obviously in beijing. but i'm going to let the secretary of state debrief the president before i get