Senate Panel To Update Public On Russia Probe

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WASHINGTON (CBSMiami) – Senate lawmakers have scheduled a joint news conference for Wednesday to update the public on its committee’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

This comes as the House Intelligence Committee’s probe continues to come under scrutiny.

Tuesday evening President Donald Trump attempted to reach across the aisle by hosting Senators and their spouses at the White House. The reception came as lawmakers in the Senate Intelligence Committee gear up to interview witnesses in their Russia probe.

“My hope is that Sally Yates would be someone that we’d like to talk to,” said Sen. Mark Warner, D – VA. “We’re trying to do this in a different approach than the House.”

Yates, the former acting Attorney General fired by Trump for not supporting his initial travel ban, was set to testify Tuesday before the House panel investigating possible links between Trump’s administration and Russia. In a letter obtained by CBS News, her attorney was warned by the Trump Justice Department that there was a limit to what she could reveal in her testimony.

Yates followed up with the White House on the matter on Friday, the same day Republican intelligence committee chair, Devin Nunes, canceled the hearing.

“We have no problem with her testifying plain and simple,” said White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer. “To suggest in any way that we stood in the way of that is 100 percent false.”

The controversy, along with Nunes’ secret meeting on White House grounds last week, only added to Democrats beliefs that Nunes cannot lead an impartial investigation. Nunes has stated that he would not step down.

While House Speaker Paul Ryan is standing by Nunes at least one Republican, North Carolina Representative Walter Jones is now demanding Nunes recuse himself. He’s calling for an independent commission to probe Russian interference in the U-S election.

Meanwhile, a Russian billionaire, with ties to both Vladimir Putin and Paul Manafort, says he’s willing to testify before Congress about his dealings with Trump’s former campaign chair. The Senate intelligence committee is scheduled to hold its first public hearing into Russia on Friday.

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