Senate Intelligence Committee Releases Final Volume of Russia Report

August 18, 2020 Updated: August 21, 2020

The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on Aug. 18 release the fifth and final volume of its report on Russian interference in the 2016 election.

The nearly 996-page report is the culmination of a three-year-long investigation, which involved the interviews of 200 witnesses and the review of more than a million pages of documents.

Similarly to the conclusion of the report by special counsel Robert Mueller, the committee found no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. The report also concludes that Russia intervened in the election to harm Hillary Clinton’s campaign and help the campaign of Donald Trump.

Unlike the Mueller report, the committee’s report thoroughly explores the FBI’s use of the Clinton campaign-funded Steele dossier to obtain a warrant to spy on former Trump campaign advisor Carter Page.

“We can say, without any hesitation, that the Committee found absolutely no evidence that then-candidate Donald Trump or his campaign colluded with the Russian government to meddle in the 2016 election,” the committee’s acting chairman, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), said in a statement.

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Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) speaks during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, on May 5, 2020. (Andrew Harnik/Pool via Reuters)

“What the Committee did find, however, is very troubling. We found irrefutable evidence of Russian meddling. And we discovered deeply troubling actions taken by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, particularly their acceptance and willingness to rely on the ‘Steele Dossier’ without verifying its methodology or sourcing,” Rubio added.

The fifth volume of the report focused on the counterintelligence concerns surrounding the 2016 election. The prior volumes dealt with Russian efforts against U.S. election infrastructure, Russia’s use of social media, the U.S. government’s response to the interference and the creation of the January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment on Moscow’s interference in the presidential election.

Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-Va.), the vice chairman of the committee, said in a statement that the report is “the most comprehensive examination of ties between Russia and the 2016 Trump campaign to date.”

“I encourage all Americans to carefully review the documented evidence of the unprecedented and massive intervention campaign waged on behalf of then-candidate Donald Trump by Russians and their operatives and to reach their own independent conclusions,” Warner said.

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Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) (L) and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), both members of the Senate Intelligence Committee, participate in a discussion at the Atlantic Council in Washington on July 16, 2018. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The report covers a wide range of topics, including entire sections dedicated to Trump campaign associates Carter Page, George Papadopoulos, and Paul Manafort. The document offers the most comprehensive timeline to date of the events surrounding the alleged hacking of the DNC, including the months leading up to the discovery of the breach during which the FBI repeatedly reached out to warn the committee that its systems were likely compromised.

The timeline also offers new insights into the work of private cybersecurity firm Crowdstrike, which the DNC retained to protect its systems, investigate the breach, and oust the hackers.

The Trump campaign responded to the release of the report shortly after it was made public.

“The Russia Collusion Hoax is the greatest political scandal in the history of this country. As this report proves—yet again—there was no collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign,” Tim Murtaugh, Trump 2020 communications director, said in a statement.

“The report does remind Americans that there was, however, political reliance on foreign assistance in 2016, since Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the DNC paid for the bogus Steele Dossier assembled by a foreign operative using Russian disinformation.”

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