House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes has been cleared of wrongdoing by the House Ethics Committee following an investigation into whether he leaked classified information.
When the ethics committee launched its Nunes inquiry in April, Nunes stepped back from his panel's probe of Russian meddling in the election, handing the day-to-day operations over to Rep. Michael Conaway (R., Texas), with the understanding he would be assisted by Reps.
The Ethics Committee said Thursday it determined the Republican congressman did not disclose classified information while talking about information he had received on a clandestine trip to the White House.
"The disclosure of this information by Chairman Nunes was evidently meant to try to lend some credence to President Trump' claims that former President Obama had Trump Tower wiretapped - claims that have been repeatedly been shown to be absolutely baseless, as confirmed by FBI Director Comey in his testimony before Chairman Nunes' own committee", MoveOn.org's ethics complaint read.
The committee first announced its investigation in April.
The committee was investigating whether that was giving away classified information.
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"While I appreciate the Ethics Committee's work, I need to reiterate that the allegations against me were obviously frivolous and were rooted in politically motivated complaints filed against me by left-wing activist groups", Nunes said.
In his statement, Nunes thanked the ethics committee for "completely clearing me today of the cloud that was created by this investigation, and for determining that I committed no violation of anything-no violation of House Rules, law, regulations, or any other standards of conduct". "Both this House and the American people would undoubtedly benefit from such an act of transparency and accountability to bolster confidence that partisanship does not infect the Ethics Committee's investigations".
He had been accused of improperly disclosing classified information after viewing documents at the White House on Trump-related surveillance issues.
The ethics complaint was filed after Nunes disclosed at an unusual and hastily called news conference that an unidentified source told him dozens of intelligence reports included the names of Trump transition team members whom Nunes alleged were unfairly revealed in the reports.
Nunes said in a statement Thursday night he was angry the review sidelined him for eight months and said it was prompted by partisan criticism.
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