Oregon U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden is defending himself after being accused by conservative Washington Post columnist Marc Thiessen of abusing his seat on the Senate Intelligence Committee to falsely claim that he has seen proof that Donald Trump's presidential campaign conspired with Russia to steal the 2016 election.
Thiessen quoted and criticized Wyden and other Trump critics with intelligence connections in a syndicated column that was written shortly after U.S. Attorney General Special Counsel Robert Mueller cleared the campaign of colluding with Russia, according to U.S. Attorney William Barr.
After criticizing reporters and other columnists who claimed that proof of collusion existed, Thiessen wrote, "What is most insidious are those who did have access to classified intelligence and led Americans to believe that they had seen what we could not: actual evidence of Trump-Russia collusion."
Wyden is quoted in the column as saying, "There is no longer a question of whether this campaign sought to collude with a hostile foreign power to subvert America's democracy."
Others criticized by Thiessen include former Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler and, especially, former CIA Director John Brennan.
Asked to respond by Sources, Wyden's office released a statement which said in part, "Senator Wyden has focused consistently on questions of following the money and unraveling the sticky web of connections between the Russians and Donald Trump's business organization, his family and his campaign. Despite Trump apologists' best efforts to intimidate elected members of Congress from conducting constitutionally mandated oversight, the indictments and other documents released by Robert Mueller revealed a troubling but incomplete look at those links.
"Furthermore, Senator Wyden has been concerned with follow-the-money issues because financial entanglements can present an ongoing counterintelligence concern. If Trump has financial entanglements with Russians, our national security could be at risk."
The statement also said that is why Wyden is pressing for the immediate release of the full Mueller report.
You can read the column, titled "The Trump-Russia collusion hall of shame," here.
Portland not shut down yet
Whatever happened to the protests that were supposed to shut down Portland if Mayor Ted Wheeler didn't assign the Portland Police Bureau to Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty?
Shortly after news first broke that police Lt. Jeff Niiya had shared friendly sounding texts with Patriot Prayer leader Joey Gibson, left-wing activists held a news conference at City Hall. They presented a list of demands the city had to meet by Feb. 22, including Wheeler assigning the bureau to Hardesty, suspending Niiya, and launching an independent and outside investigation into "police collaboration with fascist street gangs and white supremacists."
The activists threatened to mount citywide protests, marches and shutdowns if their demands weren't met. But, although Wheeler didn't comply with any of their demands, none of the threats have materialized.
More protests have been held over environmental issues than the police since then.
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