Swalwell refuses to answer Trump 'Russian asset' question despite Mueller report
FILE: Rep. Eric Swalwell speaks during a news conference regarding the separation of immigrant children at the U.S. Capitol.
(Alex Edelman/Getty Images)
Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., on Wednesday refused to acknowledge that the Mueller Report failed to establish evidence of a criminal conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia and appeared to double down on his claims that President Trump puts Russia's interest before the U.S.
Swalwell has been one of Trump's most vocal Democratic critics and has announced his bid for the 2020 presidential election.
MSNBC host Ari Melber challenged Swalwell during his appearance.
“Do you accept the findings in the Mueller report that do not support some of those claims?” Melber asked Swalwell.
“I accept that I probably should have been out there a little bit earlier because who knew how many links there were? 200 pages of links," Swalwell said. Melber pressed him again, asking if he no longer maintained that Trump is a “Russian asset.”
“No, I think he acts on Russia’s behalf and I challenge him to show me otherwise,” Swalwell said.
The host asked him one more time about the distance between his allegations of conspiracy and the findings in the Mueller report. Swalwell replied that he believes Trump puts Russia’s "interests ahead of our interests," citing "Assad in Syria, he wants to reduce the role of NATO, he continues to pull back sanctions on Russia, he won't tell us what he talked about with Vladimir Putin and he won't tell us anything about his finances with the Russians."
Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report released late last month revealed Mueller did not establish evidence that the Trump campaign had conspired with Russia.
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Swalwell has long been a critic of the president and even documented his determination to not buy coffee at Trump Tower on Twitter in February.
Trump has railed against Mueller’s report, even resorting to public profanity in dismissing it, but has also embraced it, claiming exoneration and painting any other attempt as partisan overreach.
“You want to see the nonpartisan, definitive, conclusive taxpayer-funded lengthy unobstructed, unimpeded, un-interfered with investigation? You just saw it and it’s called the Mueller report,” senior counselor Kellyanne Conway said Wednesday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report
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