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U.S. Lawmakers Clash Over Whether Russia Investigation Into Trump Is ‘Case Closed’

Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi
Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi

U.S congressional leaders have clashed over whether the investigation into Russia interference in the 2016 presidential election is, in fact, over, despite Special Counsel Robert Mueller having formally concluded his work.

Several Democratic-led committees in the House of Representatives have ongoing investigations related to the findings released in Mueller's final report last month.

Mueller's report also mentioned more than a dozen outstanding criminal cases linked to his investigation. The report did not conclusively determine that Trump committed obstruction of justice, although it also did not clear him of the allegations.

In a speech on May 7, Mitch McConnell, the top Republican in the Senate, said Democrats "told everyone there had been a conspiracy between Russia and the Trump campaign, yet on this special question, the special counsel's finding is case closed."

Democrats have said they want further probes.

Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic leader of the House of Representatives, said Congress "would be delinquent" if it did not continue investigating.

"The case is not closed," she said.

Mueller was appointed in May 2017, taking over an FBI investigation that was opened in late spring 2016 into interactions between Trump campaign associates and Russian officials.

In September 2016, the FBI had a longtime informant, and an FBI investigator, meet with a Trump campaign official to discuss the official's conversation with a Russian man.

Last month, Attorney General William Barr, who was appointed by Trump, suggested that may have amounted to spying on a political campaign.

FBI Director Christopher Wray seemed to break with Barr's statement in testimony before a Senate committee on May 7.

"I don't think I personally have any evidence of that sort," he said.

"That's not the term I would use," he said.

Based on reporting by AP, AFP, and Reuters

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