The White House has invited the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee to view materials related to incidental collection, he told reporters Thursday afternoon. The White House quickly embraced Nunes' revelations, saying they vindicated Trump's explosive and unverified claim that President Barack Obama wiretapped his NY skyscraper.
A few minutes later, Nunes arrives at the White House grounds.
The newspaper named the individuals who provided Nunes with the information as Ezra Cohen-Watnick, the senior director for intelligence at the National Security Council, and Michael Ellis, a lawyer at the White House Counsel's Office.
One day after the meeting, Nunes revealed in a press conference he had new information that showed the US intelligence community incidentally surveilled Trump's team during the transition.
Cohen-Watnick and Rep. Nunes both served on the Trump transition team.
A White House spokesperson declined to comment. Nunes' committee is heading an investigation into Russia's involvement in the presidential election, and the chairman did not brief his fellow members on the intelligence reports before holding a press conference and meeting with the president on March 22.
Mr. Cohen-Watnick is a former Defense Intelligence Agency official who was originally brought to the White House by Michael T. Flynn, the former national security adviser.
Schiff said Nunes has still not revealed the intelligence he said he shared with Trump and has pledged to share with the committee, or who Nunes met with at the White House.
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After his press conference, Nunes briefed President Trump on the findings without touching base with the rest of the House Intelligence Committee.
"If that was created to hide the origin of the materials, that raises profound questions about just what the White House is doing", Schiff said.
But it's unclear if the documents Rep.
Nunes has repeatedly sidestepped questions about who provided him the intelligence reports, though he pointedly has not denied that he sources were in the White House.
Cohen-Watnick is among about a dozen White House officials who would have access to the types of classified information Nunes says he viewed, according to current and former USA officials. House Speaker Paul Ryan, in an interview with CBS' "This Morning" that aired Thursday, said Nunes told him a "whistleblower-type person" provided the information.
Schiff got today's White House invite simultaneous with Sean Spicer's press briefing at which the White House press secretary announced the offer was going out to the chairs and ranking members of the House and Senate intel committees.
"We had staff-to-staff discussions with their congressional affairs people", Nunes spokesman Jack Langer said.
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