House Intel to vote next week on final Russia report

The House Intelligence Committee plans to vote March 22 on a final version of its report on the committee’s Russia investigation, Rep. Mike Conaway told CNN Wednesday, although that report is still being revised.

Conaway, a Texas Republican leading the House’s Russia probe, said the committee will vote on sending the Republican-drafted report to the intelligence community for declassification, and he was open to voting on sending a Democratic document for declassification, too.

The committee’s time frame gives Democrats just over a week to negotiate with their Republican counterparts on the contents of the 150-page draft report, which Republicans shared with Democrats on Tuesday. While Democrats are at odds with the key findings laid out in the Republican report, Conaway said he was still hopeful they would sign on to some of what the Republicans had written, such as how Russia meddled in the election.

The report is still being edited, and there was a new version of the document Wednesday, according to a senior committee official.

After the committee votes next week, it’s not clear how long the declassification process will take before any reports are made public, likely with redactions. Conaway said the committee also planned to vote to allow all House members to view the classified versions of the reports, just as the panel did for its Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act memos.

The Republican report concludes there was no evidence of collusion between Donald Trump’s team and Russia, and it also says there wasn’t evidence to support the intelligence community’s assessment that Russian President Vladimir Putin tried to help elect Trump.

Some Republicans on the committee have backed away from the notion Russia wasn’t helping Trump. Rep. Trey Gowdy of South Carolina said Tuesday it was “clear, based on the evidence, Russia had disdain for Secretary Clinton and was motivated in whole or in part by a desire to harm her candidacy or undermine her presidency had she prevailed.” And Conaway said whether one concludes the Russian effort was designed to help Trump get elected is a “glass half full, glass half empty” thing.

Rep. Adam Schiff of California says Intelligence Committee Democrats are planning to write their own long-form report laying out what they found and what hasn’t been investigated, and he said Tuesday there was “significant evidence” of collusion between Trump’s team and Russia.