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Senate Finds No Direct Evidence of Conspiracy Between Trump Campaign, Russia: Report

The Senate Intelligence Committee is approaching the end of its investigation into a possible conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election, NBC News reports. After two years and 200 interviews, the committee has reportedly uncovered no “direct evidence” of a conspiracy, according to representatives from both parties on the panel. “If we write a report based upon the facts that we have, then we don’t have anything that would suggest there was collusion,” said Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC), the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, in an interview with CBS News. However, Democratic and Republican investigators disagree over the implications of a pattern of contacts they have documented between Trump associates and Russians. A Senate Intelligence Committee aide told an Atlantic reporter that there is “a common set of facts” that the panel is working with, but “a disagreement about what those facts mean.” “We are closer to the end than the beginning, but we’re not wrapping up,” the aide reportedly said.

According to Democrats, the pattern of contacts between Trump’s associates and Russians suggest a campaign open to help from a foreign adversary. Trump and his associates reportedly had more than 100 contacts with Russians before the inauguration. “We were never going find a contract signed in blood saying, ‘Hey Vlad, we’re going to collude,” one Democratic aide told NBC News.