Republican Senator Marco Rubio (FL) came to the defense of his Democratic colleague after a Fox News report suggested that he engaged in misconduct by texting with a lobbyist linked to a Russian billionaire.
Rubio defended Senator Mark Warner, D-VA, a top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, after Fox News reported that he had “extensive contact” with lobbyist Adam Waldman in 2017 in an attempt to contact Christopher Steele, the British spy behind the infamous “Steele dossier” on then-candidate Donald Trump.
Waldman’s lobbying firm worked with Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska in 2009 and 2010. The firm, according to Fox News, also has ties to Hillary Clinton.
The Fox News article alleges that “secrecy seemed very important to Warner” and that he wanted to connect “directly with Steele without anyone else on the Senate Intelligence Committee being in the loop — at least initially.”
After the article was published, Rubio came to Warner’s defense in a tweet Thursday evening, writing, “Sen.Warner fully disclosed this to the committee four months ago.Has had zero impact on our work.”
Senator Richard Burr, R-NC, also issued a joint statement with Sen. Warner after the report, which they derided as “leaks of incomplete information.”
“From the beginning of our investigation we have taken each step in a bipartisan way, and we intend to continue to do so,” Warner and Burr said in the statement. “Leaks of incomplete information out of context by anyone, inside or outside our committee, are unacceptable.”
President Donald Trump, on the other hand, focused on the text messages’ content and the lobbyist’s ties to “crooked Hillary.”
“Wow! -Senator Mark Warner got caught having extensive contact with a lobbyist for a Russian oligarch. Warner did not want a “paper trail” on a “private” meeting (in London) he requested with Steele of fraudulent Dossier fame. All tied into Crooked Hillary,” President Trump tweeted Thursday night.