6 big takeaways from the extraordinary hearing on Russia, Trump and wiretapping

On Monday, unsubstantiated claims that President Barack Obama wiretapped Trump Tower during last year’s presidential campaign, substantiated claims about Russia’s meddling in the U.S. election to help Trump win, and cloudy claims about Trump associates’ ties to Russia all came to a head.

FBI Director James B. Comey and National Security Agency Director Mike Rogers testified before the House Intelligence Committee in a rare public hearing about what they know and what they want to know.

There was no smoking gun from either side’s perspective, but we did learn more about what the FBI is investigating and what Republicans and Democrats in Congress want to investigate.

Below are six takeaways from the hearing.

1. There’s no evidence of President Donald Trump’s accusation that Obama tapped his phones 

Comey quickly confirmed where the last few weeks seemed to have been leading: There is no evidence to back up Trump’s claim that Obama ordered wiretapping of his Trump Tower phones.

“I have no information that supports those tweets,” Comey said.

Comey’s clear-as-day comments make it impossible for Trump to keep saying he was “wiretapped.”

Former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort had been on the payroll for pro-Russian interests in Ukraine.

Trump officials met with the Russian ambassador to Washington during the Republican National Convention. At that convention, Republicans changed their platform to remove a section that supported giving weapons to Ukraine as it battles Russia for territory.

Former Trump adviser Roger Stone boasted in a speech that he knew of impending WikiLeaks documents related to Hillary Clinton’s campaign before they were published.

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