President Donald Trump’s National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster has reportedly concluded that former Obama official Susan Rice did nothing wrong by unmasking the identities of Trump transition officials in conversations with Russian officials.
Two United States intelligence officials told Bloomberg’s Eli Lake that McMaster has concluded that Rice did nothing wrong.
That assertion is at odds with Trump’s thinking, as he repeatedly raised the Rice story during speeches and media interviews.
“I think the Susan Rice thing is a massive story,” Trump said in an interview with the New York Times, suggesting that it was possible that she may have committed a crime.
On April 12, Trump used the story to defend his accusations that the Obama administration was spying and leaking on his transition team in an interview with Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo.
“When you look at Susan Rice and what’s going on and so many people are coming up to me and apologizing now,” Trump said. “They say, ‘You know, you were right when you said that.’”
When Bartiromo told Trump that Rice denied doing anything political, he dismissed it.
“Does anyone really believe that?” he said. “Nobody believes that, even the people that try to protect her in the news media.”
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Devin Nunes continues to investigate the hundreds of unmasking requests from former Obama officials, including those of former deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes.