Special Counsel Robert Mueller has interviewed Tony Fabrizio, a pollster for Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign, a revelation that raises the stakes for the recently uncovered allegation the Campaign Chair Paul Manafort lied to investigators about giving poll data to to a foreign national, according to CNN.
CNN reported that Tony Fabrizio, a partner at Republican public opinion firm Fabrizio, Lee & Associates, was spotted leaving the special counsel's office on February 1 of 2018, and has since been confirmed to be meeting with investigators at that time.
Manafort's lawyers maintain that all of their client's misstatements to Mueller "were not intentional" and happened because he was poorly prepared for his meetings with the special counsel, which started days before he pleaded guilty and then began in earnest the day after his September 14 plea hearing. He referred Reuters to Schiff's statement that lawmakers on the committee "need to find out" about Manafort's interaction with Kilimnik on polling data. Trump did not elaborate and turned to another reporter with a question on a different topic.
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The House Intelligence Committee has been seeking a closed-door session with Cohen to discuss Russia-related matters. The House Oversight and Reform Committee announced Thursday that Cohen will appear before the panel February 7.
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If the report is not made public, however, Congress could issue a subpoena to try to force its release. Trump also had a criminal aspect, which has always been publicly known: whether his firing of Mr.
Kilimnik worked with Manafort's consulting firm when he was representing pro-Russian politicians in Ukraine.
Manafort, former chair of the Trump campaign, pleaded guilty previous year to conspiracy charges in Washington and faces sentencing in a separate case in Virginia, though none of the charges are directly concerned with the alleged collusion between the Kremlin and the Trump campaign. President Trump denies any campaign collusion with Russian Federation.
In their filing, Manafort's lawyers told the judge that they did not need a hearing to hash out Mueller's charges.
Manafort, who ran the Trump campaign from March to August 2016, was convicted last August of eight counts of financial fraud in federal court in Virginia.