Wednesday on CNN’s “Cuomo Prime Time,” Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) reasserted his previous claims that there was “ample evidence of collusion” between President Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and the Russians.
Partial transcript as follows:
CUOMO: Let’s deal with your critics. They say Republicans in the White House, actually all of them together, are saying you got it wrong and put you number two on the list second only to Senator Blumenthal as someone who shouldn’t be on TV anymore, who shouldn’t be the chair of a committee, because you were selling something not delivered by Mueller. Your response?
SCHIFF: My response is they were clearly not listening. Because what I’ve been saying now for over a year is two things. One, there’s ample evidence of collusion in plain sight, and that is true. And second, that is not the same thing as whether Bob Mueller will be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt the crime of conspiracy. There’s a difference between there being evidence of collusion and proof beyond a reasonable doubt of a crime and I distinguish between the two probably dozens of times. Now, either they weren’t listening or more likely they would rather attack me than talk about how they’re trying to take health care away from millions of people. But nonetheless, I consider it a good day when Kellyanne Conway is going after me.
CUOMO: That makes one of us. Let me ask you this. So help people understand the distinction. I know it. I’m a lawyer, I talk about the difference between collusion as a behavior and conspiracy or a crime that can be made on a regular basis. But people will hear that and they’ll say it’s a hedge. We both know that. They’ll say, ‘Oh, you’re trying to have it both ways.’ Make your case.
SCHIFF: Well, let’s look at the evidence. We know that the Russians through an intermediary offered dirt on Hillary Clinton as part of what was described as the Russian government effort to help Donald Trump. They offered that to Don Jr. and his response was not to call the FBI and say, this is what I was approached with, it was not to say, no way, under no circumstances. It was to say, I would love it. If it’s what you say it is, that is dirt on Hillary Clinton, that is highly sensitive, as part of the Russian government’s effort to help our campaign, I would love it. And then he sets up this secret meeting in Trump Tower and he invites the campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, someone very experienced in running political campaigns, who decides that it’s a good idea to take that meeting and Jared Kushner takes that meeting. And then, of course, they conceal it and they lie about it. And in fact, the president himself may have been involved in a drafting of a false statement covering up that meeting. All of that is evidence of collusion.
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