No evidence of Obama wiretapping Trump Tower: FBI director
FBI Director James Comey informed the US House of Representatives Intelligence Committee that there is no evidence supporting President Donald Trump's allegations of former president Barack Obama wiretapping Trump Tower in October 2016. However, Republican chairman Devin Nunes said other means of surveillance could have still been used. FBI is also looking into reports of Russian hacking to manipulate the November 2016 election results.
Trump alleges Obama bugged Trump Tower
US President Donald Trump stated that former President Obama wire tapped phones in the Trump Tower in New York, toward the end of the election campaign. Taking to Twitter, Trump said "How low has President Obama gone to tapp my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergate." However, Trump offered no evidence to back his claims.
Under US law, a Federal judge would have to find probable cause to approve a warrant to conduct wire tapping, only by the FBI. The judge would have had to find that Trump had committed a crime or was an agent of a foreign power.
Obama denies bugging Trump Tower
Former US President Barack Obama's spokesperson Kevin Lewis stated that "neither President Obama nor any White House official ever ordered surveillance on any US citizen. Any suggestion otherwise is simply false." His comments were a response to President Donald Trump's allegations that Obama tapped Trump's phones during the election campaign. Trump had compared the alleged phone tapping to the Watergate scandal.
FBI Director rejects Trump's wiretapping allegation
Trump's allegations of his phone being tapped by Obama were denied by the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), James Comey. Comey reportedly requested the US Justice Department to reject the allegations of Obama wiretapping Trump's phones during the campaign, as it indicates that the FBI assisted in law-breaking. The Justice-Department hasn't issued any statement so far in response to Comey's request.
White House says 'no question that something happened' with wiretapping
Sean Spicer, the White House press secretary, declined to provide specific information supporting President Donald Trump's earlier tweets accusing former President Barack Obama of wiretapping Trump during the election. However, he defended the Trump's tweets saying "there's no question that something happened. The question is: is it surveillance, or wiretapping or whatever?" Neither Trump nor Spicer have provided any evidence of the alleged wiretapping.
Trump asked to clarify allegations against Obama
US Senator John McCain has asked President Trump to either retract the allegations he made against former President Obama, or substantiate it with evidence. He said, "The State of the Union has no reason to believe Trump's allegation. The President has not supported it with any evidence." The White House is yet to make a comment on the matter.
Senate intelligence panel rejects Trump's wiretap claims
The Senate Intelligence panel stated that there were "no indications" that the Trump Tower was under surveillance by the US government. However, White House spokesman Sean Spicer said Obama evaded oversight by asking British intelligence to monitor Trump. Trump stood by his claims that he was under surveillance by Obama. Speaking to the media, Trump said "wiretap covers a lot of different things".