The former president has also denied the assertion.
“At least we have something in common, perhaps”, Trump quipped during a joint news conference with Merkel.
The House speaker, Paul Ryan, backed the findings of the intelligence committees, saying he had “seen no evidence” of Trump’s allegation against Obama. Spicer presented those reports as evidence that Trump’s tweets were correct.
Leaders of both the House and Senate intelligence committees, including from Trump’s Republican party, have said they have found no evidence to substantiate Trump’s claims that Obama ordered us agencies to spy on Trump or his entourage.
Now, the allegations have been repeated to Fox News by a former judge, Andrew Napolitano, and GCHQ was dragged into the row because Napolitano claimed Obama had used GCHQ to spy on the president as he was campaigning. “They are utterly ridiculous and should be ignored”. Founded in 1846, AP has covered all the major news events of the past 165 years, providing high-quality, informed reporting of everything from wars and elections to championship games and royal weddings.
Lib Dem leader Tim Farron described Mr Spicer’s comments as “shameful” and said they threatened Britain’s security relationship with America. None allege that Obama, as president, ordered surveillance against Trump ― a move that would have violated longstanding protocols insulating the Justice Department from White House meddling.
It will provide a rare chance for lawmakers to grill the Federal Bureau of Investigation director and other officials in a public setting on the allegations that Russian Federation intervened in the campaign in an attempt to tilt it toward Trump.
“If you watched Bret Baier and what he was saying and what he was talking about and how he mentioned the word ‘wiretap, ‘ you would feel very confident that you could mention the name”, Trump explained to Carlson. I read in, I think it was January 20, a New York Times article where they were talking about wiretapping.
“He stands by it”, Spicer said, characterizing the Intelligence Committee’s statement as not final. The NSA has given GCHQ full 24/7 access to its computers, so GCHQ – a foreign intelligence agency that, like the NSA, operates outside our constitutional norms – has the digital versions of all electronic communications made in America in 2016, including Trump’s. Australia, Canada and New Zealand are the other members.
The diplomat and White House official both spoke only on condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.
At one point Spicer began reading news articles from the podium in the Brady Press Room.
The Republican president, without providing evidence, has accused his predecessor, Democrat Barack Obama, of wiretapping him near the end of the campaign.
“The intelligence committees, in their continuing, widening, ongoing investigations of all things Russian Federation, got to the bottom – at least so far with respect to our intelligence community – that no such wiretap existed”, Ryan said in response to a question from CNN at a news conference.
But if the president says something that can not be proved or is demonstrably untrue, it devalues his own currency, Carlson told Trump.
“The Department of Justice has complied with the request from leaders of the House and Senate Intelligence Committees and Judiciary Committees seeking information related to surveillance during the 2016 election”, a department spokeswoman said via email. But it did not comment further on what information, if any, was provided.
“We don’t have any evidence that that took place”, said House of Representatives intelligence committee chair Devin Nunes. He, too, declined to provide details.
Republicans in Congress also said Trump should retract his claims. He complained about a “fake and dishonest press”, and said Twitter allows him to “have my own form of media”.