What you need to know about Susan Rice and the unmasking controversy

Unravelling the Team Obama anti Trump leak machineMore

"I think it's going to be the biggest story".

Trump does not claim to have such evidence.

Ms. Rice has denied any impropriety. Rice said, adding Obama officials never used intelligence to spy on Trump officials for political purposes.

In an interview with MSNBC on Tuesday, Rice acknowledged that she sometimes asked for the names of Americans referenced in reports.

Rice declined to comment through a spokeswoman: "I'm not going to dignify the President's ludicrous charge with a comment".

In late March, Rice said publicly that she knew "nothing" of President Trump's claims that he was wiretapped.

According to Eli Lake of Bloomberg, Rice "requested the identities of United States persons in raw intelligence reports on dozens of occasions that connect to the Donald Trump transition and campaign".

Rice reportedly tried to learn the identities of officials on Trump's transition team whose conversations with foreign officials may have been incidentally collected during routine intelligence-gathering operations.

NBC News reported there was no way Rice could've "ordered" the unmasking of any citizen, as only the agencies that gathered the intelligence have the power to make such a call.

The White House and Trump himself later said that the wiretapping allegations referred to broader surveillance by the Obama administration.

Those reports, which Nunes revealed in a news conference and were the foundation for a briefing he provided to the president, were uncovered by National Security Council officials working in the White House who, The Washington Post reported, secretly passed them on to Nunes.

A source close to the matter told ABC News that Trump had no knowledge of the unmasking when he wrote those tweets.

"Do I think? Yes, I think", Trump told the New York Times in an interview in the Oval Office, while declining to give evidence or say if he personally viewed intelligence to back his claim.

When Rice was asked if she was the one who leaked former National Security Advisor Mike Flynn's name, she responded, "I leaked nothing to nobody, and never have and never would". "There is no equivalence between so-called unmasking and leaking". Some Trump allies have accused Rice of unmasking officials for political reasons.

Some would say that it is possible that she suspected some sort of inappropriate action (s) by Trump staffers, such as engaging in foreign policy discussions that would interfere with then current US policy, which would could have been a violation of the Logan Act. Whether or not Rice conducted the requests within the confines of federal law remains unclear.

Rice has said that the pace of intelligence reports on Russian meddling increased beginning in the summer of 2016.

An April 3 Daily Caller report that Rice ordered USA spy agencies to produce "detailed spreadsheets" of legal phone calls involving Donald Trump and his aides when he was running for president makes this story more interesting.

That might be exactly what President Trump wants - a distraction from the investigations. The identities of Americans who talk with those foreigners, or who are discussed in conversations between two non-U.S. persons, are masked in intelligence reports. The president's advisers quickly embraced Nunes' revelations, but did not acknowledge at the time that the congressman had viewed the information at the White House with the help of White House officials.

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