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Ari Melber Confronts Swalwell With His Past Comments on Trump-Russia

MSNBC’s Ari Melber tonight pressed Congressman Eric Swalwell on some of his past claims about collusion and President Donald Trump being a Russian asset.

Melber ran a montage of Swalwell saying things like that he thinks Trump has been an agent of the Russians and that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians.

“Do you accept the findings in the Mueller report,” Melber asked, “that do not support some of those claims?”

Swalwell responded that he should have been “out there earlier” given all the links between Team Trump and Russians, adding that it’s clear “the Russians helped Donald Trump.”

“To be clear,” Melber jumped in to ask, “you’re no longer maintaining that he is effectively a ‘Russian asset.'”

“I think he acts on Russia’s behalf, and I challenge him to show me otherwise,” Swalwell responded.

Melber again asked him about accepting Mueller’s findings, saying, “You… were discussing it at the level of a financial link or a conspiratorial collaboration, which Mueller’s evidence doesn’t support.”

“So I want to find out do you accept that?” he asked.

“There’s evidence of collusion and coordination there,” Swalwell responded. “It doesn’t go beyond a reasonable doubt, but that doesn’t mean this is a good guy. We know the Russians helped him, he asked the Russians to help him, the campaign expected to benefit from it.”

And as long as Trump won’t release his tax returns, he added, there’s a question of “how do we know he’s not going to be blackmailed by Vladimir Putin?”

“You can ask all those tough questions,” Melber said, “but are you or are you not maintaining the asset theory, even though a 400-plus page report from Mueller does not document that.”

Swalwell said he believes Trump “acts on Russia’s behalf too many times” and puts their interests ahead of America’s.

You can watch the full exchange above, via MSNBC.

[image via screengrab]

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Josh Feldman is a Senior Editor at Mediaite. Email him here: josh@mediaite.com Follow him on Twitter: @feldmaniac