Looks ‘Politicized’: Paul Ryan Shifts Investigation Focus from Russia Collusion to Unmasking


Monday’s Senate meeting on “Russian Interference in the 2016 Election” was a tale of two hearings: for Democrats it was a chance to hear evidence that former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn was compromised by Russia; for Republicans a chance to focus on unmasking and leaks to the press.

A similar disconnect was on display on Fox & Friends Tuesday, where Paul Ryan — with a little help from Steve Doocy — artfully shifted the conversation away from Russia to an investigation into unmasking and leaks.

Doocy kicked off by claiming “the Democrats wanted to talk about whether or not there was collusion between the Russians and the Trump camp — no evidence of that.”

“But the Republicans wanted to talk about how somebody inside the government unmasked a name or two,” he continued. “And then leaked to The Washington Post, and that they say is a crime.”

“That is a crime,” Ryan agreed. “And so that is taking classified information, making it unclassified, and then leaking it online.”

“That is something somebody in the Obama administration decided to do, and it did happen, so the question of this investigation is to get to the bottom of that,” he added.

As a reminder, the investigation Ryan is referring to is not the investigation into Russian meddling in the U.S. election (the topic of Monday’s hearing) but one looking at unmasking and leaks to the press.

“Do you think the motivation though, on whomever did this was to sandbag the Trump administration?” Doocy asked.

“I’m not going to prejudge this investigation, because we’re in the middle of it, but it certainly looks like it,” Ryan said.

“It certainly looks like this was politicized.”

[image via screengrab]

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Aidan McLaughlin is the Editor of Mediaite. Send tips via email: aidan@mediaite.com. Ask for Signal. Follow him on Twitter: @aidnmclaughlin