This week, Representative Devin Nunes, chairman of the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee , told 'Fox News Sunday' host Chris Wallace that the only crime committed in the awareness of tomorrow's hearing on the Trump-Russia-election hacking incident are the illegal leaking of Trump administration communications. He promised to "get to the bottom" of who was responsible.
"I actually said this a couple of weeks ago," Nunes said about the wiretapping accusations. "The president doesn't go and physically wiretapped something. So if you take the president literally, it didn't happen."
He added: "I think the concern that we have is that are -- were there any other surveillance activities that were used unmasked the names. For example, we know that General Flynn's name was unmasked. And so, was there a physical wiretap of Trump Tower? No. But there -- there never was."
"The other issue though that's still remaining out there is the unmasking of names and the leaking of names. And so there's a -- you know, we have a lot of surveillance activities in this country and I think the concern that the Trump administration has is, you know, were they actually using surveillance activities to know what they were up to, because we know that that happened with General Flynn. We know that his name was unmasked and we know that it was leaked out to the press."
He concluded: "That's what we're trying to get to the bottom of. Where there any other names that were unmasked, leaked, and leaked out?"
"I think it was largely people maybe who were there, had classified information, who are now no longer there and decided to leak it... I mean this is just the beginning. Another week from now, a week from Tuesday, on the 28th, we have an additional hearing with at least three more witnesses. So we're trying to get to everyone who -- for lack of a better term -- was at the crime scene, and we're trying to bring them all in and see what they knew, when they knew it, if they know about the leaks, if they knew about General Flynn's his name being unmasked. These are all questions that we need to get to the bottom of."
WALLACE: Well, I just -- I just want to make that point because you -- you -- there is no evidence that there was any wiretapped -- I'm not talking with President Obama doing it, but his administration -- no evidence of any wiretapping of Trump Tower?
NUNES: No -- no -- there was no FISA warrant that I'm aware of to Trump -- to tap Trump Tower. That's correct.
WALLACE: And that's after you received this information?
NUNES: That's accurate.
WALLACE: OK. So then what's your point?
NUNES: So the other -- the other issue though that's still remaining out there is the unmasking of names and the leaking of names. And so there's a -- you know, we have a lot of surveillance activities in this country and I think the concern that the Trump administration has is, you know, were they actually using surveillance activities to know what they were up to, because we know that that happened with General Flynn. We know that his name was unmasked and we know that it was leaked out to the press. So the question is, did that happen --
WALLACE: Right, but -- but our -- but our understanding of that is that that was because you had regular surveillance, not you, but I mean the government had regular surveillance of the Russian ambassador, Sergey Kislyak. What I'm asking about is something -- and I'll get back to the unmasking in a second.
WALLACE: There's this whole question of whether there was any surveillance, not wiretapping but any surveillance at Trump Tower. And I want to play what Donald Trump said this week. Here it is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: We will be submitting certain things and I will be perhaps speaking about this next week. Wiretap covers a lot of different things. I think you're going to find some very interesting items coming to the forefront over the next two weeks.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALLACE: As I said, we're going to get to the unmasking issue, which is a serious issue, in a moment. But is -- do you know what he's talking about? Is there any evidence of any surveillance, electronic surveillance --
NUNES: Well, if he's talking about the unmasking of names, and so if there were other surveillance activities where names were picked up and then unmasking occurred, and that was spread throughout the intelligence community, that is very -- that is very possible, and we don't have the answers to those questions yet. I don't know if the president has those are not. But we had a deadline of Friday for the NSA, FBI and CIA to get us those names that were unmasked through the FISA system. We didn't get those names on Friday. So until we get those names, we can't rule this out.
WALLACE: You're going to have a hearing tomorrow. We've been talking about FBI Director Comey is going to be there. NSA Chief Mike Rogers is going to be there. What do you hope to learn at that hearing?
NUNES: Well, we're excited about this because for the first time the American people, and all the political parties now, are paying attention to the threat that Russia poses. So we're going to highlight that. We'll highlight the fact that we know that the Russians were trying to get involved in our campaign, like they have for many decades. They're also trying to get involved in campaigns around the globe and -- over in Europe. So I think it will be good to highlight that.
Secondly, we're worried about analytical integrity. We don't know how there were information changed and if information changed because in December, the beginning of December, the assessment was that, hey, the Russians were trying to go -- get into our election process and cause problems and sew doubt in our -- in our system. But then that changed a month later and they it said, no, no, no, that they were trying to help Donald Trump. So we need to get to the bottom of that.
And then also, you know, whether or not they did try to help Trump, and if any Trump associates or anyone else was involved.