Trump calls for investigation of the Clintons' Russian ties

William Cummings
Trump calls for a probe into the Clintons' ties with Russia

President Trump said late Monday that the House Intelligence Committee is looking into the wrong 2016 presidential candidate's Russia connections.

While he didn't call for her to be locked up, Trump accused Hillary Clinton — and former president Bill Clinton — of allowing "big Uranium to go to Russia." He made the comments in a series of tweets. Trump appeared to imply that money Bill Clinton received for a speech in Russia and "the Hillary Russian 'reset'" were somehow connected to the uranium deal

@realdonaldtrump: Why isn't the House Intelligence Committee looking into the Bill & Hillary deal that allowed big Uranium to go to Russia, Russian speech..

@realdonaldtrump: ...money to Bill, the Hillary Russian "reset," praise of Russia by Hillary, or Podesta Russian Company. Trump Russia story is a hoax. #MAGA!

It's not the first time Trump has leveled these charges at the Clintons. During a campaign speech in Waukesha, Wis., last September he said Hillary Clinton "gave up 20% of America's uranium supply to Russia." He repeated the same charge during a confrontational White House news conference on Feb. 16.

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The "reset" refers to an attempt in 2009, widely viewed as failed, by then-secretary of State Clinton to usher in a new era of improved U.S.-Russia relations.

The charges stem from Peter Schweizer's book Clinton Cash and an April, 2015 New York Times article. The Times reported the Russians directed $2.35 million — which the Clintons failed to disclose — to the Clinton Foundation at a time when the Russian atomic energy agency was seeking approval for a deal to buy a company that controlled one-fifth of America's uranium production capacity. During this same period, a Russian investment bank tied to the Kremlin paid Bill Clinton $500,000 for a speech in Moscow.

There was no evidence the money influenced then-secretary of State Clinton or the approval of the uranium deal. Hillary Clinton was only one of nine voting members on the committee that reviewed the deal and only former President Obama had the power to veto its approval. The fact-checking website Politifact has dubbed the allegations of impropriety against Clinton in the this matter "mostly false."

Trump wasn't quite done firing off tweets after making the allegations against the Clintons. In his next message, he slammed the Freedom Caucus, repeating his opinion that the group was largely responsible for the failure of the effort in the House of Representatives to "repeal and replace" the Affordable Care Act.

The Freedom Caucus is a group of conservative Republican members of the House.

"The Republican House Freedom Caucus was able to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory," the president tweeted.

@realDonaldTrump: The Republican House Freedom Caucus was able to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. After so many bad years they were ready for a win!

In Trump's final tweet of the night, he repeated his willingness to make a deal on health care with the Democrats "as soon as ObamaCare folds."

@realDonaldTrump: The Democrats will make a deal with me on healthcare as soon as ObamaCare folds - not long. Do not worry, we are in very good shape!