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Senate committee scraps subpoena of former Trump campaign chief Manafort

  • The Senate Judiciary Committee has withdrawn its subpoena of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort
  • Its top members say Manafort has started to produce documents and negotiate an interview time
  • The panel is aiming to get information on a 2016 meeting, set up by Donald Trump Jr., that Manafort attended

A Senate committee has withdrawn a subpoena to get a former Trump campaign chairman to testify after he started to provide documents and negotiate an interview, the committee's top members said Tuesday.

The Senate Judiciary Committee said earlier in the day it had issued a subpoena seeking Paul Manafort's testimony at a Wednesday hearing on Russian efforts to influence the 2016 election.

"Faced with issuance of a subpoena, we are happy that Mr. Manafort has started producing documents to the committee and we have agreed to continue negotiating over a transcribed interview," the panel's chairman, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and its ranking member, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said in a statement. "It's important that he and other witnesses continue to work with this committee as it fulfills its oversight responsibility."

Separately, Manafort met with the bipartisan staff of the Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday morning, his spokesman confirmed.

The Judiciary Committee has sought information from Manafort about a meeting he attended with Russian nationals last year at Trump Tower during the heat of the 2016 presidential election campaign. The meeting was set up after Donald Trump Jr., the president's eldest son, was offered compromising information as part of Russia and its government's support for his father's campaign, according to emails that the younger Trump released.

The panel originally requested that both Manafort and Trump Jr. appear publicly Wednesday.

The president and his campaign officials have insisted that nothing improper took place at the meeting and that it did not yield useful information. The president has also said he did not know about the meeting until recently.