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House GOP Probing Obama-Era Uranium Sale to Russia

by Dartunorro Clark /  / Updated 
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., center, standing with Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., left, and Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., right, speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington on Oct. 24, 2017.Susan Walsh / AP

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Two Republican-led committees will probe an Obama-era uranium sale to Russia, Rep. Devin Nunes announced Tuesday.

Nunes, the GOP chair of the House Intelligence Committee, said he would team up with House Oversight Chairman Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., to jointly investigate the Obama administration’s decision to approve the sale of a Canadian company with American uranium mining abilities to a Kremlin-backed energy company.

President Donald Trump called for such an investigation on Twitter in March. The Senate Judiciary Committee announced last week that it would also be investigating the deal.

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“One of the things that we're concerned about is whether or not there was an FBI investigation, if there was a DOJ investigation and, if so, why wasn’t Congress informed?” Nunes said at a press conference on Capitol Hill. “It’s important for us to find out why this deal went through.”

Rosatom, a Russian atomic energy company, purchased a majority stake in a Canadian company called Uranium One between 2009 and 2013, a move that was approved while Hillary Clinton was secretary of state, according to The New York Times.

Trump has railed against the deal as recently as last week, claiming that the story has gone uncovered.

“Uranium deal to Russia, with Clinton help and Obama Administration knowledge, is the biggest story that Fake Media doesn't want to follow!" he tweeted.

During the 2016 campaign, then-candidate Trump claimed that Clinton "gave up" 20 percent of America's uranium because of the deal. Politifact rated this assertion "mostly false."

The State Department was one of nine government agencies, including several other federal and state regulators, that had to sign off on the sale.

Also on Tuesday, Gowdy and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte announced a separate probe into the FBI's handling of its investigation into Clinton's use of a private email server.

Rep. Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, criticized both of the new investigations as "partisan" and accused his Republican colleagues of a "fundamental lack of seriousness" when it comes to uncovering the extent of Russia's election meddling.

"Acting on the urging of the President who has repeatedly denied the intelligence agencies' conclusions regarding Russian involvement in our election, they are designed to distract attention and pursue the President's preferred goal — attacking Clinton and Obama," Schiff said in a statement.

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