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Senate leaders reject wiretap assertion

Reuters WASHINGTON (Reuters) — The leaders of the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee issued a bipartisan statement on Thursday rejecting U.S. President Donald Trump’s assertion that the Obama administration tapped his phones during the 2016 presidential campaign.

The top Republican in Congress, House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan, added his voice to a growing chorus of lawmakers saying there was no sign of a wiretap.

In a testy briefing with reporters, White House spokesman Sean Spicer forcefully defended the president, citing news reports of intelligence collection on possible contacts between Trump associates and Russia in the presidential campaign.

“There is no question that there were surveillance techniques used throughout this,” Spicer said.

The Republican president, without providing evidence, has accused his predecessor, Democrat Barack Obama, of wiretapping him near the end of the campaign.

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