The Republican chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Devin Nunes of California, is still under fire for telling President Donald Trump about the incidental collection of data by government institutions that were surveilling foreign political actors.
On Thursday Fox News claimed that an anonymous source had said that "Republican congressional investigators expect a potential 'smoking gun' establishing that the Obama administration spied on the Trump transition team, and possibly the president-elect himself, will be produced to the House Intelligence Committee this week."
The site claims that this "classified intelligence showing incidental collection of Trump team communications" had been seen by Rep. Nunes before Trump made his accusation against President Barack Obama.
"The intelligence is said to leave no doubt the Obama administration, in its closing days, was using the cover of legitimate surveillance on foreign targets to spy on President-elect Trump, according to sources," Fox News wrote.
The story also claims that National Security Agency documents being sent to the House Intelligence Community on Friday could include a "smoking gun."
A spokesman for Nunes told ABC News on Thursday that the congressman can't say "for sure" whether Trump or members of his transition team were involved in phone calls that theoretically support Nunes' claims that there was evidence that Trump team members were caught in surveillance. "He said he'll have to get all the documents he requested from the [intelligence community] about this before he knows for sure," the spokesman told ABC News.
Meanwhile Nunes explained to Fox News' Sean Hannity on Thursday why he ran to the White House with what he claimed to be a bombshell allegation. "It’s clear that I would be concerned if I was the president, and that’s why I wanted him to know," Nunes said. "I felt like I had a duty and obligation to tell him, because, as you know, he’s taking a lot of heat in the news media, and I think to some degree there are some things he should look at to see whether, in fact, he thinks the collection was proper or not."