Senator releases text of interview with Fusion GPS official

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Senator Dianne Feinstein unilaterally released on Tuesday the transcript of a congressional interview with Glenn Simpson, whose research firm was behind the dossier on alleged contacts between Donald Trump's campaign and the Russian government. "One of those pieces of intelligence was a human source from inside the Trump organization".

"The transcript of Glenn Simpson's lengthy responses to the Senate Judiciary Committee's questioning speaks for itself", Fusion GPS said.

Through much of 2017, Feinstein and Grassley made joint requests for information about Russian Federation and the FBI's investigation of election interference.

"Yes, but I'm not going to get into sourcing information", Simpson replied.

This included some potentially embarrassing claims, in particular, an encounter that allegedly took place in the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Moscow involving Trump, urine, and prostitutes.

According to Simpson, Steele flew to Rome to meet an Federal Bureau of Investigation agent stationed there for his second debriefing before the November election.

Steele broke off contact with the FBI sometime between October 31, 2016, and the election on November 8, Simpson said, because Steele concluded that the information he had given to the FBI was not elevated to the highest levels of the bureau and was not being vigorously pursued.

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"I understand Chris severed his relationship with the FBI out of concern that he didn't know what was happening inside the FBI and there was a concern that the FBI was being manipulated for political ends by the Trump people", Mr Simpson said.

The dossier, commissioned by the firm Fusion GPS during the 2016 presidential election campaign, was compiled by a former British spy named Christopher Steele. The dossier was published by Buzzfeed.

Simpson also said Steele severed his contacts with the FBI before the election following disclosures that the bureau's inquiry had found no connection between Trump campaign and Russian Federation and concerns that it was being "manipulated for political ends by the Trump people". He has also talked to the House and Senate intelligence committees.

"It's a false allegation", he said.

Trump has derided the dossier as a politically motivated hit job. The memos are field reports of real interviews that Chris's network conducted and there's nothing phony about it.

"We can argue about what's prudent and what's not, but it's not a fabrication", he said.

At the time RPC, the United Kingdom law firm representing Mr Steele, declined to comment. But he testified that the two cases were entirely separate, and did not influence one another.

The emergence of the dossier - containing a series of lurid claims that the Russians had gathered compromising material on the president prior to his election campaign - caused outrage in the Trump camp. Simpson said he was unaware of that meeting at the time it occurred.

During Simpson's interview in August, a Republican staffer pressed him further on this claim, and Simpson's answers were vague. "It was a long history of associations with people accused of involvement in criminal activity".

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