Russian Federation investigation: The 'collusion issue is still open', says Senate intelligence chairman

Report: Russian-linked Facebook ads targeted Wisconsin in the 2016 campaign

Richard Burr, R-North Carolina, said that "the issue of collusion is still open" regarding the committee's ongoing investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 US presidential election.

"We continue to investigate both intelligence and witnesses...."

"It seems that the overall theme of the Russian involvement in the USA election was to create chaos at every level", he said.

Aside from oversight of the intelligence assessment, the probe includes an ongoing look into any collusion by either campaign with the Kremlin during the 2016 election, as well as ongoing Russian active measures.

Facebook won't publicly release the roughly 3,000 ads linked to Russian Federation on its platform despite calls to do so by the US Senate Intelligence Committee on Wednesday, a person close to the company told Business Insider.

Burr said on Wednesday that the Senate panel had made several attempts to contact Steele and to meet him and "those offers have gone unaccepted". "I think they've got some more work to do and I'm pleased to say I think they're out doing that work now".

The committee has been examining how fake accounts on Facebook and Twitter were used by Russians to promote propaganda and misinformation during the 2016 election. Some of the Russian-bought Facebook ads specifically targeted swing states like Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio and Florida, as well as other states whose Electoral College votes were not truly contested during the election, a source familiar with the matter told CNN.

Twitter will also appear in front of the committees on Thursday.

More news: Las Vegas Shooter Wired $100000 to Philippines Last Week

Facebook chief security officer Alex Stamos, in a blog post written last month, said it found about $100,000 in ad spending from 2015 through 2017 linked to accounts that "likely operated out of Russian Federation".

The Senate intelligence committee is one of three congressional panels that are investigating Russian election meddling and possible collusion, in addition to Mueller's investigation.

But he added that it "had hit a wall" in its efforts to talk to Christopher Steele, the former United Kingdom intelligence officer whose reports on allegations of active collusion involving Trump himself have become part of the continuing investigations being conducted by the Senate, House of Representatives, and the special counsel, Robert Mueller.

Google officials said in a statement Friday that they are looking for evidence of Russian meddling within their system, but have not announced any findings.

"We have interviewed everybody who had a hand or a voice into the creation of the intelligence community assessment", Burr said.

Burr and Warner may divulge more information about social media's role in the election.

It has accepted invitations to testify at hearings on Russian interference in front of House and Senate intelligence committees.

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