On Wednesday morning, Congressman Mark Meadows, the chairman of the Conservative House Freedom Caucus, went on Twitter to target Democrats in the House, including leftist California congressman Eric Swalwell, who had preached incessantly that President Trump had colluded with Russia in the 2016 presidential election campaign. Meadows wrote, “For Adam Schiff, Eric Swalwell, + Dems claiming for 2 years they’ve seen 'collusion' evidence, how about this. Let’s declassify all evidence you say exists, and ALSO declassify the underlying documents that 'justified' the investigation. (Spoiler: There is no collusion evidence.)”
90 minutes later, Swalwell loftily replied that Meadows should have contacted him via phone or in person, patronizing, “Next time @ me. You also have my cell phone number & see me every day at work. If you’re serious, you know how to find me. And you can show you’re serious by asking @realDonaldTrump to release the #MuellerReport.”
On Thursday, Meadows responded by slamming the door, tweeting, “I’m for letting Americans see it all, Congressman. Your evidence and mine. Only difference is—you never had any collusion evidence to start with. And what’s worse, I think you know that. See you on Monday.”
Swalwell has been making noise about Trump’s supposed connections to Russia for some time; his website states:
Despite Russia’s harmful national interests against the U.S., and its human rights violations around the world, President Trump and his team are directly and indirectly tied to Russia.
Throughout the 2016 presidential election, President Trump not only refused to criticize Russian President Vladimir Putin, but was even friendly and accommodating in his remarks. In his own words, President Trump called President Putin “highly respected.” More recently, President trump put the U.S. on equal moral footing with Russia when responding to Bill O’Reilly’s question about Putin being a "killer," saying "We've got a lot of killers... you think our country's so innocent?" This is absolutely false moral equivalence, and unheard of for the President of the United States to insult and demean the country he leads.
President Trump has also surrounded himself with people who do business with and are sympathetic to Russia. The New York Times reported that members of Trump’s 2016 campaign and other Trump associates had frequent contact with senior Russian intelligence officials throughout the campaign … Not only does his past and current team have ties to Russia, but the President himself also does. He has traveled to Russia extensively, done business there often, and has ties to Russian interests.
On March 19, when he was asked on MSNBC whether Trump colluded with the Russians, he answered:
Yes. The president knew the Russians were seeking to help him. So he went out as a candidate, invited them to hack more, did not tell his family not to take any of these meetings, was told by Roger Stone that WikiLeaks, a Russian cut-out, was also going to be putting out materials damaging to his opponent, and he went on the stage and said, "I lover WikiLeaks." This is circumstantial evidence which in a court of law can be treated as the same as direct evidence. Yes, he colluded. I don't think that's a hard question to answer at all.
Earlier this week, even after the news was released that the Mueller report found no evidence of Trump colluding with Russia, Swalwell told MSNBC:
I have seen the Trump campaign for myself and others and to that, I would say the only person who has made false statements about Russia is Donald Trump. I stand by what I said about seeing evidence of collusion. If he has a problem with that, he can sue me. And I promise you I would win in court. As to the counterintelligence mission that we have, we need to know whether any U.S. person, whether it's on a campaign, a transition or an administration has been compromised or did seek to work with or did work with the Russians, and that's separate from a criminal investigation.