Nunes secretly recorded at fundraiser: We have to protect Trump from Mueller

Conditions at a compound in rural New Mexico where 11 children were taken into protective custody for their own health and safety after a raid by authorities are shown in this

The audio, released by MSNBC's Rachel Maddow and recorded at a closed-door California fundraiser, shows Nunes admitting that collusion with a foreign government is a crime before offering a very narrow definition of that crime.

"So if we actually vote to impeach, OK, what that does is that triggers the Senate then has to take it up", he said, explaining that it could take away from other priorities of Congress.

"If Sessions won't un-recuse and Mueller won't clear the president, we're the only ones, which is really the danger", he said on the recording.

Nunes, who chairs the House intelligence committee, has been targeted by Democrats as he has expanded the inquiry into Russian meddling in the 2016 election to include the Obama administration's surveillance of the Trump campaign. They've unearthed some of his crimes, they're looking for more crimes, but you have Devin Nunes bragging about trying to stop the investigation against Putin and Russia's interference in American democracy. That's why I keep-thank you for saying that, by the way-we have to keep all these, we have to keep the majority.

A spokesman for Mr Nunes responded angrily saying: "It's unsurprising to see the left-wing media spin Chairman Nunes' routine observations as some nefarious plot".

A member of Fuse Washington paid to attend a Republican fundraiser last week where Mr Nunes made his remarks.

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Those priorities include pushing Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, through Senate confirmation, and potentially making another run at impeaching Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

But Nunes said that resistance to Rosenstein's impeachment was mostly about scheduling. "It's a matter of, it's a matter of timing", he added.

"I've said publicly Rosenstein deserves to be impeached", he said. I mean, so, I don't think you're gonna get any argument from most of our colleagues.

The California 22nd Congressional District congressman was apparently pitching himself and the Republican Party at large as a buffer for Trump, who, among several members of his election campaign, is a subject in the special counsel Robert Mueller's Russian Federation investigation. "But ultimately let's say the Portuguese came and brought her some stolen emails, and she chose to release those". Because somebody stole the emails, gave 'em to Cathy, Cathy released 'em.

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"So it's not a matter that any of us like Rosenstein".

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