Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper says the Watergate scandal 'pales' in comparison to the investigation of U.S. President Donald Trump and alleged links between his campaign and Russia. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) The Watergate scandal "pales" in comparison to events in Washington surrounding U.S. President Donald Trump and alleged links between his campaign and Russia, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said on Wednesday (June 7). The break-in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters in the Watergate Hotel in Washington in 1972, and subsequent cover-up, brought down former Republican U.S. President Richard Nixon in 1974. Clapper's comments, made while speaking to reporters in Canberra, Australia's capital, comes before a highly anticipated testimony by sacked FBI director James Comey before the Senate intelligence committee on Thursday (June 8). The committee is examining whether Trump's campaign colluded with Russian officials to interfere in the U.S. presidential election. Trump in May removed Comey as director of FBI, despite a U.S. Justice Department probe into contacts between presidential aides and Russia, raising the spectre of political interference in the investigation. Trump has called the probe a "witch hunt" and said there was no collusion between his campaign and Russia. Clapper said he will be an interested observer for any "smoking gun" evidence.