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White House Adviser Asked FBI to Refute Russia Story

Susan Walsh
Associated Press
White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Maryland Thursday.

WASHINGTON  — A White House official says chief of staff Reince Priebus asked a top FBI official to help dispute media reports that President Donald Trump's campaign advisers were frequently in touch with Russian intelligence agents during the election.

The official says Priebus' request came after the FBI told the White House it believed a New York Times report describing Trump advisers' contacts with Russia was not accurate. As of Thursday, the FBI had not stated that position publicly.

Priebus' discussion with the FBI's deputy director sparked outrage among some Democrats, who said he was violating policies intended to limit communications between the law enforcement agency and the White House on pending investigations.

The White House official was not authorized to disclose the matter publicly and insisted on anonymity.