Sean Spicer says Trump campaign chairman actually played 'limited role' in campaign

A few hours later, Press Secretary Sean Spicer tried to distance Trump from two members of his inner circle who lost their jobs after their close ties with Russian Federation came to light - former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

"Can you stop interrupting other people", Spicer replied.

During his press conference, a reporter asked Spicer, "Now that we know that there is an ongoing investigation by the FBI, does the president stand by his comments that he's not aware of any contacts that his campaign associates had with Russian Federation during the election?"

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White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer incorrectly diminished the role of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, remarks made at the same time as a House Intelligence Committee hearing investigated whether campaign aides colluded with Russian Federation during last year's presidential race.

Later, Spicer was asked a follow-up regarding Manafort, who worked for the campaign from March-August previous year, and whether or not there was collusion between him or anyone else on the campaign and Russian Federation.

"I heard some names floated around before, that were hangers-on around the campaign", Spicer said of the first half of Comey's testimony. Indeed, Manafort was chairman of Trump's campaign for key stretch last summer surrounding the Republican National Convention - a fact acknowledged at the time by Spicer himself.

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Flynn, meanwhile, was Trump's most prominent military adviser during the campaign from February 2016 onward.

"During the campaign, before the election", AP's Julie Pace specified. The Obama CIA director said so. He was named national security adviser, but resigned from the White House last month after he was found to have misled senior members of the administration about his contacts with Russia's top diplomat to the U.S.

"Right, and I'm not aware of any at this time, but even General Flynn was a volunteer of the campaign". Toward the end of the primary calendar in mid-April, Manafort and Rick Wiley were reportedly given control of the campaign, as campaign manager Corey Lewandowski took on a smaller role.

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The news that Trump's former campaign chairman is wanted for questioning in a Ukrainian corruption case came one day after The New York Times reported that longtime Trump adviser Roger Stone was ordered by the Senate Intelligence Committee not to destroy any documents which might be connected to an investigation of Russian Federation. Flynn stepped down last month following revelations that he'd met with the Russian ambassador to discuss USA sanctions and then mischaracterized the nature of those conversations to Vice President Mike Pence. Spicer falsely claimed that Manafort only operated in the Trump sphere for a short time.

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