FBI boss contradicts White House on Porter clearance

FBI Director Christopher Wray on Tuesday publicly disputed the White House's claims that its top staff members weren't aware of the allegations against now-ousted staff secretary Rob Porter until just last week.

Porter abruptly resigned after photos surfaced showing one ex-wife with a black eye. A second ex-wife also claimed Porter was verbally and physically abusive.

"The FBI submitted a partial report on the investigation in question in March and then a completed background investigation in late July," Wray told lawmakers on Capitol Hill. "We administratively closed the file in January and then earlier this month we received some additional information and passed that on as well."

The FBI is the agency charged with clearing Porter because his job entailed handling sensitive information.

The White House has claimed that Porter's clearance was held up by competing offices.

The president has also refused to answer questions about Porter.

In the meantime, CIA Director Mike Pompeo delivered a stern assessment on Russian meddling in American politics. In testimony on Capitol Hill, Pompeo said the agency has seen Russian activity in the lead-up to the 2018 midterm elections as well as interference in the 2016 election.

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats added that the American public needs to know that this interference "is real" and that the country needs to build a system to protect elections from meddling.

"We are not going to allow some Russian to tell us how to vote," Coats said.