Russia has been an ongoing story in the 2016 election
With plenty of pundits and intelligence sources blaming various hacks and leaks on Putin , usually without offering any concrete proof. U.S. President Barack Obama has ordered the intelligence community to conduct a full review of “hacking-related activity aimed at disrupting the 2016 U.S. presidential election.” After his announcement Friday, two leading U.S. newspapers — The New York Times and The Washington Post — reported Russia intervened in the recent U.S. presidential election to help Donald Trump win.
The Times reported Russians hacked the computers of both the Republican National Committee and the Democratic National Committee, but only released damaging material from the DNC. “We now have high confidence that they hacked the DNC and the RNC and conspicuously released no documents” from the RNC, an unnamed senior Obama administration official speaking about the Russians, told The Times. Also and The Washington Post reported the CIA believes Russia intervened in the election to help Trump win.
Intelligence agencies have identified individuals with connections to the Russian government who provided WikiLeaks with thousands of hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee and others, including Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, according to U.S. officials. Those officials described the individuals as actors known to the intelligence community and part of a wider Russian operation to boost Trump and hurt Clinton’s chances.
But president-elect Donald Trump’s transition team slammed the CIA following reports the agency has concluded that Russia intervened in the election to help him win
“These are the same people that said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction,” the transition said in a terse, unsigned statement.
“The election ended a long time ago in one of the biggest Electoral College victories in history. It’s now time to move on and ‘Make America Great Again.'”
The transition team’s reference to the agency’s most humiliating recent intelligence misfire — over its conclusion that Iraq under Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction — threatens to cast an early cloud over relations between the Trump White House and the CIA, whose assessments he’ll need to make monumental decisions. On Friday, the Post cited US officials as saying that Intelligence agencies have identified individuals with connections to the Russian government who provided WikiLeaks with thousands of hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee and others, including Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, according to U.S. officials. Those officials described the individuals as actors known to the intelligence community and part of a wider Russian operation to boost Trump and hurt Clinton’s chances.
Senate Democrats responded to the news Friday and Saturday by calling on the Intelligence community to turn over to Congress as much relevant information on the subject of Russian hacking to Congress.
“That any country could be meddling in our elections should shake both political parties to their core,” incoming Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement. “Senate Democrats will join with our Republican colleagues next year to demand a congressional investigation and hearings to get to the bottom of this.”
Trump has repeatedly said there is no evidence to suggest that President Vladimir Putin’s Russia, with which he has vowed to improve relations, played a nefarious role in the US election.
“I don’t believe it. I don’t believe they interfered,” Trump said in an interview for the latest issue of Time magazine, adding that he thought intelligence community accusations about Russian interventions in the election were politically motivated.