Senate Intelligence Committee Leaders Say Russians Helped Trump Get Elected, Hurt Hillary Clinton
On Wednesday, top officials from both parties who serve on the Senate Intelligence Committee endorsed the U.S. intelligence community’s conclusion that Russia meddled in the 2016 election to help President Donald Trump and to sabotage Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
Senate Intelligence Committee: Russia Helped Trump In 2016 Election
Many Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee have questioned this assessment, citing “significant intelligence tradecraft failings” on the part of other intelligence groups in the now year-long Russia investigation, according to a report the Committee recently filed.
“Committee staff have spent 14 months reviewing the sources, tradecraft, and analytic work, and we see no reason to dispute the conclusions,” Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr, a Republican from North Carolina, said in a statement. There is no doubt that Russia undertook an unprecedented effort to interfere with our 2016 elections.”
Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia, the committee’s top Democrat, added that the Russians also hurt Clinton’s bid for president.
California Congressman Adam Schiff, the leading Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, agreed with the Senate Intelligence Committee’s conclusions.
The House Intelligence panel has developed an increasingly tense relationship with the Department of Justice and the FBI over their stance on the Russia probe, which Trump has repeatedly called a “witch hunt.”
Special counsel Robert Mueller is leading his own inquiry into Russian meddling in the election, and is also investigating whether or not Trump committed obstruction of justice.
Many of Trump’s closest Republican allies in Congress have repeatedly recognized that Russia intervened in the 2016 election, though not all have said they believe the country’s intent was to get Trump elected. They have speculated that instead, the Russians simply intended to create chaos in American political institutions.
A coordinated report released earlier this year by several intelligence agencies including the FBI, CIA and NSA stated that Russian President Vladimir Putin himself had “ordered an influence campaign in 2016,” referring to the American presidential election.
In April, Trump jumped on Twitter to denounce the Russia probe, and cited the House Intelligence panel’s findings that there was no evidence to support claims of collusion or that the Russians interfered in the 2016 election in any way.
The Senate Intelligence Committee is scheduled to release a report on the Intelligence Community Assessment’s (ICA) conclusions sometime over the next few weeks.
Top intelligence officials have warned that Russia may intervene again in November’s midterm elections.