Politics

Trump Questions Legitimacy Of Russia Hacking Probe

Donald Trump on Tuesday cast doubt on the intelligence community’s claims that the Russian government was involved in cyber attacks against Democrats during the presidential campaign.

Trump also announced, via Twitter, that an intelligence briefing he was set to receive in the early part of the week has been delayed until Friday.

Law enforcement officials disputed that claim, however, telling several news outlets that Trump’s scheduled meeting — which will be held with CIA director John Brennan, FBI director James Comey, National Security Agency director Adm. Michael Rodgers and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper — was always set for Friday.

“The ‘Intelligence’ briefing on so-called ‘Russian hacking’ was delayed until Friday, perhaps more time needed to build a case. Very strange!” Trump wrote.

It is unclear who decided to delay the briefing or why it is being put off. But CNN’s Jim Sciutto reported after Trump issued his tweet that the CIA and Office of the Director of National Intelligence had not been scheduled for Wednesday.

After President Obama announced sanctions against the Russian government last week for the alleged hacking the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign, Trump said that he would be meeting with intelligence officials to get brought up to speed on the probe.

While many Republican lawmakers say they believe Russia is behind the cyber attacks, Trump has so far avoided giving a definitive answer on whether he believes the Kremlin was behind the hacks.

Trump said at his New Year’s Eve party over the weekend that it would be “unfair” for the Obama administration to allege Russia’s involvement in the cyber attacks “if they don’t know” for certain that the Kremlin was involved.

“I know a lot about hacking. And hacking is a very hard thing to prove. So it could be somebody else,” Trump said.

“I also know things that other people don’t know, and so they cannot be sure of the situation,” he added.

When asked what he knows about the hacking claims that the public does not, Trump responded: “You’ll find out on Tuesday or Wednesday.”

CNN also reported Tuesday evening, citing a Trump transition official, that the Republican has no immediate plans to publicly discuss the cyber attack allegations.

This article has been updated with new details.

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