Politics

Trump On Russian Hacking: ‘Why Wasn’t This Brought Up Before Election’

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Eric Lieberman Managing Editor
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President-elect Donald Trump questions the idea that Russia interfered with the 2016 U.S. presidential race, specifically asking “Why wasn’t this brought up before election?”

The CIA concluded in an analysis recently that Russia intervened in the electoral process in order to increase the chances of a Trump victory.

President Barack Obama ordered a full review of Russian involvement in the election roughly a few days ago, after several members of Congress petitioned for an executive brief last week.

“The President has directed the Intelligence Community to conduct a full review of what happened during the 2016 election process. It is to capture lessons learned from that and to report to a range of stakeholders,” White House Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Adviser Lisa Monaco said at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast, according to CNN. (RELATED: Obama Says ‘No Serious Person’ Could Rig An Election Even After Several Gov’t Hacks)

Trump seems to find the timing of the review suspicious to say the least.

“These are the same people that said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. 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,'” Trump’s transition team said in a statement, according to The Washington Post.

The FBI’s investigations appear to differ with the CIA’s conclusions. “They wanted to sow discord and undermine our systems. It’s clear not even the Russians thought he would win,” one law enforcement official said, according to CNN. (RELATED: FBI Director Comey: Russia Can’t Hack U.S. Election System Because It’s So ‘Clunky’)

Other officials also showed some degree of doubt of the CIA’s report, adding that the assessment wasn’t definitive.

“Some people in that briefing heard what they wanted to hear. We just gave them the facts and it’s up to the policy makers to do what they want with it,” a U.S. intelligence official explained.

In an interview with Fox News Sunday, Trump said the Democrats were pushing “ridiculous” reports.

“It’s just another excuse. I don’t believe it,” said Trump. ” … Every week it’s another excuse. We had a massive landslide victory, as you know, in the Electoral College.”

Republican Sen. John McCain contradicted these claims, saying on the same day “I don’t know what to make of it, because it is clear the Russians interfered.”

“Now, whether they intended to interfere to the degree that they were trying to elect a certain candidate, I think that is a subject of investigation,” McCain continued on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”

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