Brit Hume blasts James Clapper's 'disturbingly silly' claims about Russian interference

Joanna Estrada
May 25, 2018

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen apparently pushed back today on the intelligence community's findings that Russian Federation wanted Donald Trump to win the 2016 election.

Asked by a reporter whether she had a reason to doubt the January 2017 assessment from the intelligence community, Nielsen said she did not believe she had seen a conclusion that Russian President Vladimir Putin preferred Trump over Clinton in his country's efforts to meddle in the election.

The findings also stated the Central Intelligence Agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the NSA, all agree with the report that Russian Federation interfered in the elections with the goal of making Trump the next president.

Some Republicans in Congress have since disputed the findings, with House Intelligence Committee Republicans alleging that the finding was based on poor analysis.

In a statement to TPM on Tuesday, Department of Homeland Security press secretary Tyler Houlton said that Nielsen "agrees" with the Intelligence Community assessment and "clearly" said Tuesday that the "Russian government unequivocally worked to undermine our democracy" in 2016.

"We've seen them encourage people to go to a protest on one side". Richard Burr, the GOP chairman of the panel.

However, Nielsen also said she had no reason to question any intelligence findings and added that Russian Federation did try to influence USA voters and will continue to do it in the future.

"I do not believe that I've seen that conclusion that specific intent was to help President Trump win", Nielsen insisted.

The report was the first piece of public intelligence issued by the USA government on Russian meddling. "It's an integrity issue of who is saying what and why and how that may or may not affect American behavior". "I think what they are trying to do is to disrupt our belief and our own understanding of what's happening", she said.

"The Secretary has previously reviewed the Intelligence Community's assessment and agrees with it - as she stated today and previously".

Nielsen's admission shocked intelligence experts and some in Congress.

"The intelligence assessment language is nuanced for a reason".

Fox News' analyst Brit Hume criticized former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper's comments about Russian election interference aiding the Trump campaign, calling them "disturbingly silly".

Nielsen responded as though she had never heard of the assessment before.

Ms. Nielsen, who took office after the report's publication, was asked about its findings after a briefing on election security with FBI Director Christopher Wray and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats.

"This report is over a year old, has stood the test of time, was agreed to by the entire Intelligence Community, and was backed up by Senate investigators", he said in a statement.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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