Intelligence officials say Russia intent on disrupting future U.S. elections

- Februari 13, 2018

The Trump administration’s top intelligence officials said during a Capitol Hill hearing Tuesday that Russia is intent on disrupting elections in the United States and elsewhere.

President Donald Trump is facing sharp criticism for failing to act decisively to head off potential attempts by Russia to interfere in the upcoming U.S. midterm elections.

Here are key moments from the hearing with Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, FBI Director Christopher Wray, CIA Director Mike Pompeo and others:

The intelligence community believes Russia will keep spreading false information, according to a written statement by Coats at the hearing.

"At a minimum, we expect Russia to continue using propaganda, social media, false-flag personas, sympathetic spokespeople, and other means of influence to try to exacerbate social and political fissures in the United States," he said.

Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) skewered Trump for not addressing the threat Russian hackers pose to future U.S. elections.

"We’ve had more than a year to get our act together and address the threat posed by Russia and implement a strategy to deter future attacks. But we still do not have a plan," the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee said in his opening statement.

"The president inconceivably continues to deny the threat posed by Russia," Warner said. "He didn’t increase sanctions on Russia when he had a chance to do so. He hasn’t even Tweeted a single concern. This threat demands a whole-of-government response, and that needs to start with leadership at the top."

Kyle Cheney, Martin Matishak and Ayanna Alexander contributed to this report.


 

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