While President Obamaannounced on Friday that he was ordered a full probe into Russian election hackers, a recent eye-opening Washington Post report says that in a secret assessment conducted in September, the CIA concluded that Russia did intervene in the 2016 election to help Donald Trump win the presidency over Hillary Clinton.
“It is the assessment of the intelligence community that Russia’s goal here was to favor one candidate over the other, to help Trump get elected,” an anonymous senior U.S. official briefed on an intelligence presentation made to U.S. senators told the newspaper. “That’s the consensus view.”
While the CIA didn’t blame the Kremlin per se, they did find that the hackers had connections to the Russian government.
“Intelligence agencies have identified individuals with connections to the Russian government who provided WikiLeaks with thousands of hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee and others, including Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, according to U.S. officials.Those officials described the individuals as actors known to the intelligence community and part of a wider Russian operation to boost Trump and hurt Clinton’s chances,” the Post reported.
In addition to hacking into emails of Democratic organizations, the Russians also hacked the Republican National Committee’s computer systems, according to a different report from The New York Times — but they did not release any of the GOP’s information to the public like they did with the Dems.
As expected, Trump’s camp fired back dismissing the CIA’s report.
“These are the same people that said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction,” the statement said. “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.’ ”
However, CNN writes that upon hearing the news of the CIA’s findings, Senate Dems are “calling on the Intelligence community to turn over to Congress as much relevant information on the subject of Russian hacking to Congress.”
“That any country could be meddling in our elections should shake both political parties to their core,” incoming Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement.
He concluded: “Senate Democrats will join with our Republican colleagues next year to demand a congressional investigation and hearings to get to the bottom of this.”