In a letter to Sen. Lindsey Graham, chair of the Judiciary Committee, published just hours before the Trump-Biden debate, Ratcliffe provided information from reports that Russian services had discovered and approved a plan for Hillary Clinton’s campaign. to “trigger a scandal” against Trump by linking him to Russia’s involvement in the election.
These intelligence reports were rejected by Special Prosecutor Robert S. Mueller, but also by the Senate Intelligence Committee, and they were disclosed despite the objections of intelligence officials.
Ratcliffe cites a July 26, 2016 report and notes from the former CIA director that President Obama was briefed on a plan by Hillary Clinton to discredit Trump and divert public attention from using a private mail account. . At the same time, the director of national intelligence services, confirmed in May this year, mentions that on September 7, 2016, FBI Director James Comey received the report for an investigation.
The New York Times reports that John Ratcliffe held a closed-door briefing for Republican Senator Graham on Tuesday night on the sources of the declassified reports.
Ratcliffe, a former member of Congress for Texas and a supporter of the US president, had previously said that “the analysis of Russian intelligence services can denote exaggerations or fabrications.”
Before the letter was published, he reacted to Democrats’ criticism by stating: “Let’s be clear, this is not about Russian misinformation and has not been assessed as such by the intelligence community. I will inform the Congress about the sources and methods by which the data were obtained in the following days “.
In the letter, however, he states that US agencies “do not know the accuracy of this accusation or the extent to which the analysis of Russian intelligence services may reflect exaggerations or fabrications.”
James Comey testifies before the Senate Judiciary committee on September 30.
Comey, Peter Strzok, John Brennan, Obama, and Biden have a lot to answer for. https://t.co/Mh1uCM3hZZ
— Steve Guest (@SteveGuest) September 29, 2020
Democrats have denounced a very clear politicization of intelligence agencies in the Trump administration,
“Ratcliffe is willing to rely on unverified information from Russia to instill a political scandal – a shocking abdication of his responsibilities to the country,” said Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden, a member of the Senate intelligence committee, according to The Independent.
The information released by Ratcliffe refers to the FBI’s “Crossfire Hurricane” investigation in 2016 and 2017 regarding the links between Trump’s campaign and Russian officials. FBI Director James Comey testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday.
“Russia’s interference in the elections has been real, strong and unprecedented in magnitude. She was personally authorized by Putin to discredit Clinton and promote Trump’s election chances. The evidence is indisputable, “said Nick Shapiro, former chief of staff to former CIA Director John Brennan. However, he denounced Ratcliffe’s move as politicizing and overriding his duties.