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‘Hoax Number 7’: Trump Responds To Latest Russia ‘Bombshell’

‘Hoax Number 7’: Trump Responds To Latest Russia ‘Bombshell’
President Trump responded Friday to a series of breathlessly promoted reports by mainstream media outlets about a recent closed-door intelligence briefing on the potential threat of Russian election meddling which has prompted Democratic accusations of Trump supposedly “interfering” with the intelligence process for political purposes. The latest Democrat-hyped “bombshell,” Trump suggested, is yet another Russia-themed “hoax.”
“Another misinformation campaign is being launched by Democrats in Congress saying that Russia prefers me to any of the Do Nothing Democrat candidates who still have been unable to, after two weeks, count their votes in Iowa,” Trump tweeted Friday. “Hoax number 7!”
Another misinformation campaign is being launched by Democrats in Congress saying that Russia prefers me to any of the Do Nothing Democrat candidates who still have been unable to, after two weeks, count their votes in Iowa. Hoax number 7!
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All the “misinformation” buzz began Thursday amid reports by The New York Times and The Washington Post about a congressional intelligence briefing last week concerning Russia’s potential attempt to influence the 2020 election via the promotion of disinformation and discord, as the intelligence community concluded that Russia attempted to do in 2016.
“Lawmakers Are Warned That Russia Is Meddling to Re-elect Trump,” the headline of the Times report on the briefing declared Thursday. The report begins:
Intelligence officials warned House lawmakers last week that Russia was interfering in the 2020 campaign to try to get President Trump re-elected, five people familiar with the matter said, a disclosure to Congress that angered Mr. Trump, who complained that Democrats would use it against him.
The day after the Feb. 13 briefing to lawmakers, the president berated Joseph Maguire, the outgoing acting director of national intelligence, for allowing it to take place, people familiar with the exchange said. Mr. Trump was particularly irritated that Representative Adam B. Schiff, Democrat of California and the leader of the impeachment proceedings, was at the briefing.
During the briefing to the House Intelligence Committee, Mr. Trump’s allies challenged the conclusions, arguing that he had been tough on Russia and that he had strengthened European security.
The Post reported on the briefing in a similar manner, stating that “senior intelligence official told lawmakers that Russia wants to see Trump reelected.”
As highlighted by The Associated Press in its report on the briefing and its fallout, House Democratic leaders Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Intelligence Committee Chairman Schiff sounded the alarm over Trump’s alleged response to the briefing.
“American voters should decide American elections — not Vladimir Putin,” Pelosi tweeted Thursday. “All Members of Congress should condemn the President’s reported efforts to dismiss threats to the integrity of our democracy & to politicize our intel community.”
“We count on the intelligence community to inform Congress of any threat of foreign interference in our elections,” Schiff declared online. “If reports are true and the President is interfering with that, he is again jeopardizing our efforts to stop foreign meddling. Exactly as we warned he would do.”
We count on the intelligence community to inform Congress of any threat of foreign interference in our elections.

If reports are true and the President is interfering with that, he is again jeopardizing our efforts to stop foreign meddling.

Exactly as we warned he would do. https://twitter.com/nytimes/status/1230612487608905729 
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But in an update on the story Friday, CNN’s Jake Tapper, citing an unnamed national security official, said there’s “more to this particular story” (h/t Hot Air).
“A national security official I know and trust pushes back on the way the briefing/ODNI story is being told, and others with firsthand knowledge agree with his assessment,” Tapper reported.
“What’s been articulated in the news is that the intelligence community has concluded that the Russians are trying to help Trump again. But the intelligence doesn’t say that,” the official told Tapper. “The problem is Shelby [Pierson] said they developed a preference for Trump. A more reasonable interpretation of the intelligence is not that they have a preference, it’s a step short of that. It’s more that they understand the president is someone they can work with, he’s a dealmaker. But not that they prefer him over Sanders or Buttigieg or anyone else. So it may have been mischaracterized by Shelby at the House Intel briefing last week.”
“And by the way,” the official added, “both Democrats and Republicans were challenging this at the briefing.”
“The President was upset that he had to hear about an intelligence conclusion from a Member of the House Republicans rather than from the intelligence community,” the source said. “So he was out of joint with Maguire on that process.”

“None of this disputes that Trump desires to replace those who have Intel expertise with partisan loyalists, or dismisses the larger issues and concerns about Russia and how the president seeks help from abroad,” Tapper added. “Just that there seems to be more to this particular story.” (Read the full thread here.)

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