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Pelosi Wants Officials to Brief Congress on Russian Bounty Intelligence

U.S. News Chloe 1weeks ago (06-29) 6Views 0Comments

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Pelosi Wants Officials to Brief Congress on Russian Bounty Intelligence

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) wants intelligence officials to brief the House of Representatives on intelligence about alleged Russian bounties.

Citing anonymous officials, several news outlets claimed Russians have been paying Afghans to assassinate American soldiers.

U.S. officials later said the intelligence was suspect and that neither President Donald Trump nor Vice President Mike Pence was briefed on it.

“The President now denies being briefed, but the Administration has not denied the existence of the intelligence,” Pelosi wrote in a June 29 letter (pdf) to Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe and CIA Director Gina Haspel.

“The questions that arise are: was the President briefed, and if not, why not, and why was Congress not briefed. Congress and the country need answers now,” she continued.

“I therefore request an interagency brief for all House Members immediately. Congress needs to know what the intelligence community knows about this significant threat to American troops and our allies and what options are available to hold Russia accountable.”

Lawmakers, including some Republicans, have said in recent days they want answers about the intelligence.

“I expect the Trump Administration to take such allegations seriously and inform Congress immediately as to the reliability of these news reports,” Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said in a statement Saturday.

Pelosi Wants Officials to Brief Congress on Russian Bounty Intelligence President Donald Trump delivers a speech following a tour of Fincantieri Marinette Marine in Marinette, Wis., on June 25, 2020. (Carlos Barria/Reuters)

Trump responded directly to Graham Sunday, telling him on Twitter: “Intel just reported to me that they did not find this info credible, and therefore did not report it to me or @VP.”

Trump said the situation was potentially “another fabricated Russia Hoax,” referring to a myriad of reporters, pundits, and lawmakers claiming there was evidence his campaign colluded with Russia. Those claims were undermined by special counsel Robert Mueller’s team, which found no evidence supporting them.

Ratcliffe said in a rare statement on Saturday from the Office of Director of National Intelligence that he confirmed neither Trump nor Pence were ever briefed on the intelligence alleged in news reports.

“The White House statement addressing this issue earlier today, which denied such a briefing occurred, was accurate. The New York Times reporting, and all other subsequent news reports about such an alleged briefing are inaccurate,” he said in a statement.

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany told reporters Monday at the White House that the intelligence wasn’t verified and that Trump wasn’t personally briefed on it.

“There’s no consensus among the intelligence community and there are, in fact, dissenting opinions some some within it,” she said.

Russian officials have denied the reporting.

Follow Zachary on Twitter: @zackstieber

Focus News: Pelosi Wants Officials to Brief Congress on Russian Bounty Intelligence

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