Tags: Donald Trump | Russia | pete king | donald trump | russia | election | hacking

Rep. Pete King: Intelligence 'Suddenly' Says Russia Favored Trump

(Fox News)

By    |   Friday, 06 Jan 2017 01:25 PM

Rep. Pete King said Friday he does believe Russians were involved in hacking the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton's campaign chairman John Podesta.

However, he's not sure why the intelligence community has "suddenly" decided it was to favor eventual President-elect Donald Trump.

"We were hearing this over a year ago," King, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, told Fox News' "America's Newsroom." "At every stage of the way they were saying there was no indication that the Russians were favoring one candidate over another."

But a month after the election, that changed, and The Washington Post and The New York Times started reporting that the intelligence committee had decided the Russians favored Trump.

"They never gave us any explanation for that at all, and we're still waiting," the New York Republican told show co-anchor Martha MacCallum. "Hopefully we'll get it,"

The leaks reported in a Washington Post article on Friday were "not a trivial matter," said King.

"This is supposed to be top secret classified information that they won't give to the intelligence committee but leaking to the press," King said. "I think there should be a federal investigation how it was leaked out."

A month ago, when the talk started about the Russians favoring Trump, the House Intelligence Committee invited investigators in for a briefing, but they refused to come in, said King, expressing frustration that the information has instead been given to the press.

Meanwhile, it was known all along that the Russians wanted to disrupt the election, since "before Donald Trump was even a serious contender, certainly before he was the nominee," King said, discounting reports saying Russians were cheering when Trump defeated Clinton.

"Anything they showed on Election Day that was different from what people expected, the Russians would have been happy about it," King said. "If there was a much higher turnout or lower turnout they would have tried to pat themselves on the back and claim a victory. That to me means absolutely nothing other than the fact that they feel that they contributed to disrupting an election and they were going to claim a victory, no matter what."

And if showing Russians cheering Trump's victory is all there is to go on, "that's a terrible way for the intelligence community or anyone in there to try to disparage the victory of Donald Trump," King said.

In his briefing before a Senate committee on Thursday, the director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, said Russia had staged the largest propaganda campaign he'd ever seen, indicating that there was even more going on than just email hacking.

King said Clapper was likely referring to the dissemination of fake news stories, but that's something the Russians, and before that, the Soviet Union, has been doing since the 1940s.

"There are thousands and thousands of times a day the Russians, Chinese, Iranians are hacking into various parts of American society," King said, and Republicans have been demanding for years that the president take action, separately from the election and also including it.

"The fact is the president was going out of his way to curry favor with the Russians, and that's why he killed Mitt Romney in 2012," King said. "Suddenly now they're acting like it's the end of the world."

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Rep. Pete King said Friday he does believe Russians were involved in hacking the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton's campaign chairman John Podesta.
pete king, donald trump, russia, election, hacking
Friday, 06 Jan 2017 01:25 PM
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