The U.S. Intelligence community (CIA, FBI and NSA) jointly issued a formal report today stating that Russian President Putin ordered a campaign to influence the U.S. presidential election and help elect Donald Trump. The report states that Russians worked to undermine Hillary Clinton’s candidacy and promote Trump. The entire unclassified version of the report is available to the public on Scribd:
Following is an excerpt from the report, with bold emphasis added:
“We assess with high confidence that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the US presidential election, the consistent goals of which were to undermine public faith in the US democratic process, denigrate Secretary Clinton, and harm her electability and potential presidency.
We further assess Putin and the Russian Government developed a clear preference for President-elect Trump. When it appeared to Moscow that Secretary Clinton was likely to win the election, the Russian influence campaign then focused on undermining her expected presidency.
We also assess Putin and the Russian Government aspired to help President-elect Trump’s election chances when possible by discrediting Secretary Clinton and publicly contrasting her unfavorably to him. All three agencies agree with this judgment. CIA and FBI have high confidence in this judgment; NSA has moderate confidence.
In trying to influence the US election, we assess the Kremlin sought to advance its longstanding desire to undermine the US-led liberal democratic order, the promotion of which Putin and other senior Russian leaders view as a threat to Russia and Putin’s regime.”
The New York Times called the report “a damning and surprisingly detailed account of Russia’s efforts to undermine the American electoral system and Mrs. Clinton in particular,” and says the report “went on to assess that Mr. Putin aspired to help President-elect Trump’s election chances when possible by discrediting Secretary Clinton and publicly contrasting her unfavorably to him.”
At 4:34 a.m. this morning, on the day Trump was due to be briefed by intelligence agencies about the extent of Russian intervention in our election, Trump was tweeting about “The Apprentice”: