Reprinted with permission from Alternet
There’s a bit more clarity now to the story of the briefing to the House Intelligence Committee that may or may not have contributed to acting director of national intelligence Joseph Maguire’s departure from the Trump administration. According to The New York Times, the mysterious briefing that Republicans and impeached President Donald Trump so objected to was about Russia interfering in this election, the 2020 one.
Five people familiar with the matter told the Times that the Feb. 13 briefing included a warning to lawmakers that Russia was interfering to get Trump reelected, a “disclosure that angered Mr. Trump, who complained that Democrats would use it against him,” as opposed to using it to try to secure the election and prevent Russia from mucking about in it again. The Times reports that the next day, Trump “berated Joseph Maguire, the outgoing acting director of national intelligence, for allowing it to take place” and the fact that Rep. Adam Schiff, the committee chairman, was present to hear it was “a particular irritant.”
It’s not too much of stretch to figure out who filled Trump in on all the details of the briefing, as a committee official said that ” members of both parties attended, including Representative Devin Nunes of California, the top Republican on the committee” and that it was indeed about the “integrity of our upcoming elections.” In what’s really not good news for the upcoming election, the Times reports that “Some intelligence officials viewed the briefing as a tactical error, saying that had the official who delivered the conclusion spoken less pointedly or left it out, they would have avoided angering the Republicans.”
Not angering Republicans should not be the intelligence community’s concern at all. Not when they have credible information saying that this election is in jeopardy of Russian interference on behalf of the man who has already been impeached for trying to get another country to do the same.