U.S. intelligence denounced Russian role in anti-Trump material
Donald Trump tweeted this morning that U.S. intelligence chief James Clapper telephoned him Wednesday to “denounce the false and fictitious report” alleging that Russia had compromising material on the president-elect.
But the characterization by Trump seemingly conflicts with an earlier statement in which Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, said the intelligence community “has not made any judgment” on the reliability of the information it has seen.
“Made up, phony facts. Too bad!” Trump wrote on Twitter today.
Federal officials told media that a respected former British spy hired by Democratic operatives gathered the information, which included allegations that Trump aides held meetings with Russian agents.
"The IC has not made any judgment that the information in this document is reliable, and we did not rely upon it in any way for our conclusions," Clapper said in his statement. "However, part of our obligation is to ensure that policymakers are provided with the fullest possible picture of any matters that might affect national security."
Michael Cohen, a lawyer for Trump, was named in the documents as meeting with the Russians in Prague in August 2016, but he said he has never been to the city in his life.
"A thing like that should have never been written, it should never been had, and it should certainly never have been released," Trump said during his news conference today.