WASHINGTON – Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today released a letter from Director of National Intelligence (DNI) John Ratcliffe. DNI Ratcliffe responded to Graham’s request for intelligence community information regarding the FBI’s handling of Crossfire Hurricane.
DNI Ratcliffe provided the following declassified information to the committee:
- “In late July 2016, U.S. intelligence agencies obtained insight into Russian intelligence analysis alleging that U.S. Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton had approved a campaign plan to stir up a scandal against U.S. Presidential candidate Donald Trump by tying him to Putin and the Russians' hacking of the Democratic National Committee. The IC does not know the accuracy of this allegation or the extent to which the Russian intelligence analysis may reflect exaggeration or fabrication.”
- “According to his handwritten notes, former Central Intelligence Agency Director Brennan subsequently briefed President Obama and other senior national security officials on the intelligence, including the ‘alleged approval by Hillary Clinton on July 26, 2016 of a proposal from one of her foreign policy advisors to vilify Donald Trump by stirring up a scandal claiming interference by Russian security services.’”
- “On 07 September 2016, U.S. intelligence officials forwarded an investigative referral to FBI Director James Comey and Deputy Assistant Director of Counterintelligence Peter Strzok regarding ‘U.S. Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's approval of a plan concerning U.S. Presidential candidate Donald Trump and Russian hackers hampering U.S. elections as a means of distracting the public from her use of a private mail server.’”
“I appreciate DNI Ratcliffe responding to my request for any information concerning all things Russia in the 2016 campaign, not just alleged Trump-Russia involvement.
“Director Ratcliffe will make this information available in a classified setting. I will try to review the material as early as today.
“This latest information provided by DNI Ratcliffe shows there may have been a double standard by the FBI regarding allegations against the Clinton campaign and Russia. Whether these allegations are accurate is not the question. The question is did the FBI investigate the allegations against Clinton like they did Trump? If not, why not? If so, what was the scope of the investigation? If none, why was that?
“I look forward to speaking with Director Comey about this latest information, and many other topics, at tomorrow’s hearing.”