Congressmen [score]Justin Amash[/score] (R-MI) and [score]Walter Jones[/score] (R-NC) are tired of the media spin and Democrat hype about Donald Trump’s possible connection to Vladimir Putin and Russia. The conservative Representatives have delivered a letter to President Obama requesting a classified briefing that would lay out the supposed “evidence” that the CIA continues to whisper about. The continued leaks suggesting impropriety, but refusing to offer evidence is angering many conservatives and frustrating Donald Trump’s supporters. Hopefully, Republicans in Congress can force the Obama administration to either present the evidence of their whispered conspiracies or stop slandering our President-elect.
Today, Rep. Walter Jones and I sent a letter to Pres. Barack Obama requesting a classified briefing on any evidence concerning Russia’s alleged interference in the recent presidential election:
December 19, 2016
The Honorable Barack Obama
President of the United States
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
Dear Mr. President:
Recent reports citing anonymous administration officials suggest that some intelligence agencies believe the Russian government interfered in the U.S. presidential election with the intention of aiding the campaign of President-elect Donald Trump. The reports do not detail specific evidence to support these assertions, and some reports suggest there are disagreements among intelligence officials.
Shortly after the initial reporting, the chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence requested an urgent briefing to resolve contradictions between these new allegations and information previously provided to the committee. The chairman’s request was quickly denied, followed by a statement from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) that Congress will not be briefed until a review you requested has been completed. Less than two days later, with no congressional briefing scheduled, you took to NPR to announce retaliatory action against Russia for “impacting the integrity of our elections.”
It is incumbent upon the executive branch to keep Congress apprised of hostile foreign actions in a timely manner, and once an allegation has been made public, it is reckless to allow evidence-free assertions to serve as Congress’s and the public’s only source of information. Members of Congress must be briefed on any evidence the intelligence community has gathered so that we may weigh the evidence and evaluate the conclusions of the separate agencies. Although the ODNI claims the administration has previously briefed members and staff on this issue, those briefings were provided only to a select group, and the information was not disseminated to most of Congress.
In light of the conflicting information coming from your administration, the lack of public evidence, and the retaliation against Russia that is apparently already under development, Congress cannot wait to be briefed on this matter. Accordingly, we request that a classified briefing on the evidence being used to support these claims be made available to all members of Congress immediately.
Justin Amash (MI-03)
Member of Congress
Walter Jones (NC-03)
Member of Congress