Per CNN, the US intelligence community’s top election security official appears to have overstated the intelligence community’s formal assessment of Russian interference in the 2020 election, omitting important nuance during a briefing with lawmakers earlier this month, three national security officials told CNN.
Per Fox News, contrary to numerous recent media reports, there is no evidence to suggest that Russia is making a specific “play” to boost President Trump’s reelection bid, a U.S. intelligence official told Fox News on Sunday.
In addition, top U.S. election official Shelby Pierson, who briefed Congress on Russian election interference efforts, may have overstated intelligence regarding the issue when speaking to the House Intelligence Committee earlier this month, the source added.
The Wall Street Journal reported last week, citing people familiar with her work, that Pierson “has a reputation for being injudicious with her words and not appreciating the delicate work of corralling federal agencies, technology firms and state election officials to collaborate on election security.”
U.S. intelligence officials have publicly testified only that the Russians have been using “information warfare” ahead of the election. Fox News is told Democrats pressed Pierson on whether Russia was trying to help Trump, and accurate context or perspective to her responses failed to emerge.
Intelligence agencies have made great strides in preventing Russian interference this year, Fox News also was told.
Republican lawmakers who were in the Pierson briefing noted that Trump has taken on Russia in numerous ways, one official present told The Associated Press. The White House has opposed Russia’s major proposed pipeline in Germany, provided deadly arms to Ukraine and accused Russia of violating key arms treaties, among other measures.