Reince Priebus Challenges Chuck Todd’s Sources on Russian Election Hacking


In an appearance on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Republican National Committee chairman and Donald Trump’s pick for chief of staff, Reince Priebus, questioned the sources of a Washington Post story that claimed that both the Republican and Democrat national committees were hacked by Russian intelligence.

According to the Post story, reported separately by The New York Times, the fact that both committees had been hacked and only Democratic National Committee information released to WikiLeaks was part of American intelligence’s assessment that Russia was trying to throw the election to Donald Trump.

However, Priebus told host Chuck Todd that the RNC had not been hacked, throwing the claim into doubt.

“The assessment from the CIA that the actions by the Russian government were disruptive in order to help Donald Trump,” Todd asked Priebus. “Does Donald Trump have confidence in America’s intelligence?”

“Of course he has confidence in America’s intelligence, but we don’t have confidence in The New York Times releasing a report of unnamed sources … of some kind of study that the Washington Post said was inconclusive,” Priebus responded. “The RNC was absolutely not hacked.”

“When the DNC was hacked, we called the FBI. The FBI went through everything, and we were not hacked,” he continued. “If we were not hacked, then where does that story lie?’

When Todd responded skeptically, Priebus said, “I don’t know why you are so hot about this. I mean, the fact of the matter is, you should be happy the RNC wasn’t hacked.”

“The RNC was not hacked, Chuck, and I don’t know of any employee who’s own gmail account that was hacked,” he continued. “I am refuting the specific fact that was made in the article that created this entire firestorm,”

Todd continued to assert that “the CIA has made this assessment,” which drew even more ire from Priebus.

“What I’m asking you, Chuck, tell me what the specific source that you have, other than The New York Times article. What source are you using to be so adamant to get a response from me? What’s your source?” Priebus insisted

“Do you believe, let’s just clear this up, does the president-elect believe that Russia was trying to muddy up, get in involved in the election in 2016?” Todd said.

“Number one you don’t know it, I don’t now it, and there has been no conclusive or specific report to say otherwise. The second thing I would tell you is that, you don’t have any proof that the outcome of the election was changed, forget about who did the hacking, if someone did the hacking.”

Check out the video here. The hacking segment starts about the 4:45 mark.

“Here is what I’m saying. Number one, you don’t have a single source — I’ve given you a source specifically, me, who runs the RNC, to say that the RNC was not hacked. You tell me who the specific source on the other side of this that says the RNC was hacked,” Priebus concluded.

Todd didn’t name one source, and that’s hardly surprising. We don’t expect him to, either. While Todd considered it irrelevant, it is extremely relevant, especially since the reports he was sourcing this from relied on the fact that the RNC had been hacked to prove Russia was in support of Trump.

Todd, of course, has every right to believe what he wants. We just ask him one thing: don’t lecture us about “fake news” ever again. Not after this, anyhow.

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H/T The Daily Caller