The Washington Post just dropped a story that Russia is allegedly trying to interfere in the 2020 election to help Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT).
This comes the day before the Nevada caucuses, in which Sanders has a big lead.
Sanders acknowledged that he had been apprised last month by U.S. officials about the concern that Russia might be trying to interfere.
From NY Post:
“The intelligence community is telling us they are interfering in this campaign right now, in 2020,” Sanders added. “I say to Mr. Putin, if elected president, trust me, you are not going to be interfering in American elections.”
Sanders said he was briefed about the Kremlin’s attempts to intervene in the 2020 election last month and questioned the timing of the story.
“I’ll let you guess about one day before the Nevada caucus,” said Sanders. “Why do you think it came out? It’s The Washington Post? Good friends.”
Sanders has accused the WaPo of being biased against him in the past.
According to Free Beacon:
Vox reported last year that WaPo owner Jeff Bezos asked fellow billionaire Michael Bloomberg if he would run for president, several months before Bloomberg announced his candidacy.
It is unclear if “good friends” is a reference to Bezos and Bloomberg or to others, and the Sanders campaign did not respond to a request for comment.
Of course the WaPo report had no real details about how this Russian interference was supposedly happening. But notice how the Trump administration advised Sanders (as opposed to surveilling him and trying to investigate a political opponent).
This comes after similarly interestingly timed report from the New York Times that Russia was supposedly trying to interfere on behalf of President Donald Trump.
Both CNN’s Jake Tapper and CBS’ Catherine Herridge cast doubt on those reports, saying that the actual intelligence didn’t really say that.
What is clear is that Russia and other entities are always trying to be divisive and set people against each other. What is clear is that media seems to have convenient articles against both Sanders and Trump just as the Democratic debate revealed Bloomberg imploding and most of the Democratic candidates just being awful.
Fiona Hill said one thing that rang true that a lot of the media tuned out, as the Washington Examiner observes.
Fiona Hill, the National Security Council’s former Russia expert and a Ukraine impeachment witness, testified last year that the Russians sought to hurt both Trump and Clinton in 2016. “The goal of the Russians was really to put whoever became the president … under a cloud,” she said.
“They seed misinformation. They seed doubt. They have everybody questioning the legitimacy of a presidential candidate, be it President Trump or potentially President [Hillary] Clinton, that they would pit one side of our electorate against the other, that they would pit one party against the other,” Hill said.
Former House Intel Chair Trey Gowdy summed up the media reports in blasting the leak to the New York Times.
From Washington Examiner:
“No. 1: I don’t know anyone who really thinks that Russia prefers Donald Trump to win over ‘comrade’ Sanders,” Gowdy told Fox News. “I don’t know a soul that really thinks Russia wants Donald Trump to be the president instead of the guy that honeymooned in Russia.” [….]
“No. 2: Is this the same intelligence community that told us it was a spontaneous reaction to a video in Libya and the same intelligence community that promised us weapons of mass destruction, and the same intelligence community that relied on the dossier?”
“They gather information, and they make assessments,” he said. “Then, they give those assessments, but, unfortunately, you give them to people like Adam Schiff, who leak like sieves. This never should have been made public, and that’s why the president is upset, not at what the intelligence community has found but the fact that Adam Schiff has a beeline to the New York Times when it’s negative information about Donald Trump.”