Russian hacking serious issue but no select committee needed to probe it: McConnell
Iran Press TV
Tue Dec 20, 2016 2:30PM
US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said there is no need to form a Senate select committee to investigate the alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 US presidential election.
In an interview with Kentucky Educational Television McConnell broadcast on Monday, McConnell called the purported Russian hacking a "serious issue," but added that it "doesn't require" a special committee.
"We have a Senate Intelligence Committee and a House Intelligence Committee, run by knowledgeable, responsible people," the Kentucky Republican said.
"There's no question that the Russians were messing around in our election. It is a matter of genuine concern and it needs to be investigated," he stated.
"In the Senate, we're gonna investigate that in what we call regular order," he continued.
McConnell said the Senate Intelligence Committee is "fully capable of handling this" issue.
According to reports, the FBI has agreed with a CIA assessment that Russia deliberately intervened in the November 8 election through cyber operations to help Donald Trump win the White House.
Both FBI Director James Comey and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper are in agreement with the CIA analysis, The Washington Post reported on Friday.
Seizing on these conclusions, some lawmakers have pressed for a select committee investigation into Moscow's alleged meddling.
On Sunday, Senators John McCain and Chuck Schumer called for a bipartisan select committee to investigate Russia's alleged role in hacking emails related to Democratic organizations and operatives.
President-elect Trump has dismissed the intelligence community's assessment as "ridiculous."
McConnell during the interview on Monday said if Russia were trying to help elect Trump, they made a "bad investment."
"Because look at who he is picking for his Cabinet," he said.
Washington first publicly accused Moscow of a campaign of cyber operations against American political organizations in October but did not attribute motives at the time.
At a year-end press conference on Friday, President Barack Obama all but named Russian President Vladimir Putin as behind Moscow's alleged attempts to influence the election and vowed retaliation.
"Not much happens in Russia without Vladimir Putin," he said. "This happened at the highest levels of the Russian government."
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