Since the CIA claims that Putin hacked the US presidential election on behalf of Donald Trump, there have been repeated reports that the CIA’s assessment was not that of the rest of the intelligence community, and in particular the FBI. Today, however, the FBI and the Director of National Intelligence are both insisting they totally agree with the CIA assessment.
According to CIA Director John Brennan, he met separately with both FBI Director James Comey and DNI James Clapper, and that they came to “a strong consensus” that the CIA narrative of what happened is what they’re all going to agree on.
Interesting, despite the FBI disagreement being a major talking point over the week, the FBI insists they never disagreed with the CIA at all, and that there was no change of any sort in their conclusion that Russia hacked the election directly with an eye toward getting Trump elected.
The FBI was the agency charged with investigating the allegations in the first place, and it remains both unclear how the CIA ended up being the ones who get to draw the official conclusion, and whether any evidence actually exists to support these claims. Indeed, the FBI’s inability to come up with evidence backing these allegations was a reason they were said to be refusing to endorse the CIA position, and led to angry condemnation by Congressional Democrats, who accused Comey of being in league with the Republicans.
From an official perspective, the lack of evidence appears very much beside the point, with President Obama promising to carry out revenge attacks on Russia and everyone in the outgoing administration claiming that the Russian plot was “obvious.”