Donald Trump's incoming White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer dodged questions about Russia's influence on the election this weekend by claiming that Hillary Clinton is the person who should really be punished.
Last week President Obama enacted sanctions against the Russian government because of their role in hacking the Democratic National Committee in the weeks leading up to the election. The president also kicked 35 Russian diplomats out of the country after reports surfaced that Russian security services have been harassing U.S. diplomats in Europe. On New Year's Eve, Trump was asked about the Russian hacking at an event at his Mar-A-Lago estate and he responded by claiming the he knew more than the CIA about hacking (just like he knows more about ISIS than the generals):
“I know a lot about hacking. And hacking is a very hard thing to prove. So it could be somebody else. And I also know things that other people don’t know, and so they cannot be sure of the situation.”
When he was asked what his big secret was, he said that he would reveal it on Tuesday or Wednesday.
On Sunday morning, Sean Spicer appeared on ABC's This Week where Jonathan Karl asked if the president-elect was ever going to admit that Russia did, in fact, try to influence the election. Spicer responded by saying that Trump still has to sit down and get a full briefing by the intelligence community -- contradicting the president-elect's claim that he knows things that "other people" do not know. Spicer went on to imply that we should worry less about punishing a foreign government for their cyberattacks because....Hillary Clinton:
"Why aren’t we talking about the influence, other influences on the election? Why aren’t we talking about Hillary Clinton getting debate questions ahead of time? That’s a pretty valid attempt to influence an election. Somebody giving her the debate questions and the answers of an election. No, no, no. It’s not hey. We haven’t, no one’s asking those questions. And the fact is is that everyone wants to talk, make Donald Trump admit to certain things. When are we going to start talking about the other side of this. Which is what did Hillary Clinton do to influence the election? Is she being punished in any way?"
He was referring to the revelation that Clinton was given debate questions in advance during the Democratic primary. This information was leaked to Wikileaks by Russia after the DNC email hack. So, Spicer is using information obtained by a foreign government after they attacked an American political party's computer system. Of course, he left out all of that information and failed to explain how exactly Hillary personally influenced an election by receiving unsolicited questions to a debate.
Donald Trump's inability to admit even the smallest of facts he doesn't like is incredibly dangerous. A foreign government attacked our elections and instead of discussing what the president-elect will do to ensure that this does not happen again, his team is trashing Hillary as if the presidential campaign isn't over. Putin is probably sitting back at his desk and stroking himself over his victory. On January 20th, after decades of strained relations, Russia finally has a U.S. president right where they want him: on his knees.
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