President-Elect Donald Trump 'Prepared to Listen and Understand' Intel on Russia, Spokesman Says
Sean Spicer made the comments this morning on ABC News' "Good Morning America."
January 6, 2017, 12:26 PM
• 4 min read
-- President-elect Donald Trump is "prepared to listen and understand" how U.S. intelligence agencies determined the attempted interference of Russian and other foreign entities in U.S. elections, incoming White House press secretary Sean Spicer said today.
Trump has publicly and repeatedly cast doubt on the intelligence community's conclusive statements that Russia directed hacks into computers of political organizations and individuals involved in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Trump's rebukes prompted President Barack Obama to order a full review of the intelligence concerning Russian interference.
The classified report was delivered to the White House on Thursday and shared with Obama. Trump will meet with intelligence chiefs for a briefing on the report's findings at Trump Tower in New York City today.
James Clapper, the director of national intelligence, said an unclassified version of the report will be released next week.
Spicer said Trump will attend the briefing with an open mind but he will also ask questions about how the intelligence community came to its conclusions based on the evidence, particularly concerning the hacking of emails from the Democratic National Committee (DNC).
"The DNC is saying the FBI never looked at their server. The FBI is saying the DNC never gave them access to their server," Spicer said on ABC's "Good Morning America." "If the server was never looked at, how do you in the intelligence community come to this conclusion? It's a fair question to ask. I think he's going to ask questions like that."
He continued to defend Trump's incredulous stance, saying the president-elect is approaching the issue in a "very logical, methodical way."
"The president-elect has a healthy skepticism of everything and that's important," Spicer said. "He wants to make sure that whatever decisions we make -- whether it's sanctions or actions -- are in the country's best interest."