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McConnell rejects special panel for Russian election interferenceallegations

McConnell rejects special panel for Russian election interference allegations
By Alexander Bolton - 12-12-16 10:18 AM EST

Senate Majority Leader Mitch Mcconnell (R-Ky.) on Monday said recent findings by the CIA that the Russian government tied to influence the U.S. presidential election should be investigated by the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Calling the allegations of Russian meddling "disturbing," McConnell said the intelligence panel should take the lead, dismissing calls by Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and others for a special select committee to review the matter.

He said the Intelligence Committee is "more than capable of conducting a complete review of this matter."

"We're going to follow the regular order. It's an important subject and we intend to review it on a bipartisan basis," he said.

McConnell noted that he sits on the panel as an ex officio member and that incoming Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer (N.Y.) will soon join it in the same capacity.

He also said that McCain will be conducting his own review of cybersecurity threats facing the nation as chairman of the Armed Services Committee.

"Sen. McCain and Sen. Burr will both be looking at this issue and doing it on a bipartisan basis," he said, referring to Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr (R-N.C.).

Jason Miller, a spokesman for President-elect Donald Trump, said he was unsure of the last time Trump and McConnell spoke, but dismissed efforts to investigate Russian interference in the election as coming from "people who are bitter their candidate lost."

"This overall narrative, this is clearly an attempt to delegitimize Trump's win," Miller said Monday. "That's what's going on here. First there was the recount nonsense, then the discussion of the popular vote, now it's anonymous sources with conflicting information trying to raise other issues."

-Jonathan Easley contributed.

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McConnell rejects special panel for Russian election interferenceallegations


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