Democrats’ Senate leader hints at intelligence revenge plot on Trump as he says ‘they have six ways from Sunday to get back at you’
- Top Senate Democrat said last week that Trump was ‘dumb’ to take on spy agencies that have the ability to hurt him
- ‘Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday to get back at you,’ he told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow
- Trump got burned today by a leak of that caliber; he says all the information in a dossier or dirt allegedly held by Russia is untrue
- Furious Trump called it ‘fake news’ and slammed intelligence agencies for allowing it to ‘leak’ into public’
- Reports of the document’s existence surfaced on CNN on evening before Trump held major press conference
- Buzzfeed admitted the documents were unverified and contained clear errors – but published it anyway
Senator Chuck Schumer warned Donald Trump a week ago that the intelligence community could retaliate against him for rejecting their assessment that Russia engineered election hacks on Democrats.
The top Senate Democrat said Trump was ‘dumb’ to take on spy agencies that have the ability to access and leak damaging personal information.
‘Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday to get back at you,’ he told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow. ‘So, even for a practical, supposedly hard-nosed businessman, he is being really dumb to do this.’
Schumer said he didn’t know what agents would or could do to Trump. ‘But from what I am told, they are very upset with how he has treated them and talked about them,’ he said.
Trump got burned today by a leak of that caliber. Buzzfeed News and CNN reported on a dossier of dirt, allegedly held by the Russian government, that claimed, among other things, that Trump was secretly taped watching degrading sex acts by prostitutes in Moscow.
Trump issued a categorical denial on Twitter and at a news conference this morning.
He, the Kremlin, and key figures named in an unverified document purporting to reveal salacious details about compromising information the Russians hold are slamming the document’s release as a smear and a ‘fabrication.’
‘Russia has never tried to use leverage over me. I HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH RUSSIA – NO DEALS, NO LOANS, NO NOTHING!’ Trump tweeted Wednesday morning.
‘Russia just said the unverified report paid for by political opponents is ‘A COMPLETE AND TOTAL FABRICATION, UTTER NONSENSE.’ Very unfair!’ he tweeted shortly thereafter.
He also attacked intelligence agencies for ‘allowing it to “leak”‘ saying: ‘Are we living in Nazi Germany.’
‘Does anyone believe that story? I’m also very much of a germophobe by the way,’ he said at a press conference later in the day.
Trump said, ‘It’s all fake news. It’s phony stuff. It didn’t happen. And it was gotten by opponents of ours.’
The incident sets him up for an ugly confrontation with agencies that were passed the file by Republican Senator John McCain.
It was ‘released by maybe the intelligence agencies,’ Trump assessed at his New York presser today. ‘Who knows, it may be the intelligence agencies – which would be a tremendous blot of their record if they did that.’
‘A thing like that should have never been written … and it certainly should never have been released,’ Trump continued.
The documents were published by Buzzfeed, which in its own report said they contained errors and could not be verified. The New York Times and Washington Post both said they had been handed the dossier in the past and did not publish it because they were unable to verify its contents.
Trump’s incoming White House press secretary, Sean Spicer, slammed Buzzfeed as a ‘left-wing blog’ before the president-elect’s news conference, saying the report was ‘totally unsubstantiated.’
Spicer called it a ‘political witch hunt by the media’ and said ‘it’s shameful.’
The president-elect denied the report at the top of his remarks, telling news outlets he said he hasn’t always gotten along with that they went ‘up a notch’ for refusing to demean him.
Russia has already condemned the report. Dmitri S. Peskov, the spokesman for Russian President Vladimir Putin, expressly denied Russia having compromising dirt on Trump, or on rival Hillary Clinton.