Democratic National Committee interim Chair Donna Brazile says President Obama is incorrect that cyberattacks against the party stopped after he warned Russian President Vladimir Putin to “cut it out.”
“No, they did not stop,” Ms. Brazile said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.” “They came after us absolutely every day until the end of the election. They tried to hack into our system repeatedly. We put up the very best cybersecurity — what I call infrastructure — to stop them, but they constantly, they came after us.”
Mr. Obama claimed in a press conference on Friday that the cyberattacks, allegedly carried out by Russia, ceased after he confronted Mr. Putin at a conference.
“In early September, when I saw President Putin in China, I felt that the most effective way to ensure that that didn’t happen was to talk to him directly and tell him to cut it out and there are going to be some serious consequences if he didn’t,” Mr. Obama said Friday. “And, in fact, we did not see further tampering of the election process, but the leaks through WikiLeaks had already occurred.”
Ms. Brazile did not directly answer questions about whether she was “disappointed” in the president’s response to the cyberattacks.
“I am disappointed that we went through this process,” she said.
She said the DNC was “no match” for the cyberattacks, which exposed damaging emails between top party officials during the general election. One email showed Ms. Brazile, a former commentator for CNN, giving a CNN debate question to the Clinton campaign ahead of time.
“We were fighting foreign adversary in a cyber space,” Ms. Brazile said. “The Democratic National Committee, we were no match. And yet we fought constantly.”
The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that the Republican National Committee also was targeted by hackers believed to be working for Russia’s military and intelligence apparatus, but the intruders failed to bypass the security defenses on the RNC’s networks.
Ms. Brazile called for a congressional investigation into the hacks.
“I want to make sure that this never happens again, because this country deserves to have the kind of cybersecurity experts involved to make sure that our homeland is protected at every stage,” she said.