- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 27, 2017

The House Intelligence Committee interviewed Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign chairman John Podesta behind closed doors on Tuesday as part of lawmakers investigation into Russian meddling in the election.

Mr. Podesta, who was targeted by Russian operatives as part of the cyber campaign launched during the election season, spoke briefly with reporters afterward.

“The president and the entire administration were dealing with an unprecedented incidence of the weaponization of the fruits of Russian cyber activity, and I think they were trying to make the best judgments they could on behalf to the American people,” Mr. Podesta told reporters after he was asked about the Obama administration’s response to the Russian hacking.

The administration has been criticized for its slow response to Moscow’s meddling, which was first mentioned publicly in October.

Mr. Podesta’s personal email account and the Democratic National Committee servers were hacked in the final months of the 2016 campaign and messages subsequently published on WikiLeaks. The disclosures proved embarrassing for the Democratic party. U.S. intelligence later determined that Russian operatives orchestrated the attack.

Last week, former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson told Congress that the White House had feared that a public accusation of Russian interference could have been construed as an effort to influence the election.

“A statement might be seen as challenging the integrity of the process itself,” he said.

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