Richard Clarke: Trump ‘Believes the Russian Activity Benefits Him Politically’

On Monday’s broadcast of CNN’s “New Day,” Richard Clarke, who served in the administrations of former Presidents Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Clinton, and George W. Bush, argued that President Trump hasn’t ordered the US to counter Russian bots and trolls or implemented Congressional sanctions because “he believes the Russian activity benefits him politically.”

Clarke said, “Well Chris, for any of the presidents I worked for, if there were a major threat to the United States, to our democracy, the president would have asked for, and personally gotten involved in crafting a comprehensive program. This president hasn’t done that. And yeah, the government does sort of work on automatic pilot on some issues, but for some things, the president has to give an order. And for NSA and Cyber Command and CIA to do some things covertly in cyberspace to stop the kind of attacks that are still ongoing with the Russian bots and Russian trolls trying to make America argue against itself, trying to create discord in the United States, for that kind of counterprogram to happen, the president has to give an order. He hasn’t done it. And I think there’s a very clear reason why he hasn’t done it and why, after Congress overwhelmingly approved new sanctions on Russia, he refuses to implement them. And the reason, I think, is inescapable. It is that he believes the Russian activity benefits him politically.”

He explained, “Well, the very same bots that helped get him elected are still out there. The organization that did it is still out there. And they are still supporting his causes. They are still making dissent, likely in the United States, pretending to be Black Lives Matter groups, pretending to be pro-gun groups. They’re whipping up dissent. They’re whipping up discord. And on every issue in cyberspace and the social media forums, these Russian bots are still backing him.”

(h/t NewsBusters)

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