Romney breaks with Trump claim that Ukraine meddled in the 2016 election

President Trump Chuck Todd interviews Sen. John Kennedy right on “Meet the Press” on Sunday

According to U.S. Intelligence agencies and witnesses like Dr. Fiona Hill, the "fictional narrative" was part of Russian President Vladimir Putin's plan to sow chaos among the U.S. and its allies.

"Some of you on this committee appear to believe that Russian Federation and its security services did not conduct a campaign against our country - and that perhaps, somehow, for some reason, Ukraine did", Hill told the Republican members of the House Intelligence Committee, adding that she refused to aid their efforts "to legitimize an alternate narrative that the Ukrainian government is a USA adversary, and that Ukraine - not Russian Federation - attacked us in 2016".

Ukraine, which depends on U.S. army help to battle Russian-backed separatists, has dismissed any suggestion of United States election interference.

"It does not serve our interests", Hale said.

Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming, the chairman of the Republican Policy Committee, said a "lot of people" meddled in the election. Menendez continued, to which Hale responded: "I am not". "I think Iran did". To Graham's dismay, this false narrative is now being championed by his Republican colleagues in the House and Senate as they strive to defend Trump against impeachment.

"No", he replied when Menendez asked him if Russian meddling in the election was a "hoax", a word often used by Trump.


Graham has a record of disagreeing with Trump on military and intelligence issues, and usually sides with the military and the United States Intelligence Community (USIC) on national security concerns.

A low-level DNC official did make contacts in 2016 to research Paul Manafort's ties in Ukraine - Manafort was then Trump's campaign manager - but the effort appears to have been brief.

Speaking alongside the visiting prime minister of Sweden, Zelenskiy also said he would discuss holding local elections in the eastern Donbass region at the summit, insisting these be held under Ukrainian law and with Ukrainian candidates.

US intelligence officials have said that the conspiracy theory that Ukraine, not Russian Federation, tried to interfere in the election was part of Russia's "yearslong campaign to essentially frame Ukraine as responsible for Moscow's own hacking of the 2016 election".

The House Intelligence Committee was expected to vote Tuesday on a report to send to the House Judiciary Committee, which will consider whether to advance articles of impeachment.

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