Findings by the intelligence community that Russia meddled in the 2016 presidential election to help Donald Trump win were “accurate and on point,” according to an unclassified report and accompanying statement by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence released Tuesday.
The committee’s findings came after a lengthy review of the “sources, tradecraft and analytic work underpinning” a January 2017 intelligence community assessment.
The FBI’s and CIA’s “analytical disagreement” with the NSA over whether Russia sought to bolster the Trump presidential campaign was “reasonable,” the report also said.
While the FBI and CIA had “high confidence” that Russian President Vladimir Putin aspired to help Trump’s election chances by denigrating opponent Hillary Clinton, the NSA had only “moderate confidence” in that assessment, according to the January 2017 analysis.
The disagreement among agencies “was reasonable, transparent, and openly debated among the agencies and analysts, with analysts, managers and agency heads on both sides of the confidence level articulately justifying their positions,” the Senate intelligence committee’s findings said.
In a statement, Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr, R-N.C, said the panel’s review was ongoing.
“The committee has spent the last 16 months reviewing the sources, tradecraft and analytic work underpinning the intelligence community assessment and sees no reason to dispute the conclusions,” Burr said.
“The committee continues its investigation, and I am hopeful that this installment of the committee’s work will soon be followed by additional summaries providing the American people with clarity around Russia’s activities regarding U.S. elections.”
Whether Russian authorities sought to meddle in the 2016 election to help Trump prevail has been a key point of contention between House and Senate intelligence committees.