U.S. officials retrace Russian Federation threat to 2016 elections

At a forum hosted by the House Homeland Security Committee on Thursday, Johnson responded to Trump's tweets but did not say whether he felt the president had twisted his words, adding that he would "leave that to the journalists".

Johnson announced the shift on the same day as the release of a declassified USA intelligence report that said Putin "ordered" an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the us presidential election.

Officials with the Department of Homeland Security and Federal Bureau of Investigation told the Senate Intelligence Committee on Wednesday that Russian Federation targeted the election systems of 21 states previous year.

Russian hackers targeted 21 U.S. states' election systems in the 2016 presidential race, a USA official told Congress on Wednesday, but a former official testified that a video of Donald Trump bragging of sexual conquests distracted attention from Washington's warnings. But Trump has long vented at the FBI and about congressional investigations into Russian efforts to influence the election and whether anyone affiliated with his campaign colluded with the Kremlin.

President Donald Trump questions why the Obama administration didn't try to stop Russian interference in the 2016 election. "Why didn't they stop them?" the president tweeted, shortly following with "... "It's all a big Dem HOAX", he tweeted.

"As of right now, we have evidence that election-related systems in 21 states were targeted", Manfra told the Senate Intelligence Committee in a separate hearing on Wednesday. "Most of the intelligence products that are relied upon to form certain assessments, that underlying data was available in 2016, some of it before the election".

Johnson explained that the Homeland Security Department had actually helped other departments with suspected hacks, and had been able to stem the damage - but the DNC just wasn't interested.

Last September, the DHS told The Associated Press that hackers believed to be Russian agents had targeted voter registration systems in more than 20 states. "So anything I'd have on that is derivative of what the intelligence community has - and the law enforcement community".

"The big issue, and let's not lose sight of it, the big issue is the cyber intrusions on our democracy a year ago and how to prevent that from happening in the future for the sake of our democracy", Johnson added.

In his testimony, Johnson said the DNC shrugged off the help.

During the presidential campaign, Trump said he hoped Russian Federation would be able to uncover missing emails from Hillary Clinton.

Dean confirmed Oklahoma election officials met a year ago with Homeland Security, which offered an array of cybersecurity options.

Congressman Trey Gowdy, who sits on the Committee, is baffled as to why DNC officials wouldn't take Johnson up on the offer and wonders what they may have been hiding.

Johnson said Russian hacking didn't change election totals, but he can't be sure other meddling didn't influence public opinion.

Bill Priestap, assistant director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation counterintelligence division, said the FBI is investigating the hackers' targeting efforts.

  • Carolyn Briggs