House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) says she is skeptical about statements related to the election coming out of the intelligence community.
In a hastily called press conference on Wednesday, Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe and FBI Director Christopher Wray announced that Russia and Iran are trying to interfere in the 2020 election.
Pelosi was asked if she felt reassured after speaking to Ratcliffe on Thursday. She responded, “I think we have to be very careful about any statements coming out about the election from the intelligence community at this time.”
Watch the video below:
I asked Speaker Pelosi about her conversation today with DNI Ratcliffe and if it reassured her about the security of our elections.— Caroline McKee (@CarolineMcKee12) October 22, 2020
She said, “I think we have to be very careful about any statements coming out about the election from the intelligence community at this time.” pic.twitter.com/0VPQQr2Y7I
During his press conference, Ratcliffe said, “We have identified that two foreign actors, Iran and Russia, have taken specific actions to influence public opinion relating to our elections.”
“This data can be used by foreign actors to attempt to communicate false information to registered voters that they hope will cause confusion, sow chaos, and undermine your confidence in American democracy,” he added.
He also claimed the Iranian efforts were aimed at harming President Donald Trump.
Ratcliffe said Iranian operatives have shared videos that claimed people could cast fraudulent ballots “even from overseas.”
Additionally, they have sent emails to Democratic voters that claimed to be from the far-right Proud Boys group that read, “You will vote for Trump on Election Day, or we will come after you.”
In a statement, Pelosi and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) said, “We learned about disturbing threats from foreign adversaries aiming to influence the upcoming elections using voter registration data, in an effort to sow chaos and undermine voters’ trust in our elections and democratic institutions.”
“We cannot allow voter intimidation or interference efforts, either foreign or domestic, to silence voters’ voices and take away that right,” the lawmakers added.
While they accepted the premise that foreign actors are working to influence the election, Congressional Democrats have balked at Ratcliffe’s claim that the foreign meddling was aimed at harming Trump.
The House Homeland Security Committee tweeted out, “These election interference operations are clearly not meant to harm President Trump. Americans should listen to FBI Director Wray and CISA Director Krebs. Ratcliffe has TOO OFTEN politicized the Intelligence Community to carry water for the President.”
TO CLARIFY: These election interference operations are clearly not meant to harm President Trump. Americans should listen to FBI Director Wray and CISA Director Krebs. Ratcliffe has TOO OFTEN politicized the Intelligence Community to carry water for the President. https://t.co/vZHI6Z35HU— House Homeland Security Committee (@HomelandDems) October 22, 2020
And in an interview on MSNBC, Schiff said the influence operation was designed to “suppress the Democratic vote, or an effort to inflame the Democratic vote, or simply to sow chaos.”