Earlier today the Senate held public hearings with the heads of a number of major U.S. intelligence agencies. These agency heads regularly testify before Congress about various matters as a matter of course, but in the Trump era, these kinds of hearings have taken on a new importance and focus. Most of these agency leaders sounded competent and believable today – with the predictable exception of Trump’s handpicked CIA Director Mike Pompeo.
Senators asked all of the agency leaders today if Donald Trump had shown any real interest in getting to the bottom of Russian election hacking. Everyone from the FBI Director on down acknowledged that Trump had never once even so much as asked them to look into it. This is damning, as it confirms that Trump doesn’t want the truth to come out about Russian election interference. It’s not difficult to figure out why: he knows the truth is that he’s only in office because of Russia’s meddling on his behalf.
The trouble here: there was one exception today. CIA Director Mike Pompeo was the only one to testify that Trump is fully on board with getting to the bottom of Russian election hacking. So we’re left with a choice of believing the heads of all the other agencies, or the one guy who always seems to be saying or doing something suspicious when it comes to Trump and Russia. Pompeo just keeps finding ways to make himself look even guiltier. To be clear, looking guilty is entirely different from being guilty. There is no known evidence that Pompeo was involved in the Trump-Russia election rigging conspiracy. But every time he opens his mouth, he all but yells “Look at me, I’m a suspect.”
As we’ve been documenting for the past several months, something is always off with Pompeo when it comes to the Trump-Russia scandal. Last summer we learned that, even after the U.S. intel community figured out that National Security Adviser Michael Flynn was on the payroll of foreign governments, Pompeo made a point of continuing to give classified intel briefings in Flynn’s presence (link). Last fall, Pompeo weirdly began insisting that Russian meddling didn’t impact the outcome of the election (link). Now Pompeo is at it again. This guy can’t be trusted.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report