Google Hor

advertisement

Political News

Jeh Johnson: DNC did not want DHS help following election hack

Jeh Johnson: DNC did not want DHS help following election hack

“The FBI and the DNC had been in contact with each other months before about the intrusion,” former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said, “and the DNC did not feel it needed DHS’s assistance at that time.” | AP Photo

By Austin Wright

06/21/2017 10:06 AM EDT

Updated 06/21/2017 10:53 AM EDT

2017-06-21T10:53-0400

Former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said Wednesday the Democratic National Committee “did not feel it needed” the assistance of the Department of Homeland Security following last year’s election hack, which U.S. officials have since attributed to Russia.

“Sometime in 2016 I became aware of a hack into systems of the Democratic National Committee,” Johnson said in prepared testimony to the House Intelligence Committee. “I pressed my staff to know whether DHS was sufficiently proactive, and on the scene helping the DNC identify the intruders and patch vulnerabilities. The answer, to the best of my recollection, was not reassuring.

Story Continued Below

“The FBI and the DNC had been in contact with each other months before about the intrusion,” he continued, “and the DNC did not feel it needed DHS’s assistance at that time.”

Johnson’s testimony is part of the House Intelligence panel’s investigation into Russian meddling in the presidential election, which is looking into possible collusion between Moscow and the Trump campaign.

U.S. officials believe Russia later provided the information stolen from the DNC, possibly using intermediaries, to WikiLeaks as part of the Kremlin’s larger effort to damage Hillary Clinton and help elect Trump.

Johnson faced questions from the intelligence panel’s ranking Democrat, Rep. Adam Schiff of California, over why the Obama administration waited until October to inform the public about Russia’s cyber campaign.

“This was a big decision, and there were a lot of considerations that went into it,” Johnson responded. “This was an unprecedented step.”

A daily play-by-play of congressional news in your inbox.

By signing up you agree to receive email newsletters or alerts from POLITICO. You can unsubscribe at any time.

He said the administration was concerned about being criticized for trying to influence the election, especially given that Trump was calling the election process “rigged.”

He also noted that when the administration finally did decide to issue its statement about the hacking — on Oct. 7 — that it got overshadowed because that was the same day the news broke of the “Access Hollywood” video from 11 years earlier in which Trump bragged about groping women.

Schiff then asked why President Barack Obama did not do more to draw attention to the issue of Russia’s cyber campaign.

“You shouldn't view the Oct. 7 statement in isolation,” Johnson responded. "This was an ongoing effort to inform the public."

In his prepared remarks, Johnson chronicles his attempt to sound the alarm about Russia’s cyber campaign — only to run into political obstacles. For instance, he said he wanted to declare the country's election infrastructure to be "critical infrastructure," which would have made it a top priority for receipt of DHS services and ensured

...

DCCC seeks to rally demoralized troops

DCCC seeks to rally demoralized troops

In this Nov. 2014 file photo, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman Ben Ray Luján is pictured at a news conference with Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). | Getty

ATLANTA — Facing fresh criticism from fellow Democrats after a disappointing loss in a Georgia special election, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman Ben Ray Luján on Wednesday sought to rally his party by declaring the House of Representatives in play and distributing internal data suggesting a number of incumbent Republicans are in more electoral trouble than widely thought.

In a nearly 1,600-word Wednesday morning memo to committee staff that was obtained by POLITICO, the New Mexico congressman shared polling conducted between late March and mid-June showing Democrats in position to make gains in a handful of competitive seats held by Republicans.

Story Continued Below

Explaining that in some cases the pollsters tested specific Democratic challengers against Republican incumbents, Lujan said “many incumbents — who won with double digits last cycle — would be in the race of their careers, including Reps. Martha McSally (D+5), Brian Mast (D+3), Kevin Yoder (D+2), and Rodney Frelinghuysen (D+3).”

“We have a unique opportunity to flip control of the House of Representatives in 2018. This is about much more than one race: the national environment, unprecedented grassroots energy and impressive Democratic candidates stepping up to run deep into the battlefield leave no doubt that Democrats can take back the House next fall,” he writes elsewhere in the memo. “I don’t make this statement lightly — I’ve never said it before. I know the road back to a Democratic House majority will be long and hard.”

The message lands at a difficult time for Democratic leaders, coming after they pumped millions of dollars into Georgia's 6th District to try and elect Jon Ossoff to replace now-HHS Secretary Tom Price, Tuesday's loss to Republican Karen Handel hit them hard.

A daily play-by-play of congressional news in your inbox.

By signing up you agree to receive email newsletters or alerts from POLITICO. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Activists, consultants, and lawmakers alike spent hours on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning questioning the DCCC’s leadership in Georgia and in a handful of other special elections where Democrats have come close but fallen short.

The party’s candidates have come far closer than previous Democrats in the heavily Republican districts, but the handful of high-profile losses — including in Kansas and Montana — still proved demoralizing to many party strategists.

Lujan’s message on Wednesday was that the Trump-driven swing that’s been seen in those races portends a broader shift ahead of 2018.

“As you know, we need 24 seats to retake the majority. Our DCCC polling team and outside pollsters went into dozens of districts in the last few months to learn: Is the momentum real? Is it building to the point that we can win 24 seats and take back the House? The answer is yes. In more than 24 districts and counting, generic Democrats are leading in the polls or

...

Alexandria shooter did not appear to have an organized hit list of lawmakers, FBI says

Alexandria shooter did not appear to have an organized hit list of lawmakers, FBI says

FBI Special Agent in Charge Tim Slater holds up a flyer looking for information about the deceased suspect James T. Hodgkinson on June 14. | AP Photo

...

DCCC seeks to rally demoralized troops

DCCC seeks to rally demoralized troops

In this Nov. 2014 file photo, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman Ben Ray Luján is pictured at a news conference with Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). | Getty

ATLANTA — Facing fresh criticism from fellow Democrats after a disappointing loss in a Georgia special election, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman Ben Ray Luján on Wednesday sought to rally his party by declaring the House of Representatives in play and distributing internal data suggesting a number of incumbent Republicans are in more electoral trouble than widely thought.

In a nearly 1,600-word Wednesday morning memo to committee staff that was obtained by POLITICO, the New Mexico congressman shared polling conducted between late March and mid-June showing Democrats in position to make gains in a handful of competitive seats held by Republicans.

Story Continued Below

Explaining that in some cases the pollsters tested specific Democratic challengers against Republican incumbents, Lujan said “many incumbents — who won with double digits last cycle — would be in the race of their careers, including Reps. Martha McSally (D+5), Brian Mast (D+3), Kevin Yoder (D+2), and Rodney Frelinghuysen (D+3).”

“We have a unique opportunity to flip control of the House of Representatives in 2018. This is about much more than one race: the national environment, unprecedented grassroots energy and impressive Democratic candidates stepping up to run deep into the battlefield leave no doubt that Democrats can take back the House next fall,” he writes elsewhere in the memo. “I don’t make this statement lightly — I’ve never said it before. I know the road back to a Democratic House majority will be long and hard.”

The message lands at a difficult time for Democratic leaders, coming after they pumped millions of dollars into Georgia's 6th District to try and elect Jon Ossoff to replace now-HHS Secretary Tom Price, Tuesday's loss to Republican Karen Handel hit them hard.

A daily play-by-play of congressional news in your inbox.

By signing up you agree to receive email newsletters or alerts from POLITICO. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Activists, consultants, and lawmakers alike spent hours on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning questioning the DCCC’s leadership in Georgia and in a handful of other special elections where Democrats have come close but fallen short.

The party’s candidates have come far closer than previous Democrats in the heavily Republican districts, but the handful of high-profile losses — including in Kansas and Montana — still proved demoralizing to many party strategists.

Lujan’s message on Wednesday was that the Trump-driven swing that’s been seen in those races portends a broader shift ahead of 2018.

“As you know, we need 24 seats to retake the majority. Our DCCC polling team and outside pollsters went into dozens of districts in the last few months to learn: Is the momentum real? Is it building to the point that we can win 24 seats and take back the House? The answer is yes. In more than 24 districts and counting, generic Democrats are leading in the polls or

...

ACLU sues D.C. police over alleged mistreatment during Trump inauguration protests

Protesters are pictured. | Getty

Protesters stand on overturned trash cans and newspaper stands during a protest reacting to the inauguration of President Donald Trump on January 20 in Washington, DC. | Getty

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit Wednesday against Washington’s Metropolitan Police Department on behalf of four individuals who claim they were mistreated by officers amid protests last January marking the inauguration of President Donald Trump.

The suit’s plaintiffs, two protesters, a photojournalist and a legal observer, allege that they were illegally detained, pepper sprayed and denied access to food, water, and bathroom facilities, among other offenses. The lawsuit names the District of Columbia, Metropolitan Police Chief Peter Newsham and 170 unnamed police officers and supervisors as defendants.

Story Continued Below

Trump’s inauguration last January drew massive crowds to Washington, both of the president’s supporters as well as those upset by his policy proposals and rhetoric. Demonstrations in downtown Washington quickly turned violent on inauguration day, with protesters lighting fires and engaging in conflict with police dressed in riot gear. All four of the defendants in the suit filed Wednesday claim they were not involved in any illegal activity on the day of the protests.

A copy of the filing document was posted online by The Washington Post .

Sign up for POLITICO Playbook and get the latest news, every morning — in your inbox.

By signing up you agree to receive email newsletters or alerts from POLITICO. You can unsubscribe at any time.

All four plaintiffs accused Metropolitan Police of using pepper spray or tear gas on them without justification, in one case allegedly simply because a plaintiff was standing near an area where protesters were being detained.

Shay Horse, the photojournalist plaintiff, and Elizabeth Lagesse, one of the protester plaintiffs, said they were handcuffed so tightly by police that the former lost feeling in some of his fingers that did not return for months and the latter bled from her wrists. Horse and Milo Gonzalez, the other protester named as a plaintiff, claim they were “subjected to intrusive, humiliating and unjustified manual rectal probing and grabbing of their testicles.”

Lagesse, Horse and Gonzalez also accused Metropolitan Police of “unreasonably” denying them access to food, water and bathroom facilities while they were detained on a street corner and of “unnecessarily prolonging the arrest process in order to keep detainees in a state of anxiety, hunger, thirst and other discomfort.

The lawsuit lists 16 different claims against Metropolitan Police, including intentional infliction of emotional distress, assault and battery, false arrest and excessive use of force.

In a statement, Metropolitan Police spokeswoman Karimah Bilal did not directly address the charges outlined in the ACLU suit but instead drew a disinfection between the "thousands of individuals" who protested peacefully on Inauguration Day and "another group of individuals who chose to engage in criminal acts." The second group left at least six officers injured, she said, and "the bulk of them" have been indicted by a grand jury and are facing prosecution.

"As

...
You are here: Asian-Americans Home Politics