Russia to face 'consequences' if it meddles again says Tillerson
Raul ARBOLEDA (AFP)
Russia will face consequences if it meddles in the US legislative election this year, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Tuesday.
CIA Director Mike Pompeo warned last month that he does in fact expect Moscow to try to interfere, as US intelligence agencies insist it did in the 2016 presidential election to help Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton.
Tillerson, speaking to Fox News during a tour of Latin America, said "there's a lot of ways that the Russians can meddle in the elections, a lot of different tools they can use."
"And we are seeing certain behaviors. There are a number of important elections in this hemisphere this year, and leading up to the US in 2018," Tillerson said.
"I think it's important we just continue to say to Russia 'Look, if you think we don't see what you're doing, we do see it and you need to stop. If you don't, you are going to just continue to invite consequences for yourself.'"
He added, though, that if Moscow decides to meddle in an election, "it's very difficult to preempt it."
Special prosecutor Robert Mueller and US lawmakers are probing the Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, specifically whether the Trump campaign colluded in that effort and whether Trump has tried to obstruct justice by hindering the investigations.
Last week, the Republican-led House intelligence committee released a declassified memo that claimed that Democrat-funded research prompted the FBI to spy on a former Trump campaign aide, Carter Page.
The Democrats have stoutly resisted the document's release as misleading, asserting that it intended to lay the groundwork for Trump to fire senior officials and subvert the Russia meddling investigation led by Mueller.
On Monday, a US House panel voted unanimously in favor of publicly releasing the Democratic rebuttal to the memo, which has been described by House Democrat Eric Swalwell in an interview with CNN as, "poisonous."
On Tuesday, Sarah Huckabee Sanders the White House press secretary said Trump met with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to discuss the differences between the two competing memo releases. She said that it "will go through a full and thorough legal and national security review," according to the Times of Israel.
Trump, meanwhile, has repeatedly stated that he would like to speak with Mueller about the ongoing investigation and has even gone so far as saying he is "looking forward to it, actually."
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The US crypto-socialists fighting to preserve their power & privileges.