Administration

Meadows trying to root out suspected White House leakers by feeding them info: Axios

White House chief of staff Mark Meadows is reportedly engaged in an effort to track down the sources behind recent leaks to the media, putting many staff members on edge.

Axios reported Sunday that Meadows has been feeding information to various White House staffers in an effort to determine which staffers acted as sources for reporters. His efforts come after multiple leaks to the media have resulted in stories that have angered President Trump, including the revelation that intelligence officials reported that Russians were paying bounties to Taliban fighters to kill U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan. 

Another story that has reportedly consumed Trump was reporting earlier this summer that he had been rushed to a bunker in the White House after the protests first began over the police killing of George Floyd.

In recent days, Meadows has grown more vocal about his efforts to find the sources of leaks among White House staff, telling multiple staffers of his plan, according to Axios.

"Meadows told me he was doing that," one former White House official told the news outlet. "I don't know if it ever worked."

White House officials did not immediately return a request for comment from The Hill. Politico previously reported that top White House officials had narrowed down a list of suspects behind the leak about the Russian bounties to the single digits.

The Trump administration has faced heavy criticism from Capitol Hill over the issue of its response to the reported bounties on U.S. troops, with some Democrats accusing the president of ignoring his daily intelligence briefings.

"I'm interested in hearing the administration speak clearly about their plans that aren't just hypothetical sanctions sometime out in the future, but what should we be doing now to make [Russian intelligence] have more doubts about their behavior not just in Afghanistan but more broadly," Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) told The Hill this week.

Numerous hunts for leaks have been launched throughout the course of Trump's first term in office, though with few notable firings coming as a result.

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