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Angus King: Ending election security briefings 'looks like a pre-cover-up'

Angus King: Ending election security briefings 'looks like a pre-cover-up'
© Greg Nash

Sen. Angus KingAngus KingProgressives' majority delusions politically costly Senate approves sweeping coronavirus measure in partisan vote The eight Democrats who voted 'no' on minimum wage MORE (I-Maine) on Monday blasted Director of National Intelligence John RatcliffeJohn Lee RatcliffeFormer Trump officials eye bids for political office Grenell congratulates Buttigieg on becoming second openly gay Cabinet member Senate confirms Biden's intel chief, giving him first Cabinet official MORE’s announcement that his office will no longer deliver in-person election security briefings to Congress, saying it “looks like a pre-cover-up.”

“I can’t get into the head of these people, but we have a president who never likes to hear the word ‘Russia,’ at least not in the context of the relationships or of Russia meddling in our elections,” King told CNN.

“I hate to say this but it looks like a pre-cover-up. It looks like they don’t want to share the information, they’re covering up information,” he added. “I don’t know what they have or don’t have, but it looks like they’re trying to keep this information from the public so when everybody goes to vote on Nov. 3, they won’t know the extent to which they’ve been attempted to be influenced by the Russians or some other country.”

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Ratcliffe, who made the announcement Saturday, has defended the decision, telling Fox News’s Maria BartiromoMaria Sara BartiromoBBC apologizes for interview with fake Cory Booker Gaetz suggests DeSantis could run for president in 2024 if Trump is out of the picture Bartiromo, Pirro, Dobbs file to dismiss Smartmatic lawsuits MORE it was necessary to prevent the leak of classified information.

“I reiterated to Congress, look, I'm going to keep you fully and currently informed, as required by the law,” Ratcliffe said Sunday. “But I also said, we're not going to do a repeat of what happened a month ago, when I did more than what was required, at the request of Congress, to brief not just the Oversight Committees, but every member of Congress.”

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiTrump White House associate tied to Proud Boys before riot via cell phone data Greene sounds off on GOP after Hill story 'Bloody Sunday' to be commemorated for first time without John Lewis MORE (D-Calif.) and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffHouse Democrats want to silence opposing views, not 'fake news' White House defends not sanctioning Saudi crown prince over Khashoggi What good are the intelligence committees? MORE (D-Calif.) slammed the announcement in a joint statement Saturday.

“This intelligence belongs to the American people, not the agencies which are its custodian. And the American people have both the right and the need to know that another nation, Russia, is trying to help decide who their president should be,” they said.