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Pelosi pushes Ryan to rule out using hacked emails in campaign

Pelosi pushes Ryan to rule out using hacked emails in campaign
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House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is urging GOP leaders to renounce using hacked Democratic emails as campaign weapons ahead of November's elections.

In a letter sent Tuesday to Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanMcCarthy faces pushback from anxious Republicans over interview comments Pelosi and Trump go a full year without speaking Jordan vows to back McCarthy as leader even if House loses more GOP seats MORE (R-Wis.), Pelosi said the infiltration of computer systems within the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) — hacking linked to Russian intelligence — marks "an unprecedented assault on the sanctity of our democratic process."

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She called on Democrats and Republicans to join forces and "present a united front in the face of Russia’s attempts to tamper with the will of the American people." 

"We must come together to say that defending our democracy from Russia’s meddling is more important than any advantage or disadvantage in this election," Pelosi wrote.

"It is my hope that you will join me in opposing the [National Republican Congressional Committee] and the DCCC from using any documents from Russian criminal cyber-attacks in this campaign."

The letter arrives several days after Guccifer 2.0, a shadowy hacker persona with suspected Russian ties, leaked a series of DCCC memos on a range of topics. 

In a short introduction, Guccifer 2.0 claimed the documents came from "a folder from the Nancy Pelosi’s PC" — a claim Pelosi has denied, saying she doesn't have a personal computer at the DCCC.

Most of the items were mundane housekeeping documents, like campaign finance outlines and guidelines for campaign staff.

But one memo was designed to coach Democrat candidates in their approach to Black Lives Matter activists — a message quickly lambasted by leaders within the movement, who accused the DCCC of an attempt at "pacifying" the group instead of taking their message to heart.

Pelosi responded by siding with Black Lives Matter. But the embarrassing episode and the threat of more leaks — combined with the possibility that the hackers could fake documents to suggest criminal acts — is clearly weighing heavily on the Democrats' minds as the election season ticks down to November.

"Russia’s insidious efforts to tamper with democratic elections are already well-documented throughout Europe, in Ukraine, the Republic of Georgia, and even Germany. They have also been known to doctor the documents they release," Pelosi wrote to Ryan. 

"I hope that we can discuss this important matter as Congress returns."

The letter comes on the heels of a similar plea sent last week by DCCC Chairman Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.) to Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.), who heads the Republicans' campaign arm.