CIA chief: ‘I have every expectation’ that Russia will try to influence midterms

CIA chief: ‘I have every expectation’ that Russia will try to influence midterms
© Victoria Sarno Jordan

CIA Director Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoOvernight Defense: Latest on Korea talks | Trump says summit results 'very exciting!' | Congress to get Space Force plan in February | Trump asked CIA about silent bombs Pompeo: US ready to 'immediately' resume talks with North Korea READ: President Trump’s exclusive interview with Hill.TV MORE said in a new interview that he has “every expectation” that Russia will attempt to influence this year’s midterm elections in the United States.

“I have every expectation that they will continue to try and do that, but I’m confident that America will be able to have a free and fair election [and] that we will push back in a way that is sufficiently robust that the impact they have on our election won’t be great,” Pompeo told the BBC.

The intelligence community concluded in a report released last year that Russia conducted a campaign aimed at helping President TrumpDonald John TrumpLondon terror suspect’s children told authorities he complained about Trump: inquiry The Memo: Tide turns on Kavanaugh Trump to nominate retiring lawmaker as head of trade agency MORE win the 2016 presidential election. 

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Pompeo stood by the report, even as Trump has said he believed Russian President Vladimir Putin's denials of such an effort.

Congressional committees are conducting investigations to determine the scope and methods of Russian meddling, and special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE is conducting a criminal investigation into Russian interference and possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Moscow.

Pompeo said Monday he hasn’t seen a decrease in Russian activity, and he still sees the Kremlin as the primary U.S. adversary. 

He added that China also poses a threat and has the ability to gain access to American information.

“We see it in our schools, in our hospitals and medical systems, we see it throughout corporate America. These [are] efforts we have to all be more focused on. We have to do better at pushing back against Chinese efforts to covertly influence the world,” Pompeo said.