Natasha Bertrand, Kyle Cheney, and Andrew Desiderio report Dem leaders demand FBI briefing on ‘foreign interference campaign’ targeting lawmakers. There’s a possible Wisconsin connection:
Among the Democrats’ concerns is that a Senate investigation being led by Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) has become a vehicle for “laundering” a foreign influence campaign to damageDemocratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, according to two people familiar with the demand.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer demanded the all-Congress briefing Monday, citing “specific” intelligence that a foreign influence operation targeted lawmakers to “launder and amplify disinformation in order to influence congressional activity.”
Though the letter did not mention the Johnson investigation, it included a classified addendum that the two sources say identified the probe as one of the sources of their concern.
“We are gravely concerned, in particular, that Congress appears to be the target of a concerted foreign interference campaign, which seeks to launder and amplify disinformation in order to influence congressional activity, public debate, and the presidential election in November,” Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Schumer (D-N.Y.) wrote in their letter, which was also signed by the chair of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), and the vice chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.).
All four Democratic signatories are members of the Gang of Eight, a group of eight lawmakers who are briefed on classified intelligence by the executive branch.
There are two kinds of launderers in a matter like this: (1) those who know they are legitimatizing disinformation or (2) those who genuinely believe the disinformation they’re legitimizing is the truth. The shrewd course for a foreign power would be to find someone in the latter category of launderers, best described as weak-minded dupes. That type could help wash away the stain of lies without any intentional deception to which they might later confess.
As for someone in the United States Senate who’d fall into that category…