Russia, China out to prove democracy will fail, Rep. Chris Stewart says

Donald Trump and Jeff Sessions

But Coats, Bolton, FBI Director Christopher Wray, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and the director of the National Security Agency, Paul Nakasone, said Russian Federation was to blame, along with other foreign actors. "This includes measures to heighten the security and resilience of election systems and processes, to confront Russian and other foreign malign influence in the United States, to confront such aggression through worldwide action, and to reinforce a strong sanctions regime".

The top aides, including intelligence director Dan Coats and national security adviser John Bolton, appeared in the White House briefing room to stress that a major effort was under way to protect the integrity of congressional elections in November and the 2020 presidential election.

The officials outlined ways their agencies are sharing more information among each other and with state and local governments, working together on everything from sharing intelligence to promoting best practices in securing online voter databases to giving classified briefings to social media companies to help them secure their own platforms.

Dan Coats, director of national intelligence - America's most senior intelligence official - said that Mr Trump had "specifically" tasked agencies to make stopping election meddling a "top priority".

"Free and fair elections are the cornerstone of our democracy, and it has become clear that they are the target of our adversaries who seek, as the DNI just said, to sow discord and undermine our way of life", Nielsen said.

Mr Coats said: "Our focus here today is simply to tell the American people we acknowledge the threat".

"Our democracy is in the crosshairs", said Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen. Why didn't the government tell me he was under investigation.

Dead As Carr Fire In Northern California Continues To Burn
More than 3,000 fire personnel are battling the flames with more than 300 engines and 17 helicopters, Cal Fire reported . The Ranch and River fires in Mendocino County have collectively scorched more than 30,000 acres, Cal Fire said .

After the news conference with Trump and Putin, Coats issued a statement saying that Russian Federation meddled in the 2016 election.

President Trump called on his attorney general to end the Russian Federation probe being conducted by special counsel Robert Mueller immediately.

Gingrich, a Fox News contributor, added that he believes Manafort has a "good chance" to prevail at trial and Mueller will "look like a fool" if that happens.

Of course, Russian Federation did interfere, but "we don't have any evidence at all that they were able to penetrate any voting machines".

The tweet and a half-dozen others, they said, were prompted by Trump's rage after learning that Mueller wanted to question him about potential obstruction of justice. During an interview Monday July 23, 2018, Palazchenko declined to call the latest Helsinki meeting between US President Trump and Russian President Putin an outright failure, but said there seems a lack of clarity on exactly what the two agreed on.

Stewart, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, said he's often asked what he sees as the biggest threats to the U.S. Quoting a now retired military commander, he said Russian Federation is the only existential threat, North Korea is the most risky and China is the most complicated.

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