DNI Ratcliffe says Hunter Biden laptop is not 'some Russian disinformation campaign'

The Director of National Intelligence clarified that the intelligence community is not viewing Hunter Biden's laptop as part of a Kremlin plot.

Published: October 19, 2020 8:40am

Updated: October 19, 2020 2:25pm

Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe said Monday that Hunter Biden's laptop "is not part of some Russian disinformation campaign," despite claims from House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff to the contrary.

Last week, the New York Post published emails that appear to show that Biden in 2015 set up a meeting between an official with the Ukraine energy company Burisma Holdings and his father Joe Biden, who was vice president at the time. 

The Biden presidential campaign has said the candidate never took the meeting.

The authenticity of the emails remains in question, with the GOP-led Senate Intelligence Committee this past weekend asking the FBI whether it has possession of the laptop and hard drive from which the email purportedly came and whether the emails are legitimate.

"It's funny that some of the people who complain the most about intelligence being politicized are the ones politicizing the intelligence," Ratcliffe told FOX Business' Maria Bartiromo on Monday morning. "Unfortunately, it is Adam Schiff who said the intelligence community believes the Hunter Biden laptop and emails on it are part of a Russian disinformation campaign." 

"Let me be clear: The intelligence community doesn't believe that because there is no intelligence that supports that," Ratcliffe continued. "And we have shared no intelligence with Adam Schiff, or any member of Congress ... Hunter Biden's laptop is not part of some Russian disinformation campaign." 

Ratcliffe spoke with about two week remaining in the presidential campaign between President Trump and Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential nominee.

Ratcliffe's comments come following an interview over the weekend, during which Schiff, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee told CNN: "We know that this whole smear on Joe Biden comes from the Kremlin. That's been clear for well over a year now that they've been pushing this false narrative about the vice president and his son." 

In response, Ratcliffe told Bartiromo: "In this case, Adam Schiff saying this is part of a disinformation campaign and that the intelligence community has assessed and believes that —that is simply not true. Whether it's Republicans or Democrats, if they try to leverage the intelligence community for political gain, I won't allow it."

"Without commenting on any investigation that they may or may not have, their investigation is not centered around Russian disinformation, and the intelligence community is not playing any role with respect to that," continued Ratcliffe. "The FBI has had possession of this." 

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