The election and effective swearing in of President Donald Trump after the most recent election spurred rumors of Russia’s involvement in the victory. The President has since denied the allegations amid information from the United States Intelligence Community including the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), confirming the involvement, only admitting to involvement for the first time on Jan. 11, 2017 in a news conference in New York. The controversy since its eruption has caused media to closely follow Trump’s relationship with Russia and its president Vladimir Putin.
When asked who was responsible for the pubic leaks of Democratic Party emails during the campaign period, Trump replied, “I think it was Russia.” However, the President held his position that Moscow had a hand in his victory in the elections.
U.S. officials submitted a two-page summary of the report they received about Russia’s involvement in the U.S elections regarding Trump. However, the president, his aides, and his Vice President (VP) Mike Pence rebuffed the allegations, terming them as malicious and meant to destroy him politically.
According to a U.S. intelligence report, Putin directed a delicate influence including cyber-attacks that meant to degrade the Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Additionally, the report stated the attacks supported the president in his campaigns. Commissioned the former President Obama in December 2016, the report concluded Russian interference did not affect the vote tallies. The report, however, did not include information on whether the interference affected the vote in other ways.
According to a report from The New York Times, phone call records and intercepted calls showed communication on repeated occasions between Trump’s presidential campaign team members and senior Russian intelligence in the period leading to the elections. The President and his team had been under pressure from the members of the Republican Party to accept the allegations with a little window left before Trump’s swearing in. President Trump further denied allegations that he has personal business involvements in Russia, which increased his affiliation to Putin.