President-elect Donald Trump moved to bury once and for all the suspect dossier that surfaced earlier this week claiming the Russian government had compromising information on him, declaring Friday the details were concocted by “sleazebag political operatives” – while still not letting the intelligence community off the hook over claims they leaked it.
Trump started his Friday with a characteristic blizzard of tweets, largely focusing on the dossier controversy.
“It now turns out that the phony allegations against me were put together by my political opponents and a failed spy afraid of being sued,” he tweeted.
His “failed spy” slam refers to former British spy Christopher David Steele, who reportedly helped compile the dossier. Trump turned fire on the original sources of the material after slamming the media – namely CNN and BuzzFeed, the latter of which published the dossier itself – for reporting on the claims earlier this week.
But he also has continued to question the intelligence community’s role in the sordid allegations going public, reviving his charge Friday that they “probably” released it.
This, despite Director of National Intelligence James Clapper speaking with Trump on Wednesday about the matter, to express “profound dismay at the leaks” and claim that he does not believe they came from within the intelligence community.
In a statement, Clapper had said: “I emphasized that this document is not a U.S. Intelligence Community product and that I do not believe the leaks came from within the IC. The IC has not made any judgment that the information in this document is reliable, and we did not rely upon it in any way for our conclusions.”