Russia did not impact US presidential election: McCain
Story Code : 585378
Speaking at the Halifax International Security Forum in Washington on Sunday, the head of the Senate Armed Services Committee said the American people did not need Russian hackers to tell them who to vote for.
“I do not think that the outcome of the election was impacted by Russian hacking. I think the American people have the good sense to vote for people without the help of Russian hackers,” McCain said.
He made the remarks in response to a question regarding claims by the National Security Agency (NSA) chief that Russia had definitely hacked the Democratic Party's various organizations prior to the November 8 election.
After their candidate Hillary Clinton’s defeat against the Republican nominee Donald Trump, Democrats rushed to point their fingers at Russia, claiming that Moscow helped Trump win by exposing damaging secrets about Clinton.
Thousands of hacked emails from Clinton's aides revealed shocking facts about the mechanics of her campaign and further marred the former secretary of state’s image.
The release of the emails on anti-secrecy outlets like WikiLeaks website prompted warnings from Democrats as well as the administration of President Barack Obama about Russia’s intention to intervene in the crucial vote.
Some Republicans also repeated the claims after the election, with Senator Lindsay Graham of South Carolina calling on Congress to investigate the matter.
McCain, however, did not specify whether he would join Graham or not. Instead, he decided to joke about his own presidential run in 2012.
“The Chinese hacked my campaign,” he said. “That’s why I lost. Now I know.”
He also suggested that the issue of cyber security was so important that it needed its own committee in the Senate.
“I do believe it’s important for us to have — and I will be recommending — a select committee on the whole issue of cyber security,” the Arizona senator said.