President Donald Trump and his closest allies are still failing to admit to the basic reality of Russian interference in U.S. elections and their own cooperation with it. For all their melodramatic talk about supposedly hoping to protect U.S. elections from baselessly supposed election interference by Ukraine, they’re proving with their ever so convenient willful ignorance of Russian efforts that they’re just doing what’s politically convenient. Now, a top official at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence could even get pressured out of the White House in political retaliation for a briefing she recently delivered to Congress on the reality of Russian interference efforts.
That official is Shelby Pierson, whose express job has been to handle these election security issues. Following a recent briefing that she gave House Intelligence Committee members — including, of course, Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), who Trump often freaks out over — acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire himself got pressured out of the job.
Now, CNN host Victor Blackwell explains, discussing Pierson:
‘This position was just created, and she’s the person to oversee election security, going to brief members on the House Intelligence Committee about their assessment that Russia is interfering in the 2020 election. That they have a preference for President Trump. What we’ve learned from sources is that inside the office of the Director of National Intelligence is she could be next to be pushed out of the office.’
What would happen if she does get pushed out? And concurrently, how grave would the threat to U.S. national security have to be for any Republicans in Congress to act against Trump’s abuses of power? Russia is continuing to meddle in U.S. elections, and Trump — as president of the United States — refuses to do anything but stick his head in the sand and fire just about anyone who stands in his way. Reportedly, the head of White House personnel is explicitly looking for anyone on staff across the administration who might be politically opposed to Trump with the aim to pressure them out.
He hasn’t even had a permanent Director of National Intelligence in place for months. After Maguire abruptly left, Trump named the loyal but completely inexperienced Richard Grenell to the position in an acting capacity, but he says that a nominee to serve in a more permanent capacity will apparently come within weeks.
CNN guest Lynn Sweet noted:
‘It sends the signal once again that President Trump is not a respecter of the United States intelligence services with the bigger issue that a permanent director has not been in that office since last summer when Dan Coats was forced out. This is a key position, subject to Senate confirmation and Trump hasn’t seen fit to have a permanent director for months now.’
It’s not alone — across the administration, Trump has gotten around even the lax vetting that might take place in the Republican-controlled Senate via appointing figures as “acting” occupants of their positions, which is supposed to mean temporary. Currently, even the head of the Department of Homeland Security is “acting.”