US election officials say the hacking of the Democratic National Committee and John Podesta’s email account by Russian operatives appears to have been designed to help Donald Trump win the White House.
“We know that Russia did not violate our election process.
We know that we had no involvement in the DNC/Podesta hack,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters.
“There was no effort to help Trump win.”
Mr Earnest said the US intelligence community “does not believe” the Russian government hacked into the DNC, the emails that were released by Wikileaks in July.
The president’s personal lawyer, Jay Sekulow, said Mr Trump was not a target of Russian hacking and that “the Russians did nothing to harm the US election process”.
He said that the “totally false” accusation that Mr Trump colluded with Russia to influence the election had become “part of the mainstream media playbook” and would have a damaging effect on the incoming administration.
“I can assure you that the president will continue to stand up to this kind of nonsense,” Mr Sekulaw said.
The White House on Tuesday released the intelligence briefing that Mr Earned referred to, which said the Russian “intrusions” were aimed at helping Mr Trump win.
The officials also said the intelligence community believes the hacking was carried out by a foreign government and not the Trump campaign.
The intelligence community is now conducting a full assessment of the DNC hack, but it is still assessing the possibility that the Russian intelligence services were behind it, a senior US official said.
“As this process is ongoing, it is important to stress that the United States remains firmly committed to the principles of free and fair elections and vigorously prosecuting Russia for any and all acts of interference,” Mr Earny said.
Mr Earner was asked about the president’s relationship with his top advisers and whether Mr Trump would continue to have a top adviser in the White Houses national security team.
“The president has a very good relationship with the chief of staff,” Mr Trump said.
He added: “We’ll see what happens with that guy.”
The White Senate confirmed Mr Sekolow as national security adviser, saying he is a former prosecutor and a former director of national intelligence.
The administration said it had been in talks with Congress about whether Mr Sekoltow should be considered for the post.
It is unclear whether Mr Earns comments were directly connected to Mr Sekoulow.