White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah on Tuesday morning defended President Donald Trump’s tweets attacking the Obama administration regarding Russia, and charged that there has been a “revision of history” when it comes to comparing Trump’s attitude toward Russia to that of former President Obama.
Trump attacked Obama on Twitter Tuesday morning, accusing Obama of responding to Russian election meddling too late and claiming that he has been “much tougher on Russia than Obama.”
Asked on Fox News how the Trump administration plans to deter Russia from meddling in U.S. elections again, Shah offered few details and instead defended Trump’s response to Russia so far. He noted that the Trump administration is working with states to protect elections infrastructure from interference before diving into his defense of Trump.
“To the President’s tweet, this is something that we think there is a bit of a revision of history going on about how this President has confronted Russia and dealt with Russia and how the last administration dealt and confronted Russia,” Shah said on Fox News. “We have been tough, we have been measured, we have been smart and appropriate in dealing with Russia. What you had under the Obama administration was a lot of hot rhetoric and little results.”
Trump has repeatedly tried to undermine the intelligence community’s assessment that Russia meddled in the 2016 election by calling the investigations into the matter a “hoax.” The President still claims that Russian interference had no impact on the outcome of the election, even though U.S. officials have said there’s no way to tell.
The President has also dragged his feet on implementing new sanctions against Russia. Despite reluctantly signing into law new sanctions against Russia as punishment for election meddling, the Trump administration has blown past deadlines for actually imposing the sanctions.