Fox News’ Ainsley Earhardt justified on Tuesday President Trump’s inaction on reports that he had been provided a written assessment on a Russian bribery scheme to pay militants to target and kill American and coalition troops in Afghanistan because not all presidents “read all of their briefings.”
"Fox & Friends" host Ainsley Earhardt on Tuesday justified President Trump's inaction on Russian bounty intelligence in spite of reports that he received written assessment on the issue saying, "All presidents don't read all of their briefings." pic.twitter.com/I2I95qANZ3
— TPM Livewire (@TPMLiveWire) June 30, 2020
The comment came as “Fox & Friends” hosts discussed a deepening plot surrounding a New York Times finding that Russian operatives offered rewards to Taliban-linked militias for killing U.S. and coalition forces in Afghanistan. While the White House has maintained that the president was “not personally briefed,” the revelation raises questions about when and how the president is made aware of foreign intelligence concerns.
Trump over the weekend tweeted claims that he had not been briefed on the Russian bounty intelligence until Sunday when officials said after deeming the information was not “credible” they decided not to alert Trump to the matter.
“The president has to make decisions based on intel that’s in front of him, and if he is not briefed on it then he doesn’t know about it,” Earhardt said echoing Trump’s swearing of ignorance on the issue. “If he is briefed on it, then he can act on it.”
But Trump’s assertion that he didn’t know about the Russian bribery scheme bristles against reports that officials familiar with the matter confirmed that Trump received a written briefing on the issue in late February – a point raised by co-host Steve Doocey.
“All presidents don’t read all of their briefings,” Earhardt responded.