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GOP-led Senate Intelligence Committee agrees Russia tried to interfere in 2016 election on Trump's behalf

The Senate Intelligence Committee has finally concluded what the rest of the intelligence community did years ago.

On Tuesday, the GOP-led committee released its report on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. It confirms Kremlin-led interference in the election was aimed at helping President Trump, in contrast with what Trump has repeatedly brushed off as a "hoax."

The report released Tuesday is heavily redacted, but it's clear that it confirms the U.S. intelligence community's assessment made back in January 2017. It echoes conclusions made in the 2017 report, noting there was "specific intelligence reporting to support the assessment that [Russian President Vladimir] Putin and the Russian government demonstrated a preference for candidate Trump." The committee also concluded there was evidence showing Putin had "approved and directed aspects" of that interference.

"The committee found no reason to dispute the intelligence community's conclusions," Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Richard Burr (R-N.C.) confirmed in a statement. Vice Chair Mark Warner (D-Va.) added that there was "no reason to doubt that the Russians' success in 2016 is leading them to try again in 2020" — something former Special Counsel Robert Mueller and many other intelligence professionals have warned of for years.