Trump hack­ing re­port vow

Pres­i­dent-elect says his team will probe claims over ‘fake’ doc­u­ment

The Herald - - INTERNATIONAL - JAMES HAMIL­TON WASHINGTON DC

US PRES­I­DENT-ELECT Don­ald Trump has said his team will have a “full re­port on hack­ing within 90 days” as he again dis­missed as fake a doc­u­ment al­leg­ing Rus­sia has dam­ag­ing in­for­ma­tion about him.

Mr Trump tweeted the dossier in­cludes “to­tally made up facts by sleaze­bag po­lit­i­cal op­er­a­tives, both Democrats and Repub­li­cans – FAKE NEWS!”

He added “Rus­sia says noth­ing ex­ists” and that the al­le­ga­tions will never be proved.

US in­tel­li­gence of­fi­cials briefed Mr Trump and Pres­i­dent Barack Obama on a dossier that in­cludes un­proven in­for­ma­tion about close co-or­di­na­tion be­tween Mr Trump’s in­ner cir­cle and Rus­sians about hack­ing into Demo­cratic ac­counts.

It also con­tained un­proven claims about al­leged un­usual sex­ual ac­tiv­i­ties by Mr Trump at­trib­uted to anony­mous sources.

Mr Trump also said Democrats should not be “com­plain­ing” about the FBI’s han­dling of Hil­lary Clin­ton be­cause she is “guilty as hell” and should not have been al­lowed to run for pres­i­dent in the first place.

He ap­pears to have been re­spond­ing to a Jus­tice Depart­ment in­quiry into the FBI’s han­dling of its in­ves­ti­ga­tion into Mrs Clin­ton’s pri­vate email server, and the FBI’s de­ci­sion to re­lease in­for­ma­tion about the re­view days be­fore the elec­tion. Aides to Mrs Clin­ton have blamed the FBI for in­flu­enc­ing vot­ers.

Mr Trump tweeted: “Based on the in­for­ma­tion they had she should never have been al­lowed to run – guilty as hell. They were VERY nice to her.”

Mr Trump will be sworn in on Fri­day in a cer­e­mony Mrs Clin­ton plans to at­tend as a for­mer first lady.

Mean­while, a prom­i­nent New York fi­nancier is to be­come a top White House ad­viser to Mr Trump, co-or­di­nat­ing the ad­min­is­tra­tion’s out­reach to the na­tion’s fi­nan­cial world and key mem­bers of the po­lit­i­cal com­mu­nity.

An­thony Scara­mucci, a colour­ful sur­ro­gate for Mr Trump and a top fundraiser dur­ing his cam­paign, will be ap­pointed within the week, ac­cord­ing to two peo­ple with knowl­edge of the de­ci­sion.

His ex­act ti­tle has not been set­tled, the sources said, but he may move into the Of­fice of Pub­lic En­gage­ment and In­ter­gov­ern­men­tal Af­fairs, which is cur­rently run by Va­lerie Jar­rett, one of Barack Obama’s most pow­er­ful al­lies.

Mr Scara­mucci may turn the role into some­thing more akin to what it was un­der Ge­orge Bush, when it was known as the Of­fice of Pub­lic Li­ai­son and In­ter­gov­ern­men­tal Af­fairs.

Mr Scara­mucci has deep ties to Wall Street and will be one of the ad­min­is­tra­tion’s pub­lic faces to the bank­ing and busi­ness worlds, but the hedge fund banker and fre­quent ca­ble TV com­men­ta­tor will also con­duct out­reach to Sil­i­con Val­ley and in­flu­en­tial or­gan­i­sa­tions in the non-profit world and pol­i­tics.

He has deep ties with in­com­ing White House strate­gist Steve Ban­non and se­nior ad­viser Jared Kush­ner, Mr Trump’s in­flu­en­tial son-in-law. Mr Kush­ner and Mr Ban­non will prob­a­bly be two of the three ma­jor power cen­tres in the West Wing, along with chief of staff Reince Priebus.

Mr Scara­mucci joins a grow­ing con­tin­gent of for­mer fel­low Gold­man Sachs em­ploy­ees due to join the new ad­min­is­tra­tion. Oth­ers in­clude Mr Ban­non and US Trea­sury nom­i­nee Steven Mnuchin.

Mr Trump mem­o­rably dis­par­aged Gold­man Sachs dur­ing the cam­paign, say­ing it held great sway over for­mer ri­vals Ted Cruz and Hil­lary Clin­ton, and has said that hedge fund man­agers do not pay enough in taxes.

DON­ALD TRUMP: Was briefed by in­tel­li­gence on the dossier.

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