A group of House Democrats left a classified briefing at the White House Tuesday morning, on reports that Russia paid Taliban fighters bounties on U.S. soldiers, with complaints that Trump administration officials were not more forthcoming about the intelligence. And they also left with lots of questions about why the president—who has dismissed the story as another “Russia hoax”—is not being more forthcoming with criticism for Russian president Vladimir Putin.
“The president called this a hoax, publicly,” said Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD), the number two House Democrat, at a Capitol Hill press conference after returning from the White House. “Nothing in the briefing we just received led me to believe it’s a hoax. There may be different judgements as to the level of credibility… there was no assertion that the information we had was a hoax.”
“We did not,” said Hoyer, “receive any new, substantive information.”