Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said early Wednesday that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is a “sycophant for Russia.”
“He leaks, he steals data and compromises national security,” Ryan told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt.
Ryan declined to comment on President-elect Donald Trump’s tweets quoting Assange early Wednesday.
“The last thing I’m going to do is start commenting on every little tweet or Facebook post. That is just not what I do with the president-elect or when he’s president,” he said.
“I think he has not received his Russia briefing yet. I believe that is scheduled for Friday, so hopefully he’ll get to up to speed on what has been happening and what Russia has or has not done. And he’ll be better informed on that.”
“Julian Assange said ‘a 14 year old could have hacked Podesta’ – why was DNC so careless? Also said Russians did not give him the info!” Trump wrote on Twitter, referencing the emails purportedly from the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and Hillary Clinton‘s campaign chairman, John Podesta.
The tweet came one day after Fox News aired an interview with Assange conducted by Sean Hannity.
Assange maintained during the interview that the documents WikiLeaks published did not come from Russia.
The Obama administration in October formally accused Russia of trying to interfere in the United States election.
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