Iran and Russia trying to meddle in US presidential election

Director of National Intelligence warns Iran and Russia have taken specific actions to influence public opinion ahead of November 3 vote.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

John Ratcliffe
John Ratcliffe

Iran is taking steps to interfere in the US presidential election, and Russia has obtained American voter information, national security officials warned on Wednesday night, according to NBC News.

“Iran and Russia have taken specific actions to influence public opinion related to our elections,” said Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe at a press conference.

“First we have confirmed that some voter registration information has been obtained by Iran and separately by Russia,” added Ratcliffe.

“This data can be used by foreign actors to attempt to communicate false information to registered voters that they hope will cause confusion, sow chaos and undermine your confidence in American democracy,” he said.

Specifically, Ratcliffe continued, Iran has been sending “spoof emails designed to intimidate voters, incite unrest and damage President” Donald Trump.

Minutes before the press conference, The Washington Post reported that US officials had warned state and local authorities that Iran had conducted a deceptive campaign to send threatening emails to Democratic voters while posing as members of the Proud Boys.

A Homeland Security official also told the state and local election administrators on a call Wednesday that holes had been detected in their election websites, the Post reported.

The messages threatened recipients, some of whom were in swing states, to “vote for Trump on Election Day or we will come after you,” the Post reported.

Earlier on Wednesday, the leaders of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence issued a joint statement about “threats from adversaries to US election systems and infrastructure.”

Acting committee Chairman Marco Rubio (R-FL) and the Vice Chairman Mark Warner (D-VA) said they “urge every American – including members of the media – to be cautious about believing or spreading unverified, sensational claims related to votes and voting.”

The news comes a day before President Donald Trump and his Democratic opponent, former Vice President Joe Biden, are scheduled to take part in the final presidential debate.