Former CIA official Michael Morell testified that Secretary of State Antony Blinken, then a Biden campaign advisor, played a part in the creation of a false letter signed by 51 ex-intelligence officials that claimed Hunter Biden's laptop was Russian disinformation.
In a recent testimony, former CIA deputy director Michael Morell revealed that Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who was a Biden campaign advisor at the time, contributed to the development of a now-debunked letter signed by 51 former intelligence officials. This letter falsely asserted that the story about Hunter Biden's laptop, published by the New York Post in October 2020, was a Russian disinformation campaign.
Following Morell's testimony, Ohio Representatives Jim Jordan and Michael Turner, who chair the Judiciary and Intel Committees, respectively, sent a letter to Blinken on Thursday. They informed him that their committees are "conducting oversight of federal law-enforcement and intelligence matters within [their] respective jurisdictions" and that they are investigating the public statement discrediting the New York Post story, the Federalist reported. They requested Blinken's assistance in their oversight efforts, as they learned of his involvement in the statement's creation.
According to Morell, on or around October 17, 2020, Blinken contacted him to discuss the Hunter Biden laptop story. This conversation reportedly initiated the events that led to the baseless public statement claiming the laptop was part of a Russian disinformation campaign. Morell confirmed that Blinken's call was instrumental in his decision to write the statement.
Blinken was not the only Biden campaign official in contact with Morell regarding the statement. Steve Ricchetti, Biden's campaign chairman, thanked Morell personally for releasing the statement after the October 22, 2020 presidential debate. Morell also claimed that the Biden campaign was involved in strategically disseminating the statement to the public, including sending it to a specific reporter at the Washington Post.
Morell's testimony revealed that the statement had two purposes: one was to inform the American people about alleged concerns that the Russians were exploiting the issue; the other was to help then-Vice President Biden win the election. The debunked letter was used by corporate media to dismiss the New York Post story implicating the Biden family, and Joe Biden himself cited it during a debate with then-President Donald Trump.
“Look, there are 50 former national intelligence folks who said that what this, [President Trump’s] accusing me of is a Russian plan,” Biden said. “They have said this has all the characteristics — four, five former heads of the CIA, both parties, say what he’s saying is a bunch of garbage. Nobody believes it except him and his good friend Rudy Giuliani.”
Following the laptop story's publication, Big Tech platforms, including Twitter and Facebook, launched a concerted effort to suppress the story's circulation. In an August interview, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg admitted that Facebook had algorithmically suppressed stories about Hunter Biden's laptop during the 2020 election after the FBI warned them about potential Russian propaganda.
In their letter to Blinken, Representatives Jordan and Turner requested that the Secretary of State provide all relevant documents and communications, and identify all individuals with whom he communicated about the October 2020 statement. They have set a deadline of May 4 for Blinken to respond.