In the final days of the presidential campaign past year, two Democratic senators asked President Obama to take action against Russian Federation for its election meddling.
The outgoing administration also approved a cyberwarfare campaign targeted at Russian infrastructure, but the program was still in development when Donald Trump took office.
And after the election, some of the harsher options for punishing Russian Federation, like a massive cyberattack on them, or sweeping sanctions, faced concerns and roadblocks from a number of corners.
In an early morning tweet, Trump appeared to acknowledge that Russian Federation had meddled in the election.
Other administration officials defended their efforts to the Post. "And I hardly see it".
The Post said that as soon as the intelligence on Putin came in, the White House viewed it as a deep national security threat.
Weeks earlier, the publication by WikiLeaks of emails hacked from the Democratic National Committee proved damaging to Mrs Clinton's campaign.
The CIA gave [Obama] information on Russian Federation a long time before they even - before the election. But you don't read that. Some of them were imposing sanctions on Russian Federation, launch cyberattacks against Russian Federation and embarrassing leaks against Putin. Two months later, Obama expelled 35 Russian diplomats from the U.S.in retaliation for the hacking, but, according to the Post report, the administration ruled out releasing information potentially embarrassing to Putin or enacting harsher sanctions. "It's an incredible thing", Trump told Fox News, one of the promos of the interview showed.
While the Bloomberg report confirmed that the Obama administration did have knowledge of the hacking, the White House was ultimately unwilling to risk public confidence in the election's integrity.
For months, Trump has called Russian meddling fake news. President Donald Trump is reportedly considering returning the compounds, used as retreats, to Russian control, a move opposed by many senators including South Carolina Republican Sen.
The Justice Department, meanwhile, is now conducting a special investigation involving in part whether Mr. Trump's campaign colluded with Russian operatives prior to his inauguration.