This week, Rhode Island Representative David Cicilline, wrote a letter to President Barack Obama, asking him to suspend Donald Trump’s classified intelligence briefing — a courtesy offer that has been extended to presidential nominees since 1952.
The letter comes days after Trump said he hoped Russia had hacked emails from Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. This statement comes as experts say Russian hacking groups are behind the Democratic National Convention email leak.
Cicilline said Trump’s comments “crossed the line” and were a “very serious error in judgment.”
In an interview with CNN senior political reporter Manu Raju, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid suggested that the Central Intelligence Agency should “give [Trump] fake briefings.” But Cicilline said rather than providing false information, the practice of sharing information should just be suspended.
“We should insist that that courtesy not be observed if it will in fact compromise the national security interest of the United States,” Cicilline added. “I think in light of statements of Mr. Trump, the President has a responsibility to consider this carefully and I know the president will.”
Both Democrats and Republicans alike have criticized Trump for encouraging a foreign government to commit espionage and influence a U.S. election. Cicilline said he has yet to hear back from Obama, but expects to receive a response soon.