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The Day Trump Was Reportedly Briefed About Russian Bounties, Trump Hit Back Hard — at CNN

February 27, 2020. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.

President Donald Trump was clearly upset on the date he was reportedly briefed about Russian bounties on the lives U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan, as he lashed out at what he views as his “enemy” — CNN.

Trump is alleged to have been briefed on the Russian program as early as 2019, but new reporting from The New York Times pinpoints one of those briefings to a specific date: February 27, 2020. As it happens, Trump was busy that day retaliating against other enemies.

According to Trump’s schedule for that day, he received his daily intelligence briefing at 2:30 p.m., and there’s a big gap in his Twitter feed between then and his first tweet following that briefing. But when he finally logged on, after participating in a Black History Month reception, he went right to work.

First, he quoted now-fired Fox Business host Trish Regan’s anti-CNN, anti-coronavirus “panic” screed, and added “media refuses to discuss the great job our professionals are doing!”

After a quick break to praise his administration’s response to the “small number” of coronavirus cases and a quick shot at former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, Trump turned his attention back to CNN.

Quoting Regan again, he wrote “Diagnosis positive: @CNN is infected with Trump Derangement Syndrome. I’m calling out CNN for irresponsibly politicizing what should be a unifying battle against a virus that doesn’t choose sides.”

“Like I say, they are Fake News!” Trump added.

Trump also took the time to bolster important allies — like Diamond and Silk.

In another fascinating coincidence, it was the day after this briefing that Trump announced his nomination of current Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe, the same person now responsible for briefing members of Congress.

The White House maintains Trump was never briefed “in person” on the bounty program.

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