CIA director John Brennan on Sunday challenged Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s claim that intelligence briefers revealed they were not pleased with President Barack Obama’s counter-terrorism policies.
Trump said at NBC’s Commander-in-Chief Forum last week that he could tell the intelligence officers “were not happy” with the president based on their “body language” during the classified national security briefing he received.
Brennan told CBS’ John Dickerson that he knows the briefers who have met with the presidential candidates, and called them “the quintessential professional intelligence officers.”
“We don’t comment on policy. We don’t give policy recommendations,” Brennan said. “So I am fully confident that they comported themselves with the utmost professionalism and demonstrated their real breadth and depth of intelligence capabilities.”
Discussing what happened during a classified briefing was among the many faux pas Trump has committed during his candidacy. Michael Morell, a CIA veteran who served as acting director under Obama, called Trump’s comments unprecedented and “highly inappropriate.”
“This is the first time that I can remember a candidate for president doing a readout from an intelligence briefing, and it’s the first time a candidate has politicized their intelligence briefing,” Morell said. “Both of those are highly inappropriate and crossed a long standing red line respected by both parties.”
Editor’s note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.