Trump admin whistleblower says officials tried to ‘stifle’ warnings about Putin in the 2020 election
DHS whistleblower Brian Murphy on ABC News. (Screenshot)

During the United States' presidential elections of 2016 and 2020, Donald Trump was clearly the preferred candidate of Russian President Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin. Brian Murphy, who served as undersecretary for intelligence and analysis in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security from 2018 until 2020, discussed the Russian government's preference for Trump during an interview with ABC News' George Stephanopoulos over the weekend — a preference that members of Trump's administration didn't want the intelligence expert to talk about, he said.

Murphy told Stephanopoulos, "In late 2019, early 2020, it was highly classified that President Putin had ordered all of the Russian services to denigrate all of the Democratic candidates and support then-President Trump. So, there was a push-on, across government, at the senior levels — the cabinet officials — to do everything possible to stifle, to get anything out to the American public or our overseers in Congress about that interference. They did not want the American public to know that the Russians were supporting Trump and denigrating what would soon be President Biden."

After the 2020 election, many leaders in Western Europe — including French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson — were quick to congratulate Joe Biden on his victory. Putin, however, waited more than a month to congratulate Biden.