Hillary Clinton this week sharply rebuked Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom for his “incredibly surprising and unacceptable” decision to delay the release of a report detailing potential Russian influence in British politics until after the country’s general election on December 12.
“I mean, who do they think they are that they would keep information like that from the public, especially before an election?” the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee told The Guardian newspaper in a report published Monday.
“Well, I’ll tell you who they think they are. They think that they are the all-powerful, strong men who should be ruling,” she said.
Downing Street asserted last week that it needed more time to review the politically sensitive 50-page dossier, citing the security implications of publishing the report by Parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee.
But the chairman of that panel, Dominic Grieve, called the suppression of the document “jaw-dropping,” while critics have accused Johnson of withholding allegations in the report that could be damaging to his Conservative Party ahead of voting next month.
“I’m dumbfounded that this government won’t release the report about Russian influence because every person who votes in this country deserves to see that report before your election happens,” Clinton told the BBC Radio 4 Today news program in remarks that aired Tuesday.
“That should be [an] absolute condition because there is no doubt — we know it in our country, we have seen it in Europe, we’ve seen it here — that Russia, in particular, is determined to try to shape the politics of Western democracies not to our benefit, but to theirs,” she continued.
Clinton’s own White House campaign against Donald Trump three years ago was marred by Kremlin meddling. She has partially blamed Russian interference for her loss, and former special counsel Robert Mueller concluded in his report that Russia’s government “interfered in the 2016 presidential election in sweeping and systematic fashion.”