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U.S. will retaliate against Russian interference in the election, Obama says

 (Mark Wilson / Getty Images)
(Mark Wilson / Getty Images)

President Obama on Friday threatened Russia with retaliation for the election-season hacking of Democratic emails, promising, “We can do stuff to you.”

Obama would not specify what the retaliatory actions would be but said they would be designed to make Moscow think twice about such cyber actions in the future.

“Certain actions” are on the way, Obama said during his final news conference of the year. Some of the actions “we can divulge publicly,” others the public will never hear about.

“The idea that public shaming is going to be effective I think doesn’t read the thought process in Russia very well,” Obama said.

Intelligence officials have said they have little doubt that the hacks were part of a Russian effort to influence the outcome of the election. The hacks revealed internal communications of the Democratic National Committee and the campaign of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

Russian officials deny involvement and say the U.S. should show more proof or let the subject drop. Obama has ordered his intelligence network to run a full review before Republican Donald Trump is inaugurated on Jan. 20.

In an interview on National Public Radio that aired earlier in the day, Obama said, “There are still a whole range of assessments taking place among the agencies.

“When I receive a final report, we'll be able to [have] a comprehensive and best guess as to those motivations.

“But that does not in any way, I think, detract from the basic point that everyone during the election perceived accurately — that in fact what the Russian hack had done was create more problems for the Clinton campaign than it had for the Trump campaign.

“There's no doubt that it contributed to an atmosphere in which the only focus for weeks at a time, months at a time, were Hillary's emails, the Clinton Foundation, political gossip surrounding the DNC,” Obama said.

The U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence plans to investigate Russia's actions, committee Chairman Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) said Friday.

The committee will interview senior officials “of both the outgoing and incoming administrations,” issuing subpoenas if necessary, Burr said in a written statement.

Much of the committee's work is likely to be behind closed doors, however, although it may open some of the hearings “to help inform the public about the issues,” Burr said.

The Senate Armed Services Committee, under its chairman, Sen. John McCain of Arizona, also plans to investigate.

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