• Trump declines daily intelligence briefings because he's 'a smart person'

    By: Theresa Seiger , Cox Media Group National Content Desk

    Updated:

    Since he won the race to the White House last month, Donald Trump has declined to get daily intelligence briefings because he's "a smart person," the president-elect said Sunday.

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    "I get it when I need it," Trump said in an interview with Fox News' Chris Wallace. "You know, I'm like, a smart person. I don't have to be told the same thing and the same words every single day for the next eight years. It could be eight years – but eight years. I don't need that."

    Trump's views are in contrast with his recent predecessors, who have generally received the highly classified president's daily brief on a regular basis, Reuters reported. However, Trump's stance isn't unique. David Priess, a former briefer for the CIA, told Reuters that President Richard Nixon accepted the president's daily brief only in paper form, and often returned them to intelligence officials unopened.

    Trump told Wallace that his generals and Vice President-elect Mike Pence are also getting briefings. Unidentified sources told Reuters that the Indiana governor is getting intelligence briefings at least six days a week.

    "And I'm being briefed also," Trump said. "But if they're going to come in and tell me the exact same thing that they told me, you know, that doesn't change, necessarily. There might be times where it might change. I mean, there will be some very fluid situations. I'll be there not every day but more than that."

    Trump's comments came as tension grows between the president-elect and the intelligence community, stemming from a recent CIA assessment that concluded with "high confidence" that Russia intervened in the election. Trump called the report "ridiculous" and said he believes that Democrats are pushing the report to soothe themselves after their defeat in November.

    "I think it's just another excuse. I don't believe it," Trump said. "We had a massive landslide victory, as you know, in the Electoral College."

    Trump won the Electoral College last month with 306 votes to Democratic rival Hillary Clinton's 232. However, Clinton won the popular vote by more than 2 million votes, according to The Associated Press.

    "I think the Democrats are putting (the CIA assessment) out because they suffered one of the greatest defeats in the history of politics in this country," Trump said. "We ought to get back to making America great again, which is what we're going to do."

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