US intelligence officials who in 2020 declared the New York Post’s story about corruption in the Biden family to be “Russian disinformation” did so with intent to sway the presidential election in Joe Biden’s favor, according to new testimony.

In an October 19, 2020, letter, 51 intelligence chiefs claimed “that the arrival on the US political scene of emails purportedly belonging to Vice President Biden’s son Hunter, much of it related to his serving on the Board of the Ukrainian gas company Burisma, has all the classic earmarks of a Russian information operation.”

“If we are right, this is Russia trying to influence how Americans vote in this election, and we believe strongly that Americans need to be aware of this,” they added, providing weak explanations to justify their claim, which included mainstream media articles.

Joe Biden, mainstream media outlets, and social media platforms used the letter to discredit the story in the days before the presidential election and accuse President Trump of being aided by the Kremlin.

Almost 50 percent of Biden voters knew nothing of the Hunter Biden scandal at the time of the election and about 16 percent said they would not have voted for Biden had they known, according to a survey from The Media Research Center.

Defense Intelligence Agency Deputy Director Douglas Wise in January admitted that the intelligence officials knew the Hunter Biden story was real at the time but signed the letter anyway.

Now another one of the letter’s signatories, former CIA Deputy Director Michael Morell, has provided congressional testimony alleging that now-Secretary of State Antony Blinken was one of the driving forces behind the letter, whose express purpose was to leverage the official titles of the intelligence officials to impact the election for Joe Biden.

On October 17, 2020, Blinken, who was then a senior advisor to Biden’s campaign, reached out to Morell and convinced him to sign the statement declaring the New York Post story “Russian disinformation”. Prior to Blinken’s call, Morell had no intent of putting out such a statement.

The Biden campaign strategized about releasing the statement. Morell sent an email to Deputy Chief of Staff and Senior Advisor to CIA Director John Brennan Nick Shapiro saying that the Biden campaign wanted the statement sent to a particular reporter at the Washington Post.

During the final presidential debate on October 22, Biden was asked about the New York Post story, in response to which he cited the letter.

“Look, there are 50 former national intelligence folks who said that what this, [President Trump’s] accusing me of is a Russian plan.

“They have said this has all the characteristics—four—five former heads of the CIA, both parties, say what he’s saying is a bunch of garbage. Nobody believes it except him and his good friend Rudy Giuliani,” said Biden.

Following the debate, Biden campaign Chairman Steve Ricchetti called Morell to thank him for signing the statement.

According to Morell’s recent testimony before the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees, there were two intents to the letter.

“One intent was to share our concern with the American people that the Russians were playing on this issue; and, two, it was [to] help Vice President Biden,” testified Morell.

“You wanted to help the Vice President why?” asked House Judiciary Committee Rep. Jim Jordan.

“Because I wanted him to win the election,” Morell confirmed.

In a letter to Blinken Thursday, Rep. Jordan acknowledged that while the intelligence officials are free to express their opinions, “their reference to their national security credentials lent weight to the story and suggested access to specialized information unavailable to other Americans.”

“This concerted effort to minimize and suppress public dissemination of the serious allegations about the Biden family was a grave disservice to all American citizens’ informed participation in our democracy,” wrote Jordan, who is demanding to see all Blinken’s communications between October and November 2020 regarding Hunter Biden’s emails.

According to a January lawsuit, a conglomerate of the world’s largest mainstream news outlets and tech companies called the Trusted News Initiative decided to sideline or ban any reporting that treated the Hunter Biden story as credible.