Former Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson said Wednesday that he could not explain why the Democratic National Committee did not turn over its hacked servers to law enforcement.
Johnson, who headed the Department of Homeland Security in the second half of the Obama administration, was testifying before the House Intelligence Committee about Russia's role in the 2016 presidential election.
Rep. Trey Gowdy (R., S.C.) asked Johnson about the DNC not giving the server to authorities for the investigation.
"Twice now you have said that you could have camped out in front of the DNC and I would say in defense of you, it wouldn't have made any difference if you had, because they weren't going to give you the server," Gowdy said. "So if you're investigating either from the law enforcement or from an intelligence standpoint, the hacking by foreign hostile government, wouldn't you want the server?"
"Wouldn't that help you, number one, identify who the attacker was, and if memory serves me, this was early in the summer of 2016 when we learned of the DNC hack, so if they had turned the server over to either you or [former FBI] Director [James] Comey, maybe we would have known more and maybe there would have been more for you to report?" Gowdy asked. "So I guess what I'm asking you is, why would the victim of a crime not turn over a server to the intelligence community or to law enforcement?"
"I'm not going to argue with you, sir," Johnson answered.
Johnson went on to say with a laugh that Gowdy's question was "leading," although earlier in the hearing Gowdy had told Johnson to tell him if any of his questions accidentally sounded as though they were doing just that.