Dick Cheney claimed the hacking could be considered an act of war
The Republican veteran has added his weight to the accusations of Russian interference as seething Democratic politicians declare it as “political Pearl Harbour”.
Cheney said: “There’s not any argument at this stage that somehow the election of President Trump was not legitimate, but there’s no question that there was a very serious effort made by Putin and his government, his organisation, to interfere in major ways with our basic, fundamental democratic processes.
“In some quarters, that would be considered an act of war.”
It follows reports that Donald Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, will be interviewed as part of congressional investigations into ties between Trump associates and Russian officials.
Meet Putin's DEADLY National Guards Mon, March 13, 2017
Putin has ordered a snap inspection of his National Guard to make sure the troops are ready for action
Play slideshow 1 of 13
Kushner, an adviser to Trump during his presidential campaign and in the White House, would be the closest person to the president to be questioned in the congressional investigations into Russia's role in the 2016 election.
Cheney was not alone as many Democrats have erupted in anger about Russian meddling in the US Presidential election.
Russian engagement was an act of war
Jackie Speier, a Democratic Representative for California
Jackie Speier, a Democratic Representative for California, said: “I actually think that (Russian) engagement was an act of war, an act of hybrid warfare, and I think that’s why the American people should be concerned about it.”
Senator Ben Cardin went a step further as he described the alleged electoral tampering as “political Pearl Harbour”.
Trumps son in law has been questioned on links to Russia
The Trump Presidency continues to reel under pressure from the Russian hacking scandal, with claims that his associates may have communicated with Russian operatives to coordinate the release of stolen data damaging to Hillary Clinton's election campaign.
Bonnie Watson Coleman, a Democratic House Representative, said: “I think this attack that we’ve experienced is a form of war, a form of war on our fundamental democratic principles.”
Get Quotes on Home Insurance
Trump has refuted claims and calls the Democrats bitter losers
Last week four Russians – two FSB Russian intelligence officers and two criminal hackers – were indicted for breaking into 500 million Yahoo email accounts.
Cheney warned that Putin has operated “in ways that none of his predecessors have done for the last 40 years.”
“I would not underestimate the weight that we as Americans assign to the Russian attempts to interfere with our internal political processes.”