REPORT: White House Begged Intel Agencies to Justify ‘The President’s Crazy Tweet’
More Questions Arise About Trump, Nunes and Russia
The news cycle is no longer dominated by new developments in the Trump-Russia investigation. The last few weeks have seen the narrative change as global and national events altered the discussion. President Trump interrupted his beautiful cake to fire missiles into Syria. He attempted, with varying degrees of success, to send aircraft carriers towards North Korea. His friendly media host is on the verge of losing his job. But a stunning and detailed report from New Yorker Ryan Lizza columnist is a sobering reminder why the country can’t take its collective eyes off of the investigation, who our intel agencies serve and the ethics investigation into Congressman Devin Nunes (R-CA). Nor should we ignore the impact of one specific tweet.
The morning of March 4, 2016, provided modern progressives with their own “where were you when you heard about it” moment. From his weekend White House in Mar-A-Lago, Trump launched an outrageous accusation at President Obama:
Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my "wires tapped" in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 4, 2017
Neither he nor his communications department offered any evidence to back up the claim at the time. Now, according to Lizza, they actually worked in reverse to find something to make the allegation stick.
‘Find Something That Justifies the President’s Crazy Tweet’
Lizza reports that he spoke to two sources within the intel community: “one who read the entire binder of intercepts and one who was briefed on their contents.” According to his contacts, the White House knew there was nothing to back up the president’s charges.
The intelligence source told me that he knows, “from talking to people in the intelligence community,” that “the White House said, ‘We are going to mobilize to find something to justify the President’s tweet that he was being surveilled.’ They put out an all-points bulletin”—a call to sift through intelligence reports—“and said, ‘We need to find something that justifies the President’s crazy tweet about surveillance at Trump Tower.’ And I’m telling you there is no way you get that from those transcripts, which are about as plain vanilla as can be.” (The White House did not respond to a request for comment.)
If what Lizza’s sources allege are accurate, this aspect of the investigation could possibly be the most troublesome. The President of the United States hurled an unfounded declaration that his predecessor and worked backward in an attempt to even remotely provide proof. All while having an ally in Nunes, who chaired the House Committee investigating the connection with Russia.
No, Mr. President. McCarthyism isn’t the historical comparison that this incident reeks of.
You’re thinking of Nixonian.
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