Sarah Huckabee Sanders lies daily and comfortably and so it’s a little odd to find an instance of her lying that’s noteworthy. But Sanders outdid herself during Thursday’s briefing—reading a pre-written answer from the podium that included a blatant lie about the Russia investigation.

Sanders tell a White House reporter that when the FBI sought a warrant to surveil Trump campaign aide Carter Page, the bureau never told the FISA judge that some of the material agents were using to make their case was funded by an opposing campaign. “They failed to disclose to the judge that the dossier was funded by the Clinton campaign and the DNC,” Sanders claimed.

Sanders anticipated a question about Trump’s griping about the FISA process so she pre-scripted a tale that would suggest the Republican and Democratic memos on the FISA application were in agreement with each other (couldn’t be further from the truth) and the FBI wasn’t honest about the political nature of the Steele Dossier (which, by the way, was far from the only piece of evidence agents presented in support of their application to wiretap Page). As Vox explained, Sanders’ claim is just bogus:

Schiff quotes a lengthy passage from the actual application the FBI sent to the FISA court asking for permission to snoop on Page. In the key line, the application explicitly notes that “the FBI speculates” that Steele had been hired to find “information that could be used to discredit Candidate #1’s [Trump’s] campaign.”

That’s it. That’s the ballgame. The FBI clearly states right there in the FISA application that they believe Steele was hired to find dirt on Trump. Since the core contention of the Nunes memo is that the FBI didn’t do that, Nunes’s entire argument falls apart.

Compare that to exactly what Sanders said:

Look, the president’s made clear he has a lot of concerns like you said with the current FISA process. Nothing makes the problems of FISA cleaner than what was outlined in both the Republican and Democrat memos. The FBI used political campaign material to get a warrant to spy on American citizens. They failed to disclose to the judge that the dossier was funded by the Clinton campaign and the DNC even as it was being used to spy on people associated with the Trump campaign. Obviously that alone shows us that the process needs to be looked at closely and reformed to make sure that we’re doing everything we can to protect the privacy of American citizens. (emphasis added)

Yes, Trump and his entire staff, including Sanders, have proven to be habitual liars. But it’s still worth noting that a White House spokesperson went to the trouble of sitting down and typing out such a flagrant lie on an issue as important as the Russia probe.

When Hope Hicks told investigators Tuesday that she felt required to tell white lies as a part of her job in Donald Trump’s White House, one wonders whether premeditated lying about issues as serious as national security and sovereignty is something she would categorize as a “white lie.”

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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.


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