Donald Trump cannot leave well enough alone on twitter. In the past month alone he has 1. tanked his own Muslim travel ban by admitting that it was in fact a “travel ban,” and the ACLU pounced on that like it was catnip; 2. made admissions about “obstruction of justice,” which will come back to bite him in the butt at a later date, lawyers predict; 3. and now he’s got a new conspiracy theory revved up via twitter, about the White House being bugged by unnamed spies. Details from The Daily Beast:
But then, unprompted, he floated another possibility: U.S. intelligence or law enforcement officials might have his office bugged. “With all of the recently reported electronic surveillance, intercepts, unmasking and illegal leaking of information, I have no idea whether there are ‘tapes’ or recordings of my conversations with James Comey,” Trump wrote.
It was a bizarre suggestion that took some in the White House off guard. “No clue what the thinking was,” a White House staffer said of the tweets. “He could’ve just said there are no tapes. It’s baffling, frankly.”
Instead of putting the “tape” issue to rest and leave it at that, Trump’s statements threaten to embroil the White House in yet another round of politically inconvenient questioning about issues—Comey’s firing, the FBI’s probe into Russian election-meddling, and Trump’s reported efforts to hobble it—that the White House has tried, with little success, to move past.
Informed of the president’s denial that he had recorded his conversations with Comey, a senior administration official replied, “At least that’s behind us.” When alerted to his apparent suspicions of Oval Office surveillance, the official replied in a text message, “fml.”
That’s shorthand for “fuck my life.”
Had Trump not threatened Comey with the prospect of “tapes” of their conversations, Comey might not have leaked details of his memos. If those details hadn’t become public, the Justice Department might not have been pressured to appoint a special counsel. And without that special counsel, former FBI director Robert Mueller, news that Trump himself is personally under investigation might have been kept under wraps.With Mueller leading the Russia investigation, Trump again plotted ways to ensure that it would be resolved in his favor. He began floating the possibility of firing Mueller, a move that his advisers strenuously opposed, but that nonetheless received public attention when floated on television by Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy, a friend of the president’s.
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