The Daily Shot, Ricochet, March 6, 2017
The early bird gets the worm. The earliest of all birds is President Trump, who is awake and functioning long before sunrise. If you too are an early bird, you may have caught it at 3:35 am Saturday when he said on Twitter, “Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my ‘wires tapped’ in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!”
This was followed by three more tweets on the topic: “Is it legal for a sitting President to be ‘wire tapping’ a race for president prior to an election? Turned down by court earlier. A NEW LOW!,” “I’d bet a good lawyer could make a great case out of the fact that President Obama was tapping my phones in October, just prior to Election!,” and “How low has President Obama gone to tapp [sic] my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergate. Bad (or sick) guy!” (For context, in the middle of these Tweets was one about the Russian ambassador visiting the Obama White House and they were followed by one talking about Arnold Schwarzenegger.)
To support these ground-shaking claims, the President of the United States presented … no evidence. So, then, what is he talking about? Well, there were reports back in January about a FISA wiretap on Trump Tower. That may be what Trump is referring to, but he was thin on specifics, and these were reports from almost two months ago and earlier. But there is implied (from the fact that he’s the freakin’ President) that Trump has additional information that may not be publicly available.
Trump’s allegations prompted Ben Sasse to issue a statement on Saturday saying, “We are in the midst of a civilization-warping crisis of public trust, and the President’s allegations today demand the thorough and dispassionate attention of serious patriots. A quest for the full truth, rather than knee-jerk partisanship, must be our guide if we are going to rebuild civic trust and health.”
On Sunday, Trump went further, and called for a congressional investigation into the matter and whether President Obama exceeded his authority in doing so. Sean Spicer put out a statement saying that since President Trump is asking for an investigation, “Neither the White House nor the President will comment further until such oversight is conducted.”
Obama administration officials have denied that Trump Tower was tapped, and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said, “For the part of the national security apparatus that I oversaw as DNI, there was no such wiretap activity mounted against the president-elect at the time, as a candidate, or against his campaign.” (However, in general, anything James Clapper says should probably be taken with a grain of salt.)
So what happens now? Well, as Marco Rubio put it, “[W]e’re going to learn more about it here over the next few days, one way or the other.” He added, “I’m not sure what it is he is talking about. Perhaps the President has information that is not yet available to us or to the public. And if it’s true, obviously we’re going to find out very quickly. And if it isn’t, then obviously he’ll have to explain what he meant by it.”