Trump needs spokesman who speaks (well) for him and his tweets
Rather than focusing on important issues facing the country, official Washington has devolved into an embarrassing match of Democrats-said-President-Trump-said, in a daily war of words and tweets. Allegations of Russia rigging the US election and President Obama wiretapping Trump Tower sound like something straight out of a spy novel or a game of Clue.
And President Trump doesn’t help himself when it comes to winning the battle of legitimacy, when he posts an outlandish tweet and then doesn’t trot out competent White House manpower to defend his claim to the media.
Around 6:30 a.m. Eastern Time this past Saturday, Trump roused the Twittersphere and sent it into a tailspin with this tweet contortions:
“Obama had my wires tapped in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism.”
Trump served up no evidence; and of course the liberal media went ballistic. When you accuse a former president of committing illegal wiretapping, the likes of which got President Richard Nixon impeached, you’re gonna catch hell from everyone. Knowing this, as Trump did, it is even more perplexing that White House Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders’ communications did such a clumsy job handling the press.
During an interview with ABC’s This Week host Martha Raddatz, she actually used to the term “B.S.” twice. Then Sanders told Raddatz that she couldn’t speak with “100%” certitude about Trump’s allegations, (and um) nor had she consulted with the president.
SANDERS: Look, I — I will let the president speak for himself. But in terms of where we are in the White House, our ask –
RADDATZ: You’re his spokesperson.
SANDERS: And I’m speaking about it right now.
Yet Sanders was not speaking with any credibility.
As ambassador of the White House, Sanders should have stuck to two points. The New York Times reported that anonymous senior Obama White House officials ordered the surveillance (spying) of Trump campaign associates. The raw (unverified) intelligence was spread like confetti, far and wide not only across the US government to people without security clearances and members of Congress but also shared with foreign governments. Why do this unless you wanted to trash the next president?
Sanders should have reminded Raddatz that Obama was indeed their boss at the time and it’s highly unlikely that he didn’t sanction the sleuthing. So, is it really that preposterous to believe that Obama couldn’t have ordered the wiretapping of Trump Tower? No more outlandish than the Trump-Russia connection ….
An even more salient point that Sanders needed to make was that days before the inauguration, Obama ordered the National Security Agency to share raw intelligence with 16 other intelligence agencies. Previously, the NSA would share only the data redacted of irrelevant personal information. Now this is stuff leaks are made. Holdover Obama political appointees likely leaked raw intelligence to the press about Michael Flynn’s calls with the Russian ambassador. Flynn did nothing wrong but was forced to resign as Trump’s NSA adviser amid the liberals’ Russia conspiracy hysteria.
Obama loyalists also leaked information to the press about Attorney General Jeff Sessions meeting with the Russian ambassador, hoping to force his resignation. But Sessions made it clear that these meetings occurred in his capacity as a US Senator and member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee not as a Trump surrogate.
Collectively, these actions committed by Obama and his politically-vengeful White House warrant the same level of scrutiny that Congress and the intelligence community have given Trump.