Another day, another “anonymous” source telling the mainstream media damaging things about Donald Trump. This time it’s the New York Times, “reporting” that the president allegedly told Russian officials that firing FBI director James Comey took “great pressure” off of him.
NYT claims, based on a document from an unidentified source summarizing the meeting:
“I just fired the head of the F.B.I. He was crazy, a real nut job,” Mr. Trump said, according to the document, which was read to The New York Times by an American official. “I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off.”
Mr. Trump added, “I’m not under investigation.”
Mediaite reports that Press Secretary Sean Spicer has responded to the NYT piece with a statement that neither confirms nor denies Trump’s words, but suggests that “pressure” referred not to Trump personally benefiting from the firing, but to Comey’s politicized conduct needlessly interfering with diplomacy between the United States and Russia:
— Mark Murray (@mmurraypolitics) May 19, 2017
On the one hand, one has to admit that our current pressure is not exactly the most, shall we say, careful speaker, and it’s sadly not hard at all to imagine him casually dropping something like this in conversation without realizing how it sounded.
But as to the substance of the charge, it’s more smoke with no fire. Even Democrat Dianne Feinstein has been forced to admit there’s no actual evidence of collusion between Trump and Russia, and Comey’s firing was a long time coming for his dereliction of duty regarding Hillary Clinton and Emailgate.
As for specific reasons to doubt this latest story, there are plenty. For instance, Allahpundit at Hot Air notes that this would be “the second time in four days that the Times has dropped a bombshell on Trump over a memo it hasn’t actually seen.”
Nickarama at Young Conservatives also makes a great point: “It doesn’t even make sense that anyone would say that, as the investigation continues and firing him wouldn’t have stopped it. Moreover, the firing created even more attention, not less.”
Between the White House and the press that hates it, there’s never a slow news day in Trump’s America.
H/T: Young Cons