March 5, 2017

James Clapper, the former Director of National Intelligence put to bed Trump’s alt-right conspiracy that President Obama personally ordered an illegal wiretap of Trump Tower in 2016, and when asked by NBC's Chuck Todd if it existed, he unequivocally said, "I can deny it."

The Meet The Press host then replied, "Well, that's an important revelation at this point."

And if I'm not mistaken, if the FBI went through the FISA courts, asking for a wiretap, that in itself is the legal way to take that action, right?

It's been obvious for a very long time that Trump will tweet and say the craziest and most destructive things just to try to control the media narrative, even for a few minutes.

And if his fake news comes directly from the fever swamps of right wing blogs, he's all the more happy for it since they are his biggest supporters.

But Trump's actions are a betrayal of the legitimacy of the Office of the Presidency.

When will Twitter finally categorize Trump's Twitter account as fake news?

Meet The Press host Chuck Todd began his interview with Clapper by asking about another conspiracy tweet and asked, "Let me start with the President's tweets yesterday, this idea that maybe President Obama ordered an illegal wiretap of his offices. If something like that happened, would this be something you would be aware of?"

Clapper replied that although now he can't speak in an official capacity, he 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, or against the candidate, or against his campaign."

Todd continued, "I was just going to say, if the F.B.I., for instance, had a FISA court order of some sort for a surveillance, would that be information you would know or not know?

Clapper replied, "Yes."

Todd: "You would be told this?"

Clapper: "I would know that."

Todd: "If there was a FISA court order--(Yes) --on something like this..."

Clapper: "Something like this, absolutely."

Todd: "And at this point, you can't confirm or deny whether that exists?"

Clapper: "I can deny it."

Todd: "The court order?"

Clapper: "Not-- not to my knowledge.

Todd: "Of anything at Trump Tower?"

Clapper: "No."

Todd: "Well, that's an important revelation at this point."

Yes, it is.

Trump is forcing the media to indulge the whimsy of alt-right extremist talk show hosts and conspiracy theories because the any president's words must be taken seriously when he speaks or tweets them.

It's unfortunate that Trump legitimatizes their ravings, even for a second, but that's Trump's M.O.

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