What would a day in the Trump age be like without a befuddling Trump Tweet to ponder? Today is no different, with Trump making the assertion that James Comey wasn’t doing his investigation into Hillary Clinton properly. Obviously, he’d like to paint the picture that the system is “rigged” as stories of the special counsel Mueller investigations dominate the news, but we can easily deconstruct and debunk this Tweet right now…
The Trump Tweet at 7:45 AM:
“Wow, looks like James Comey exonerated Hillary Clinton long before the investigation was over…and so much more. A rigged system!”
Wow, looks like James Comey exonerated Hillary Clinton long before the investigation was over…and so much more. A rigged system!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 1, 2017
POLITICO White House reporter, Josh Dawsey, destroys any substance of the Tweet in seconds:
“When firing Comey, Trump’s White House put out a lengthy letter saying it was essentially because Comey was too tough on Clinton.”
When firing Comey, Trump's White House put out a lengthy letter saying it was essentially because Comey was too tough on Clinton. https://t.co/ZXAwQf8kum
— Josh Dawsey (@jdawsey1) September 1, 2017
Trump cheered on Comey 8 days before the presidential election, saying, “It took guts for director Comey to make the move that he made.” He was referring to Comey’s decision to make the probe into Clinton’s emails public, right before the election. Which certainly worked great for Trump.
Then in May, Trump fired Comey under the pretext that Comey’s handling of Clinton’s email case was wrong. Today’s Tweet runs counter to his previous excuse for firing Comey and also sets the stage to further discredit the FBI. That might work for Trump (in his mind only). In actuality, all of this reeks of obstruction, which is partly why Trump is under investigation now.
Trump’s tweet is likely a reaction to a predictable source: Fox News, who ran a story titled, “Comey began drafting ‘exoneration statement’ before interviewing Clinton, senators say.” The article is based on statements from two Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Chuck Grassley, and Lindsey Graham. They claim Comey began drafting his statement about Clinton before interviewing key witnesses.
This checks out with CBS News, and will no doubt be used by Trump supporters to back up Trump’s decision to fire Comey, only the problem with that is –Trump told NBC News that he fired Comey because of what he called a about his ties to Russia. How much more convoluted can we get?
Now consider this Tweet by Melissa McEwan, Editor-in-Chie of Shakesville.com:
“This is the President of the United States calling the federal government “a rigged system.” That is incredibly dangerous. And telling.”
This is the President of the United States calling the federal government "a rigged system." That is incredibly dangerous. And telling. https://t.co/mTpJcTx8rV
— Melissa McEwan (@Shakestweetz) September 1, 2017
With his Tweet, Trump is telling his followers that they should not trust the government. A government that is now investigating him instead of Clinton. Though he once praised Comey for his guts, and wanted to use the powers of the government to “Lock her up!,” now Trump is setting the stage to discredit the FBI, whatever their findings may be in the Trump-Russia investigations. Would he want to discredit the FBI, with his newly appointed Director, Christopher A. Wray, if he were optimistic about his future outlook?
He’s also following the usual pattern on Twitter, basing his Tweets on Fox News and attacking others.
It has already been documented that Trump uses Twitter this way: “[…] Trump seems to use the majority of those messages to do some combination of making false statements, picking on people, or complaining about unfair things are for him.”
One out of every 8 Trump tweets referenced fake news sources, out of 610 tweets he likely authored. One out of every two “are some combination of him insulting/mocking/slandering someone, whining/grousing about something being unfair, and making false statements (if not outright lying).”
Today his Tweets go further to convince a gullible base that government investigations are rigged, since it isn’t working in his favor, and could lead down the road to impeachment. Before the election, his talk of rigged systems might have had more impact, but now he’s in the White House and part of the system he continues to discredit on Twitter. However, when the Mueller investigation is over, he’ll need more than Twitter to save him. He’ll need facts –something he definitely isn’t fond of, to begin with.