— Meet the Press (@MeetThePress) June 18, 2017
On Friday, President Trump unleashed one of his classic early-morning tweet storms while seemingly confirming that he’s under investigation: “I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt.” Many people came to the natural conclusion that Trump was being probed for obstruction of justice because the Washington Post had recently reported as much. And since Sean Spicer stated that Trump’s tweets are “official statements,” people should be able to rely on them, yes? Well, Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow appeared on Sunday morning’s Meet the Press to clear up some confusion. (Let that sink in for a moment.) Sekulow insisted that Trump is not personally under investigation. Yet:
“He’s responding to what he sees in the media in a way in which he thinks is appropriate to talk to [his followers] … He’s not afraid of the investigation. There is no investigation. I want to be clear here. The tweet about the investigation …. he told James Comey when James Comey was still the FBI director — and James Comey testified to this — to continue that probe, find out what happened there. He’s not worried about this, but there is not an investigation of the president of the United States. Period.”
Lots of confusion abounds in this quote. Sekulow argued that James Comey’s testimony proved that Trump wanted him to continue investigating Michael Flynn’s Russian ties, and this is clearly a false statement from the president’s counsel. Comey’s testimony backed up his relevant memo — which he leaked in the hopes that a special counsel would be appointed — that explicitly stated that Trump had wanted him to kill the investigation into Flynn.
That Trump’s own lawyer sees Comey’s testimony in a vastly different light shines some realization on how Trump’s eldest son is crowing about “exoneration” while at the same time seemingly confirming that the Flynn-pressuring had occurred. In other words, Trump’s advocates are either interpreting Comey’s testimony differently, or they’re simply lying.
Sekulow also insisted that Trump’s tweet was only in response to the WaPo report, and he was really complaining about anonymous sources. The tweet in question does not line up with this claim.
You can watch the full Meet the Press appearance below:
Not much clarity can be gained from this Sekulow’s words, other than perhaps Trump should stop tweeting his random thoughts and possibly inaccurate claims without first confirming them. But we know that won’t happen, if this morning’s batch is any indication.