If you’ve seen the way Donald Trump has operated during this wild presidential campaign then you surely knew that he wasn’t going to sit on his hands or keep his quips to Twitter during the Democratic National Convention, and during a news conference in Doral, Florida, Trump swung back. On the issue of Russia, hacking, and the ever-popular Hillary Clinton email talking point, though, he may have gone a bit too far by saying that he hopes that Russia has Clinton’s 33,000 missing emails if they are, in fact, behind the DNC email leak.
“If they hacked, they probably have her 33,000 emails. I hope they do. They probably have her 33,000 emails that she lost and deleted. Because you’d see some beauties there. So let’s see.”
Trump later doubled down, addressing Russia directly through the media.
“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing. I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by the press.”
It’s worth noting that Trump dismissed the notion that he had any connection to Russia or the DNC email hack, casting doubt on the assessment that Russia was involved (he pointed a finger in China’s direction, instead). Yet the headline is that a major party candidate for President of the United States just said that he hopes a foreign power has sensitive US documents.
Is Trump so concerned about the contents of those lost emails and certain that they might metaphorically disqualify Hillary Clinton from serving as President that he feels that the information needs to get out? Possibly, and while many would say those motivations would be political, Trump could wrap himself in the flag and cry out for the greater good. If you look at Trump’s history regarding the release of sensitive information, though, this feels like a bit of an about face. Here’s Trump on NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden from a 2013 Fox & Friends interview.
“I think Snowden is a terrible threat, I think he’s a terrible traitor, and you know what we used to do in the good old days when we were a strong country — you know what we used to do to traitors, right?”
Why does Donald Trump have a noose in his hands when talking about Edward Snowden releasing sensitive information but pom poms when talking about Russia getting ahold of Hillary Clinton’s lost emails? These aren’t exactly the same thing, but they’re close enough to make you wonder.