During an interview with ABC's George Stephanopoulos, which aired on Sunday, President Donald Trump inadvertently undermined the conspiracy theory he put forward to keep him from winning the 2016 election.
After Trump proclaimed the top FBI brass "lowlives," Trump claimed that the entire investigation into Russian interference and the role of his campaign was "a setup" President Barack Obama "must have known" , and referred to a text message from August 2016, in which the then FBI agent Peter Strzok mentioned "an insurance policy", Stephanopoulos asked him a critical question.
"If they were determined to stop you from becoming president, why not let them expire before?" He said. [1
"You know what, you have to ask her," Trump said. "And you know what – if that had happened before the elections, I probably would not have had enough time to defend myself."
In other words, even Trump agrees that high-ranking FBI officials have heard of Trump The contacts of the election campaign with Russia, which were investigated in the months before the elections, would probably have been fatal for his presidential hopes.
The President inadvertently undermines the claim of "deep state" by admitting that a leak had been fatal over the FBI investigation prior to the election.
"If that had happened before the election, I would not have had enough time to defend myself. pic.twitter.com/HgLFAb9G1l
– Josh Campbell (@joshscampbell) June 16, 2019
But that did not happen. Instead, then-FBI director James Comey repeatedly published the investigation of Hillary Clinton's e-mails through the office, while Trump's confidant Rudy Giuliani was apparently the recipient of leaks. Two days before Comey sent a letter to Congress announcing that the Clinton email case was reopened, Giuliani went to Fox News and said Comey had "one or two surprises of which you are in." the next two days ". Giuliani later admitted to being informed about the "surprise".
In short, the current schedule of events in 2016 suggests that the FBI's actions for Trump's campaign were more positive than negative. But this reality is impractical for Trump, so he tries to rewrite history in more ways than one.
The FBI Actually Had Good Reason to Initiate a Trial of Counterintelligence in the Trump Campaign The FBI has attempted to derail Trump's presidential bid by leaking or otherwise, but it is worth noting that the brass authority has a good reason had to investigate Trump at all.
The FBI launched an investigation into the Trump campaign's contacts with Russia After the Australian top diplomat in the UK in July 2016 bragged to his American colleagues about a conversation with George Papadopoulos, a Trump foreign policy advisor, boasted Papadopoulos during a night of heavy drinking in London told the Australian about his knowledge that Russia has politically polluted Hillary Clinton in the form of "thousands of e-mails that would embarrass him, donkey Mrs. Clinton, who was apparently stolen to try to damage their campaign, "the New York Times said in a December 2017 report.
You do not have to take the word for the Times. Even the so-called " Nunes Memo ", drafted by the then-chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and the outspoken Trump ally Devin Nunes (R-CA) and published early last year, confirms that the FBI is the Trump Campaign has been investigated " triggered " by evidence that American officials were presented that Papadopoulos had secret contacts with Kremlin agents when he was released about a year ago.
But Trump and his allies have attempted to tarnish the waters over the origins of Russia's investigation by insisting that it indeed began with the Steele dossier, an untested opposition research document containing outrageous allegations about it, that the Russian government records Trump as prostitutes urinate on a hotel bed in Moscow in 2013 . Fox News helped Trump normalize the lie, and Trump's supporters spread it during national television interviews – even on Sunday when Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA) did so at Meet the Press did .
At Meet the Press, @SteveScalise lies about the origin of the Russia investigation, claiming basis "was information that the Democratic Party got from Russia." (The origin was in fact that the Trump campaign was involved in a loop about Russian hacks.)
However, Host Chuck Todd lets Scalise lie unpunished pic.twitter.com/k979M0GmdM
– Aaron Rupar (@ atrupar) June 16, 2019
Although the Nunes memo and the Müller report acknowledge that the Russia investigation was conducted by Papadopoulos, who boasted about his insider knowledge of the actions of Russian hackers, Trump's efforts and its allies to question this effect. There are several active investigations into the origins of the Russia investigation, and during his testimony to the Senate last month, Attorney General William Barr suggested without proof that history contains more than previously publicly revealed.
Trump and his allies fight with tough interviewers.
The gaping hole in Trump's FBI conspiracy theory identified by Stephanopoulos in his question has long been one for which the Trump allies – at least in contexts where there are interlocutors – are hard-pressed to challenge them. During an interview in late 2017, CNN host John Berman quickly unmasked Jim Jordan (R-OH) when he repeated Trump, claiming that the FBI had released it for Trump.
"You think James Comey – it went all the way to the top of the FBI – so that Donald Trump does not become president," Berman said. "If that's true, why did he come out and investigate Hillary Clinton's emails and never tell us about the investigation into alleged Trump collusion before the election, if he tried to stop Donald Trump from voting? Do not you think he could tell voters? "
All Jordan could say to Berman was," We'll find out, "you must ask her." Trump offered Stephanopoulos.  The news is moving fast – to stay up to date, follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter and read more about Vox's Politics and Reporting .