Trump claims Russia probe is ‘McCarthyism’


Donald Trump attacked story. Photo: REUTERS
Donald Trump attacked story. Photo: REUTERS

Donald Trump has said the investigation into his campaign’s links with Russia makes “Joseph McCarthy look like a baby” as he lashed out at reports that the White House’s most senior legal adviser had been drawn into the inquiry.

Sending an unusually long string of tweets, the US president appeared to be rattled by revelations in the ‘New York Times’ that Don McGahn, White House counsel, has spent more than 30 hours talking to agents during voluntary interviews.

Mr McGahn is reported to have described the president’s anger at the investigation and the ways in which he asked his legal team to respond.

That anger was on full display yesterday, when Mr Trump compared Robert Mueller’s investigation with the 1950s hunt for communists, led by Senator Joseph McCarthy, an episode that is remembered today as a dark period in America’s history.

“Study the late Joseph McCarthy, because we are now in a period with Mueller and his gang that make Joseph McCarthy look like a baby! Rigged Witch Hunt,” wrote Mr Trump.

Last week, Mr Trump’s critics accused him of McCarthyism after he stripped the security clearance of John Brennan, the former CIA director.

The exchanges have become part of a regular routine – newspapers publish new details of Mr Mueller’s probe, the president fires off early-morning Twitter broadsides, then his cheerleaders take to Sunday-morning TV shows to fling back accusations of a witch hunt.

Rudy Giuliani, Mr Trump’s personal lawyer, appeared on NBC’s ‘Meet the Press’ soon after Mr Trump’s tweets, but the debate threatened to descend into farce as he tried to suggest that there was no such thing as objective truth.

Mr Giuliani dismissed demands for Mr Trump himself to testify, saying he could be sucked into a ‘he-said, she-said’ squabble.

He said: “When you tell me that he should testify because he’s going to tell the truth and he shouldn’t worry, well that’s so silly because it’s somebody’s version of the truth, not the truth.”

Chuck Todd, the host, countered: “Truth is truth,” to which Mr Giuliani replied: “No, it isn’t truth. Truth isn’t truth.”

document.addEventListener(‘DOMContentLoaded’, function() {
if (!document.querySelectorAll(‘.widget.video.vms’).length) {
var s = document.createElement(‘script’);
s.type = ‘text/javascript’;
s.async = true;
s.src = ‘https://independent.mainroll.com/a/independent_floating_outstream.js?dfp_adunit_l1=InArticleVideo&dfp_adunit_l2=World_News&dfp_adunit_l3=North_America&dfp_adunit_l4=President_Trump&dart_articleId=37231459&dart_art_ID=37231459&dart_kw=%5B%22White%20House%22%2C%22counsel%22%2C%22president%22%2C%22New%20York%20Times%22%2C%22Don%20McGahn%22%2C%22Robert%20Mueller%22%2C%22Trump%22%2C%22Trump%22%2C%22claims%22%2C%22Russia%22%2C%22probe%22%2C%22is%22%2C%22McCarthyism%22%5D&section=worldnews_northamerica_presidenttrump’;
document.getElementById(‘bb-outstream-37199872’).parentElement.appendChild(s);
}
});

#bb-iawr-inarticle- { clear: both; margin: 0 0 15px; }

Mr Giuliani then reflected that his words would become a “bad meme”, a joke widely circulated on social media.

The revelations published on Saturday suggest Mr McGahn shared detailed accounts with investigators about the episodes at the heart of the inquiry into whether Mr Trump obstructed justice.

In six tweets, starting at 7.01am, Mr Trump denied that the counsel was now working with prosecutors.

“But I allowed him and all others to testify – I didn’t have to,” he wrote from his New Jersey golf club.

“I have nothing to hide… and have demanded transparency so that this Rigged and Disgusting Witch Hunt can come to a close.

“The failing @nytimes wrote a Fake piece today implying that because White House Councel Don McGahn was giving hours of testimony to the Special Councel, he must be a John Dean type ‘RAT,'” Mr Trump wrote, misspelling the word “counsel,” as he often does.

He was referring to the Watergate-era White House attorney who turned on Richard Nixon.

William Burck, an attorney for Mr McGahn, said in a statement: “President Trump, through counsel, declined to assert any privilege over Mr McGahn’s testimony, so Mr McGahn answered the Special Counsel team’s questions fulsomely and honestly, as any person interviewed by federal investigators must.”

The ‘New York Times’ tweeted that it stands by the story.

Mr Trump’s original legal team had encouraged Mr McGahn and other White House officials to co-operate with special counsel Robert Mueller, and Mr McGahn spent hours in interviews.

Irish Independent

!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?’http’:’https’;if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+’://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js’;fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document, ‘script’, ‘twitter-wjs’);

(function() {
var zergnet = document.createElement(‘script’);
zergnet.type = ‘text/javascript’; zergnet.async = true;
zergnet.src = (document.location.protocol == “https:” ? “https:” : “http:”) + ‘//www.zergnet.com/zerg.js?id=46430’;
var znscr = document.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0];
znscr.parentNode.insertBefore(zergnet, znscr);
})();