As part of your now daily reminder that the sitting president regularly makes official statements via Twitter, Donald Trump announced yesterday that he’d never actually gone full Nixon and taped his conversations with fired FBI director James Comey. But because he can’t quite bring himself to make a declarative statement (unless it’s about a whole country), Trump also said that there are maybe tapes out there somewhere, who knows? It’s just that they’re not his tapes; well, “not his tapes” in the sense that he didn’t personally see to their recording, but not in the sense that, if someone did make them, they’d have his voice on them.
If that word salad weren’t enough, the president stopped to talk to Fox & Friends this morning about calling his own bluff, and delivered one of the most incomprehensible statements ever transmitted via Fox News air waves (or, in this case, Twitter. Again).
Trump—who, again, is the president, and not just someone touring the White House with his wife—starts off strong, managing to tell the reporter that he never made tapes. But then he starts rambling about surveillance operations from previous administrations, and all the reading he’s been doing these last few months, and did you know America’s been a country for 241 years now, and how can he be expected to keep up with all his wheelings and dealings (which are very much still a thing) and the previous presidents’, and do you like his tie?
The Fox & Friends correspondent gamely tries to get him back on track with praise, telling Trump that he kept Comey “honest” at the Congressional hearing by being a little dishonest himself—well, in so many words. Trump’s response: “Well, it wasn’t very stupid, I can tell you that.” To his credit, he didn’t immediately follow that up with “but it wasn’t not very dumb” or anything, so maybe he’s learning after all.