News and Media
Parties Take Different Stands on Trump Wiretap Allegations
Republicans and Democrats had different reactions to the Presidential tweet-storm early last Saturday morning in which Trump accused former President Obama of wiretapping Trump’s campaign offices last October right before the presidential election.
Republican Congressman Devin Nunes of California said that he would have the House Permanent Select Committee investigate that accusation as part of the larger look into the extent to which Russia interfered with the conduct and outcome of US elections.
“One of the focus points of the House Intelligence Committee’s investigation is the U.S. government’s response to actions taken by Russian intelligence agents during the presidential campaign,” Nunes said. “As such, the Committee will make inquiries into whether the government was conducting surveillance activities on any political party’s campaign officials or surrogates, and we will continue to investigate this issue if the evidence warrants it.”
It is important to note here that although Nunes said that there will be an investigation into Russian interference, and that any wiretapping conducted would have been ordered by appropriate authorities, he did not say that the investigation is of former President Obama’s ordering of the wiretapping, which would have been illegal.
The Democratic response came next, made by Representative Adam Schiff, also from California, who is the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee.
Schiff pointed out the undignified allegations made by Trump, beneath the dignity of the office of the president. Trump
accused Obama without any proof, attribution, or explanation. He accused Obama of “McCarthyism” a reminder of the witch-hunts Congress led in the 1950s, and also referred to the Nixon-Watergate scandal that involved illegal wiretapping and the eventual resignation of President Nixon.
“Today, it became all the more clear that President Trump’s claim that he was illegally wire-tapped by President Obama was based on little more than Breitbart or other conspiracy-based news,” Schiff said. “For a President of the United States to make such an incendiary charge — and one that discredits our democracy in the eyes of the world — is as destructive as it was baseless.”