President Trump recently told The New York Times that he thought Susan Rice committed a crime by trying to unmask names from an intercepted communication. The names involved in the unmasking were nearly all connected to Trump and “coincidentally” found during Trump’s presidential campaign.
Referring to the story, Trump told The New York Times, “I think it’s going to be the biggest story.” When The Times asked if he thought Rice committed a crime, he simply responded, “Do I think? Yes, I think.” Trump’s statements aren’t at all surprising, but those comments did upset some people.
David Axelrod, a former senior adviser to President Obama, was one of many who thought Trump’s statement was uncalled for. In an interview with CNN, Axelrod had the chance to speak his mind:
“To slime someone that way, to accuse someone of a crime without any evidence is beneath the dignity of that office, the office in which he was sitting. Even if it’s not beneath the dignity of the man who currently holds it. … If the President has something to say or evidence to present, present it to the American people, but don’t throw out charges like this and slime people as you sit in the Oval Office and then not back it up.”
Axelrod also believes Trump’s statement was in the wrong because it came just 24 hours before the President meets with Chinese President Xi Jinping. The meeting, in Axelrod’s eyes, is one of the most important meetings Trump has had so far and making claims about Rice Is just wasting time:
“Instead of prepping for that meeting and strategizing for that meeting, he’s calling reporters into level gratuitous, outrageous charges. And in that office was the vice president and five top aides of the President. Don’t they have other things to do?”
President Trump’s claims are much like his claim that Obama had wiretapped him. However, that is true to the extent that the building Trump was in was indeed wiretapped. So it would be assumed Trump isn’t just making a random statement. But until he releases evidence, we’re back to a long trail of bureaucracy.
— OutFrontCNN (@OutFrontCNN) April 5, 2017