In eight years of presidency, Barack Obama never had a single staff member resign in scandal. It took President Donald Trump just three weeks.
Just when it looked as if things couldn’t possibly get worse or more concerning about the scandal over which Gen. Michael Flynn resigned his post as National Security Adviser just days after being confirmed, Rachel Maddow covered a story that the New York Times broke with even more startling details on this story that the public hasn’t heard yet.
The New York Times reported late Tuesday night that, according to four current and former U.S. officials, phone calls between other staffers working for Donald Trump made telephone contact with Russian government officials before Trump was sworn in on Jan. 20, 2017, making that contact a possible violation of the Logan Act. Unlike the calls leaked in which Gen. Flynn illegally discussed Obama’s sanctions with Russia before as a private citizen without authorization to do so, however, these calls weren’t made after Trump was elected.
They were made during the presidential campaigns.
‘American law enforcement and intelligence agencies intercepted the communications around the same time that they were discovering evidence that Russia was trying to disrupt the presidential election by hacking into the Democratic National Committee, three of the officials said. The intelligence agencies then sought to learn whether the Trump campaign was colluding with the Russians on the hacking or other efforts to influence the election.
‘The officials interviewed in recent weeks said that, so far, they had seen no evidence of such cooperation.’
That does not mean, however, that President Trump did nothing to set off the alarms of those in the know at the time. In fact, he said and did many things during the campaign to raise the suspicions of those aware of the Russian hacking during the campaign.
‘The intercepts alarmed American intelligence and law enforcement agencies, in part because of the amount of contact that was occurring while Mr. Trump was speaking glowingly about the Russian president, Vladimir V. Putin. At one point last summer, Mr. Trump said at a campaign event that he hoped Russian intelligence services had stolen Hillary Clinton’s emails and would make them public.’
For Rachel Maddow’s segment, see video below:
Featured image screengrab via YouTube