The Washington Post
Image courtesy of ABC News
It’s a very big day for President Trump: the day he meets and sits down with Russian President Vladimir Putin for the first time. So naturally he got it started with a strange tweet.
When it comes to strange tweets, Trump is, well, no stranger. But this one is inexplicable in so many ways that I thought it worth a quick recap.
1. It fails the smell test spectacularly: Okay, even if we grant that perhaps foreign leaders are talking about Russian hacking of the 2016 election or even second-guessing how it was dealt with, this would be an extremely specific and insider-y thing to zero in on. Podesta, who was Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, hasn’t really been in the news for months, nor has the Democratic National Committee’s decision not to turn over its servers. Perhaps the leaders might be talking about President Barack Obama not doing more about Russia before the election after Trump broached the topic Thursday, but this is weirdly specific fare for leaders at the Group of 20 summit.
2. The FBI requested the servers: There is no indication that the CIA, which deals with foreign intelligence and surveillance, was involved.
3. Podesta wouldn’t have had control over this decision: He was not a DNC official, and even if you argue that Clinton’s campaign could have exerted control over such a thing, she wasn’t the Democratic nominee when the situation came to a head.
Either Trump knows something we don’t and he’s disclosing new information here, or he’s confused.