The headlines in the conservative media were gleeful this morning. The story was that former National Security Adviser Susan Rice “unmasked” the names of Trump officials who were caught up in surveillance of foreign targets. And that this somehow proves that Trump’s claims of Obama wiretapping him were true.
Sign Up For Our Newsletter!
As the Washington Post reports, “Ordinarily, when a U.S. person shows up in such surveillance — say, talking to a Russian ambassador whose communications are being monitored — that person’s identity is blacked out in reports on the surveillance.” The Post also reports that Rice was within the law if she was in fact, the person in the administration who did so.
Except she denies doing anything improper.
“I leaked nothing to nobody,” she told MSNBC on Tuesday afternoon.
“If I saw an intelligence report that looked potentially significant … I can make that request,” Rice added of unveiling names of American citizens in intelligence reports. “That’s necessary for me to do my job.”
ABC News reports that a source in the NSA says that Rice, during the course of her official duties the former national security advisor, may have unmasked officials connected to the Trump transition team and campaign, but insisted that she would have never done so improperly.
“I’m not denying that she routinely requested the unmasking of individuals,” the source close to Rice said, adding that any instance of unmasking would have been necessary to understand the value of the intelligence being presented to her.
As per the Trump and conservative media playbook, when heat is on the Trump administration—i.e., the revelation that Jeff Sessions met with a Russian ambassador and lied to Congress about it; House Intelligence Committee Chair Rep. Devin Nunes, R-California, being asked to recuse himself from investigating the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia—something else miraculously “breaks” against the Obama administration. In the Sessions case, Trump tweets the claim that Obama wire tapped his phones; now, that Susan Rice doing her job somehow vindicates this ridiculous claim.
In both instances, there’s a “blame the black person” theme running through here.
It should also be noted that the first person who broke this “story” was, according to NBC News, Mike Cernovich, who is also known for promoting a false story that a Washington, D.C. pizza parlor was a nest of pedophiles connected to Hillary Clinton. Which obviously was a bald-faced lie.
We are no closer to the truth than we were weeks ago. But Trumpians can act like this somehow vindicates his ridiculous Tweets of Obama “wiretapping” Trump Tower and demonize a black person at the same time.
Win-win for them. Loss for democracy.
55 Photos To Make You Miss The Obamas
1. Barack gives daughter Malia a kissSource:Getty 1 of 55
2. Michelle and Barack tell the kids a storySource:Getty 2 of 55
3. Michelle and Barack KissSource:Getty 3 of 55
4. Michelle and BarackSource:Getty 4 of 55
5. First Family PortraitSource:Getty 5 of 55
6. Two TermsSource:Getty 6 of 55
7. Family PortraitSource:Instagram 7 of 55
8. Michelle and Barack host a State DinnerSource:Getty 8 of 55
9. Barack Obama and Michelle ObamaSource:Getty 9 of 55
10. Fun In The SunSource:Instagram 10 of 55
11. The Obamas on Air Force OneSource:Getty 11 of 55
12. Hawaiian HolidaysSource:Instagram 12 of 55
13. The First Family in LondonSource:Getty 13 of 55
14. A Young Malia & SashaSource:Instagram 14 of 55
15. First Lady Michelle Obama with daughters Malia Obama and Sasha ObamaSource:Getty 15 of 55
16. Daddy's GirlSource:Instagram 16 of 55
17. Barack & SashaSource:Instagram 17 of 55
18. Sasha and Malia Obama at the 2016 State DinnerSource:Getty 18 of 55
19. Turkey PardoningSource:Getty 19 of 55
20. Sunday ChurchSource:Getty 20 of 55
21. Gobble, GobbleSource:Getty 21 of 55
22. Obama & SashaSource:Instagram 22 of 55
23. Malia Obama, the First DaughterSource:Getty 23 of 55
24. Barack Obama and his daughter Malia ObamaSource:Getty 24 of 55
25. Team ObamaSource:Instagram 25 of 55
26. A Family AffairSource:Getty 26 of 55
27. Flashback To The Old DaysSource:Pete Souza 27 of 55
28. Happy Birthday!Source:Getty 28 of 55
29. Candidly AwesomeSource:Pete Souza 29 of 55
30. The Obamas Family PortraitSource:Instagram 30 of 55
31. Historic First FamilySource:Getty 31 of 55
32. Ice Cream TreatSource:Getty 32 of 55
33. TV TimeSource:Pete Souza 33 of 55
34. Playing In The Oval OfficeSource:Instagram 34 of 55
35. Always Giving BackSource:Getty 35 of 55
36. A Christmas StorySource:Getty 36 of 55
37. Hawaii Trip!Source:Getty 37 of 55
38. Obama Loves Team USA & His WifeSource:Getty 38 of 55
39. Malia and Sasha ObamaSource:Getty 39 of 55
40. Michelle Plays on a BikeSource:Getty 40 of 55
41. Obama Loves Team USA, His Wife & MaliaSource:Getty 41 of 55
42. Reading TimeSource:Pete Souza 42 of 55
43. Family SupportSource:Getty 43 of 55
44. The Sister SelfieSource:Pete Souza 44 of 55
45. Supporting MomSource:Pete Souza 45 of 55
46. Giving Back On MLK DaySource:Getty 46 of 55
47. Obamas Give Back To The CommunitySource:Getty 47 of 55
48. Always Supporting Small BusinessesSource:Getty 48 of 55
49. Obama SwaggerSource:Getty 49 of 55
50. Laughs & TurkeysSource:Getty 50 of 55
51. Growing Up In The White HouseSource:Instagram 51 of 55
52. Christmas With The ObamasSource:Getty 52 of 55
53. Malia & ObamaSource:Instagram 53 of 55
54. 50th Anniversary Of March On SelmaSource:Pete Souza 54 of 55
55. Christmas Tree LightingSource:Getty 55 of 55