President Donald Trump’s unsubstantiated claims that predecessor Barack Obama wiretapped his Trump Tower offices have left the former commander-in-chief outraged and the two men’s relationship more strained than ever.
The Wall Street Journal reports Obama is as furious over Trump’s public allegations as he is dumbfounded by them, which came in the form of a series of tweets fired off early Saturday morning.
“Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my ‘wires tapped’ in Trump Tower just before the victory,” Trump posted. “Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!”
Since then, a spokesperson for the former president has insisted the administration long prided itself on a rule of never interfering with any Justice Department led probe and “neither President Obama nor any White House official ever ordered surveillance on any U.S. citizen.”
According to the Journal, up until then, Obama had made it a point of trying to remain cordial with his successor, particularly during the transition period between the two administrations.
Meanwhile, Trump supporters have floated the idea that Obama sees himself as “at war” with his successor and officials who remain loyal to him have been behind the widespread leaks emanating from the White House.
White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer has since hinted that the president bases his claims on “reports concerning potentially politically motivated investigations.”
Reports are the two men have not spoken since Trump phoned Obama to thank him for a letter he left for him at the White House. The called went unanswered, as Obama was on vacation at the time. Just prior to that Obama insisted he had no intention of publicly responding to every outlandish tweet posted by Trump.
Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and ongoing FBI Director James Comey have both joined the growing list of those publicly claiming to have no knowledge that would corroborate any of Trump’s assertions.
Meanwhile, the New York Times has reported the president has come up a bit sketchy in the details department since launching his claims, particularly about how such an elaborate scheme could be carried out. Nonetheless, several of his senior staffers have since publicly called for a congressional investigation of the alleged incident.
Trump also recently hit Obama with a claim many are also refuting, where he charged the former president released “122 vicious prisoners from Guantanamo Bay” who has since returned to the battlefield to fight against American interest.
A report from the National Director of Intelligence has since revealed 113 of the men in question were, in fact, released by President George W. Bush.
The first six weeks of his administration have come to be a particularly rough time for Trump and his administration, who are now trying to ward off a growing scandal where several members of his campaign have been found to have met with Kremlin leaders during the height of his campaign.
Those staffers include newly minted Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who served as a surrogate for Trump during his run against Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. Sessions was recently forced to walk back claims he made to lawmakers during his Senate confirmation hearings where he claimed to have not had any contact with Russian leaders over the time in question.
Former national security adviser Michael Flynn has already been forced to resign as part of the growing probe, and there are Democratic lawmakers now calling for Sessions to do the same. The former Alabama senator has already indicated he may be willing to recuse himself from any subsequent investigation stemming from any related probe.
Trump and White House officials have continued to deny any wrongdoing.
[Featured Image by Jack Gruber/Getty Images]