In his latest appearance on Fox & Friends, President Donald Trump boldly gave himself an "A+" for his time thus far in office, while accusing former FBI Director James Comey of being a "leaker and a liar" and again denying allegations that his campaign team had worked with Russian officials to rig the results of the 2016 presidential elections.
As recapped by Fox News, Trump called into Fox & Friends on Thursday morning, and spoke at length for 30 minutes about a variety of hot-button topics. A report from the New York Daily News also noted that the interview took place on First Lady Melania Trump's 48th birthday, with Trump starting off by saying that he was too busy to buy presents for his wife, thus his decision to get her a "beautiful" card and flowers instead.
After calling out Democratic lawmakers, including Montana Senator Jon Tester, for trying to "destroy" White House doctor Ronny Jackson, who had just withdrawn his nomination for Department of Veteran Affairs, the president turned his attention to Comey, dismissing the controversial memos he shared with Columbia University law professor Daniel Richman as "phony." The president stressed that he "did a great thing for the American people" when he relieved the former FBI Director of his duties.
"Look, Comey is a leaker and he's a liar. He's been leaking for years," Trump told Fox & Friends.
"He leaked classified information to get a special counsel and leaked the memos which are classified – the memos were about me and he didn't write those memos accurately. He wrote a lot of phony stuff. He is guilty of crimes."Later on in the interview, Trump said that the Justice Department should focus instead on Comey's alleged "phony memos," instead of the continued accusations of collusion with Russian officials. Talking about his stance on Russia, Trump emphasized that he's been "tougher" on the country than any other president before him.
"Nobody's been tougher to Russia than I am... You can ask President [Vladimir] Putin about that."
As noted by Vulture, Trump's interview also included comments about his recent celebrity endorsements from musicians Shania Twain and Kanye West. Trump criticized Twain, calling her "terrific," but opining that the country singer made a mistake when she apologized for her comments about wanting to vote for him had she been given the chance to do so. As for West, the president called the rap superstar a "smart" man who recognizes how he's "[done] a much better job than the Democrats did" in reducing unemployment rates for African-Americans.
Toward the end of Trump's Fox & Friends interview, host Steve Doocy asked the president to rate his tenure in office, considering that he had given himself an "A for effort and a C for messaging" right after his first month in the White House. Trump gave himself an "A+," justifying his self-evaluation by mentioning the "phony cloud" of accusations from Special Counsel Robert Mueller and his team, and how he's been able to deal with the ongoing probe.
"Nobody has done what I've been able to do. And I did it despite the fact that I have a phony cloud over my head that doesn't exist," Trump concluded.