Former President Barack Obama says that if Republicans were actually concerned about the security risks posed by Hillary Clinton’s emails, “they’d be up in arms” over President Donald Trump’s iPhone use, The Hill reports.
“In the last election is was Hillary’s emails. ‘This is terrible.’ ‘Hillary’s emails!’ We were hearing Hillary’s emails everywhere,” Obama said, before continuing.
“They didn’t care about emails. And you know how you know? Because if they did, they’d be up in arms right now as the Chinese are listening to the president’s iPhone that he leaves in his golf cart. It turns out, I guess it wasn’t that important.”
Former President Barack Obama’s comments were in reference to a recently published New York Times report which alleges that Russian and Chinese spies are spying on President Trump through his iPhone.
Known for his prolific Twitter use, Trump may be vulnerable to foreign espionage and White House staffers have repeatedly warned the president about the dangers of using unsecured phones, according to the NYT.
Russian and Chinese espionage appears to be more than merely a threat, since numerous U.S. intelligence officials told the New York Times that they had learned that Russia and China were eavesdropping on Trump’s calls.
The Chinese reportedly want learn how the president thinks and who he listens to, in order to prevent the trade war Trump has been escalating with them.
President Trump responded to the outlet’s story via Twitter, calling it “soooo wrong!”
However, as The Verge pointed out, President Trump sent the message calling the report “wrong” from his iPhone. The same outlet noted that the president may not be necessarily contradicting himself, since it is likely that Trump is using government-issued phones — he reportedly has three — at the very least while in the White House.
"They didn't care about [Hillary Clinton's] emails. And you know how you know? Because if they did, they'd be up in arms right now as the Chinese are listening to the president's iPhone that he leaves in his golf cart. It turns out, I guess it wasn't that important," Obama says. pic.twitter.com/RVH7rLAK6M
— CBS Evening News (@CBSEveningNews) October 26, 2018
The Hillary Clinton email scandal, which alleged that Clinton used her private email server rather than official State Department servers to conduct official business, caused widespread public outrage and is one of the reasons cited for her loss in the 2016 presidential election.
Members of the Republican Party — President Trump included — still frequently mention the former secretary of state’s reckless email use, according to MSNBC, so it comes as no surprise that former President Barack Obama made the comparison.
Once fierce political opponents, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton have come together once again to campaign for the Democratic Party ahead of the midterms.
The former president made the comparison between Hillary’s emails and Trump’s iPhone use while headlining a rally for Wisconsin state Superintendent Tony Evers, who is looking to unseat the Republican incumbent Scott Walker, and Tammy Baldwin, who is challenging Leah Vukmir.