WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – President Donald Trump questioned the intensifying special counsel’s investigation of his campaign and administration while attacking his own national security adviser, the Federal Bureau of Investigation he controls, Hillary Clinton, former President Barack Obama, Democrats in Congress, CNN and others in a nine-hour span of tweets that included profanity and misspellings.
Posting from his Florida estate, he seemed most aggrieved that special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s team had unearthed 13 indictments against Russians on Friday – and alleged that they could have swayed the 2016 election to benefit Trump.
Trump has chafed at accusations he had any help for more than a year, resisting calls to decry Russia’s efforts to interfere and take more action against the adversary while firing and threatening to fire law enforcement officials investigating him and frequently ranting on Twitter.
‘‘I never said Russia did not meddle in the election, I said ‘it may be Russia, or China or another country or group, or it may be a 400 pound genius sitting in bed and playing with his computer.’ The Russian ‘hoax’ was that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia – it never did!’’ he posted around 7:30.
About 30 minutes later, he added: ‘‘If it was the GOAL of Russia to create discord, disruption and chaos within the U.S. then, with all of the Committee Hearings, Investigations and Party hatred, they have succeeded beyond their wildest dreams. They are laughing their asses off in Moscow. Get smart America!’’
Trump, ensconced at Mar-a-Lago, has so far stayed away from the golf course even though the weather has been sunny and almost 80 degrees – in what aides describe as showing respect for the 17 killed in a mass school shooting in Florida this week.
The president has instead spent much of his time watching television and tweeting, aides said. After a string of tweets Saturday afternoon, he dined with journalist Geraldo Rivera and the president’s two adult sons before returning to his quarters for more posts.
He seemed to wake up Sunday morning again fired up.
The tweet that bothered several people around him the most was his direct attack on the FBI Saturday evening.
Trump has pushed for changes at the DOJ and FBI, accusing leaders of being biased against him, and has grown angered that he cannot have more control at the Justice Department.
‘‘Very sad that the FBI missed all of the many signals sent out by the Florida school shooter. This is not acceptable. They are spending too much time trying to prove Russian collusion with the Trump campaign – there is no collusion. Get back to the basics and make us all proud!’’ he wrote.
Attacking the FBI for missing a tip on the shooter – a significant blunder for the bureau that it admitted Friday – while funerals are still ongoing for victims, and making the attack about himself, was a remarkable move. It seems unlikely that the special counsel’s investigation, a separate office that works independent of the main Justice Department, had anything to do with the missed tip.
Whether there was any collusion with Russia is still part of Mueller’s investigation. On Friday, Mueller described an elaborate internet system designed to interfere in the election, with workers creating ads, staging rallies, traveling to the United States and being told to support Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders over Hillary Clinton. That indictment said ‘‘unwitting’’ Americans were involved but did not accuse any Americans of a crime.
Trump has wavered publicly on whether Russia interfered to benefit him, even though all the intelligence agencies of the United States has conclusively said Russia did. After H.R. McMaster, his national security adviser, said Saturday that Russia was to blame, Trump mocked him publicly, calling attention to ethical issues of Clinton’s and conspiracy issues he has fanned. He has, at times, clashed with McMaster and finds McMaster to be too professorial, aides have said.
‘‘General McMaster forgot to say that the results of the 2016 election were not impacted or changed by the Russians and that the only Collusion was between Russia and Crooked H, the DNC and the Dems. Remember the Dirty Dossier, Uranium, Speeches, Emails and the Podesta Company!’’ Trump said.
Trump often refers to Clinton, who lost the electoral college to Trump while winning 3 million more popular votes, ‘‘Crooked H.’’ The ‘‘dirty dossier’’ is the extensive set of accusations, in a dossier written by British spy Christopher Steele, about Trump’s dealings in Russia. It makes salacious claims and was funded by Democrats, among others, and has become part of the special counsel’s investigation. ‘‘Uranium’’ seemed to refer to unsubstantiated accusations against Obama and Clinton unethically, or illegally, selling uranium to Russia – a flash point of the right.
Speeches and emails seem to refer to paid speeches by Clinton and the fact she worked off a private email server in her basement in Chappaqua, New York, as secretary of state. The Podesta Company is a now dissolved lobbying firm, led by Democrat powerhouse Tony Podesta, who is now under investigation.
He also revived a news story about Obama sending $1.7 billion to Iran in a separate tweet and said it should have been investigated. The payment was the settlement of a long-standing arbitration claim.
It was unclear what any of those had to do with Russian meddling the election.
He further attacked ‘‘Finally, Liddle’ Adam Schiff, the leakin’ monster of no control,’’ the Democrat he often sees on television talking about the House Intelligence Committee’s investigation. He noted that Schiff said Obama should have done more on Russian interference Saturday. ‘‘Thanks Adam,’’ he wrote.
In the end, the tweets seemed distilled to this, which he posted around 8 a.m.:
‘‘The Democrats, lead by their fearless leader, Crooked Hillary Clinton, lost the 2016 election. But wasn’t I a great candidate?’’
Source : The Boston Globe