Bill and Hillary Clinton complained of a “vast right-wing conspiracy” during the 42nd presidency. Donald Trump increasingly portrays the 45th as plagued by the biggest “witch hunt” in American history.
Trump had been uncharacteristically silent on Twitter since the New York Times reported Tuesday evening that then-FBI Director James Comey had crafted a memo detailing a Feb. 14 conversation during which the president allegedly asked him to drop a criminal probe of the national security adviser he had fired the day before, Michael Flynn.
Trump responded to the appointment of a special counsel for the FBI’s Russia probe on Thursday, saying “with all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special councel appointed.”
With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special councel appointed!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2017
The president misspelled counsel in the first tweet. He followed with a second tweet: “This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!”
This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2017
Less than 24 hours before the “witch hunt” tweet, Trump complained about the cloud hanging over his presidency while delivering a commencement address at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy.
He told the graduates to “look at the way I’ve been treated lately, especially by the media.” Trump contended “no politician in history has been treated worse or more unfairly.”
The tweets further ratcheted up Trump's criticism of the FBI’s Russia probe, and struck a much harsher tone than what appeared to be a carefully worded statement issued the night before by the White House bearing his name.
“As I have stated many times, a thorough investigation will confirm what we already know — there was no collusion between my campaign and any foreign entity. I look forward to this matter concluding quickly,” Trump said in the statement. “In the meantime, I will never stop fighting for the people and the issues that matter most to the future of our country.”
As he prepares to host the Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos at the White House on Thursday before departing on his first overseas trip as president — a five-country, nine-day swing — his presidency is plagued by scandals. And the president appears to be feeling sorry for himself.
— Catalina Camia contributed to this report.