On Monday night, President Donald Trump posted on his Twitter account that the “Trump Russia story is a hoax” after lobbing several distracting conspiracy theories about Hillary Clinton’s involvement with Russia during her time as Secretary of State under President Barack Obama.
It’s clear why Trump brought back up five allegations used during his campaign, and called his connections that-won’t-go-away with Russia “hoax.” It’s because investigations over whether campaign officials had contact with Russia during his campaign won’t dissolve.
Trump, who, it should be noted, is usually an early-morning Twitter user, posted the tweets around 9:30 p.m. EST on Monday, repeating a false rumor that Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State approved a plan to move 20 percent of U.S. uranium to a Russian company.
“Why isn’t the House Intelligence Committee looking into the Bill & Hillary deal that allowed big Uranium to go to Russia, Russian speech money to Bill, the Hillary Russian “reset,” praise of Russia by Hillary, or Podesta Russian Company. Trump Russia story is a hoax. #MAGA!”
So, in order, they are:
1. Bill & Hillary deal that allowed big Uranium to go to Russia
2. Russian speech money to Bill
3. The Hillary Russian “reset”
4. Praise of Russia by Hillary
5. Podesta Russian Company
Trump brought up a conspiracy theory related to Bill Clinton — one he brought up during the campaign — that rests completely on conjecture: that he was paid speech fees in exchange for his wife’s approval of the uranium purchase. There’s no smoking gun, but there never is with conspiracy theories. “In several instances, State Department actions benefited those that paid Mr. Clinton,” reported The Wall Street Journal in December 2015. “The Journal found no evidence that speaking fees were paid to the former president in exchange for any action by Mrs. Clinton, now the frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination.”
Regarding the “reset” that Trump mentions, he’s alluding to the fact that the Obama administration’s attempt to restart positive relations with Vladimir Putin’s Russia was happening around the same time as U.S. uranium deposits were being sold to Russia’s energy agency Rosatom, which started to buy shares in Toronto-based Uranium One. Rosatom bought 17 percent first before acquiring all of it in 2013, which included 20 percent of uranium based in the United States, reported The Washington Post. Of course there’s no evidence that Clinton, in her role as head of the State Department, was involved in a decision so far down the chain.
There’s also Trump’s allegations of “praise of Russia by Hillary” and the “Podesta Russian company,” neither of which merit any explanation here, frankly.
Lost in the flurry of baseless allegations from a president who takes his talking points from conspiracy theories floated on Fox News is the investigation by the FBI of Trump’s involvement with Russia, of course.
On March 20, FBI Director James Comey testified before the House Intelligence Committee that the agency was investigating “coordination” between Russia and the Trump campaign.
Earlier Monday, Democrats in the House called on the House Intelligence Committee chair, Republican Devin Nunes of California, to recuse himself from the investigation after it came out he made a secret trip White House and had seen intelligence reports. Nunes was also a member of Trump’s White House transition team. He is close to the president.
Later Monday, Trump tweeted that Obamacare “will fold” without offering any evidence why. The president does not link out.Photos via Getty Images / Pool