Donald Trump infamously put trust in Putin-pawn and hi-tech terrorist Julian Assange over his own country’s intelligence agencies this morning. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, who has had a lukewarm relationship with Trump dating back to the election, refuses to go along, calling Assange a “sycophant for Russia.”
Appearing on Wednesday’s Hugh Hewitt Show, Ryan said of the noted provocateur that “He leaks, he steals data and compromises national security.” Though Ryan would not address Trump’s tweet directly, he appeared to be allowing Trump some lee-way, saying, “the last thing I’m going to do is start commenting on every little tweet or Facebook post. That is just not what I do with the president-elect or when he’s president.”
Per MSNBC’s Kyle Griffin:
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) January 4, 2017
Unless it’s President Obama, of course. Or, you can be certain, Hillary Clinton.
Typical of Ryan’s passive-aggressive response to Trump, he said, “I think he has not received his Russia briefing yet.” No mention of the briefings Trump willfully skipped in order to focus on his uninformed Twitter and Saturday Night Live addictions.
“I believe that is scheduled for Friday, so hopefully he’ll get to up to speed on what has been happening and what Russia has or has not done. And he’ll be better informed on that.”
Right. A man who has resisted every attempt to inform him for the past year is suddenly going to be swayed by intelligence from the agencies he has spent weeks denigrating.
Trump, of course, has claimed the briefing was moved to Friday, casting doubt on the whole affair by suggesting it was so intelligence sources could massage their facts and “build a case,” as usual outright lying since according to a senior intelligence official the briefing was always supposed to take place on Friday.
This is just one more sign of the dysfunction headed our way, a demoralizing miasma of lies and obfuscation from people who care more about personal power than they do about the country they were elected to serve.
Paul Ryan famously took issue with Donald Trump during the campaign without withdrawing his endorsement. This is just more of the same, with Ryan disagreeing with Trump while making excuses for him.