During a joint press conference with the president of Romania, Donald Trump accidentally admitted that he asked for Comey’s loyalty as he denied making the request of the former FBI Director.
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) June 9, 2017
ABC’s Jon Karl got to ask Trump about Comey’s testimony that Trump asked for his loyalty.
The President’s answer was a denial, and then a backdoor admission.
Trump said, “I didn’t say that. I will tell you I didn’t say that, and there would be nothing wrong if I did say that according to everybody that I’ve read today, but I did not say that.”
Look at Trump’s statement carefully. He starts off with the strong, clear denial, “I didn’t say that” but then he adds a phrase that negates his denial. The President added, “and there would be nothing wrong if I did say that.” Realizing that he just admitted that he did say that by offering up a defense, Trump doubles back to his original strong statement, “but I did not say that.”
A person who really didn’t say that doesn’t have to add, and if I did say that, there would be nothing wrong. Trump felt the need to try to cover himself with an admission wrapped in a denial.
Trump said it, and unintentionally confirmed a key part of Comey’s testimony as true.