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Obamagate trends as Trump targets ex-President over ‘Russian interference’ in US polls probe

For the past few days, Trump has been retweeting conspiracy theories regarding Obama's involvement in the probe into Russia's interference in the 2016 presidential elections.

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New Delhi: US President Donald Trump Sunday attacked his predecessor Barack Obama by tweeting “OBAMAGATE”, implying that the latter was linked to the much-criticised FBI investigation into former US national security advisor Michael Flynn and tried to “sabotage” the new incoming administration.

After Trump’s tweet, #ObamaGate has been trending on Twitter, with 2.8 million tweets as of 11 May.

The president was referring to a leaked conversation of Obama with members of the Obama Alumni Association, where he reportedly said the “rule of law is at risk” after the Justice Department dropped the criminal case against Flynn last week.

Flynn, Trump’s first security advisor and a former general, had initially pleaded guilty to the federal investigators about being in contact with the Russian ambassador to the US during the 2016 presidential polls in which President Donald Trump beat Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton amidst allegations of Russian involvement.

Flynn was fired by the Trump administration in 2017 for lying to Vice President Mike Pence about his conversations with the Russian ambassador “regarding sanctions levied by the Obama administration in retaliation for interference in the 2016 election”.

According to The Guardian, “The US intelligence community has long held that such efforts were meant to tip the election towards Trump and away from Hillary Clinton, the Democratic nominee.”

Many Republicans celebrated the step taken by the Justice Department against Flynn, including Vice President Pence who said he’d be happy to see Flynn “back in the government”.


Also read: Covid threat reaches White House even as Trump tries to convince Americans to go back to work


Trump believes Obama was involved

Trump has been retweeting several conspiracy theories regarding Obama’s alleged involvement in the investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential polls.

“The biggest political crime in American history, by far!” tweeted Trump, accompanying conservative talk show host Buck Sexton’s claim that Obama “used his last weeks in office to target incoming officials and sabotage the new administration”.

The probe into Russian involvement in the 2016 elections was called by Obama at the end of his presidency.

Flynn’s involvement in this case has since seen many twists and turns — on the edge of being sentenced for his crimes in 2018, he switched legal teams in 2019 and then retracted the guilty plea in 2020. Attorney General William Barr assigned a legal prosecutor to review the case in January, and now he stands free of any criminal baggage.

The decision to suspend the case against Flynn was a result of the review ordered by Barr. The FBI investigation against Flynn took place four days after the inauguration of the Trump administration but Barr and other department officials termed the investigation as lacking “a proper investigative basis”.

The motion further detailed — “A review of the facts and circumstances of this case, including newly discovered and disclosed information, indicates that Mr. Flynn’s statements were never ‘material’ to any FBI investigation.”

“There is no precedent that anybody can find for someone who has been charged with perjury just getting off scot-free,” Obama reportedly said in the leaked call.


Also read: Trump, Pompeo continue to blame Wuhan lab for virus but US agencies are less convinced


Obama calls Trump’s Covid response ‘chaotic disaster’

On Flynn’s investigation, Trump said, “He is a great gentleman. He was targeted by the Obama administration and he was targeted in order to try and take down a president and what they’ve done is a disgrace and I hope a big price is going to be paid. A big price should be paid.”

The leaked call also revealed the former president’s views on the Trump administration’s response to the coronavirus outbreak, calling it an “an absolute chaotic disaster”.

Obama, who has mostly remained silent on Trump and his way of governance, said in the call that he will only weigh in on his successor’s steps if he believed that “core values may be at stake”.

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5 COMMENTS

  1. Totally agree with all the comments previously posted, honest journalism and this news media business which pretends to be honest don’t go hand in hand, that’s why they are not fit to be called a news organization

  2. Unfortunately I only found one piece of information in this “article” worth noting, The rest is just slanted biased goobily nothingness which at best misleads the reader. “There is no precedent that anybody can find for someone who has been charged with perjury just getting off scot-free,” Obama reportedly said in the leaked call. That statement is false. It is Categorically false, in fact all one has to do is look at President Clinton who lied under oath regarding Monica Lewinsky. Many times people get off scot-free after committing perjury, So the real question is why would a newspaper not offer the truth along side a clearly false statement. Newspapers are supposed to be for news. The news was that President Obama clearly told a falsehood regarding perjury charges. Now perhaps President Obama mis-spoke which politicians do from time to time (they always have to think and respond on the fly about numerous complicated topics) So any legitimate news organization would try to get a follow up/clarity. If the Print attempted a follow up then they should state so. People need news, real news, facts not a bunch of B.S.

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