Like father, like son
Dona;d Trump, Jr.
In what The Washington Post referred to as the “Political Super Bowl,” former FBI director James Comey testified in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday. Comey’s testimony centered around President Trump’s attempts to persuade him into ending the investigation of former national security advisor Michael Flynn and Russian interference in the 2016 election.
While Comey answered the committee’s questions, the world waited for President Trump to exercise his itchy Twitter finger and comment on the proceedings, but he was uncharacteristically silent. So Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr, took it upon himself to defend his father in real time.
Donald Trump Jr. saw nothing wrong with his father asking Comey to end the FBI’s investigation of Flynn. “I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go,” Trump said to Comey according to a memo presented to the committee by the former FBI director. During his testimony, Comey said he interpreted the President’s statement as a “direction” while Donald Trump Jr. saw it as nothing more than “hope.” Trump Jr. clearly missed the other part of the sentence where his father gave a clear direction to “see your way clear to letting this go.”
1/3 Flynn stuff is BS in context 2 guys talking about a guy they both know well. I hear "I hope nothing happens but you have to do your job"— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) June 8, 2017\n
2/3 very far from any kind of coercion or influence and certainly not obstruction!— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) June 8, 2017\n
3/3 Knowing my father for 39 years when he "orders or tells" you to do something there is no ambiguity, you will know exactly what he means— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) June 8, 2017\n
Hoping and telling are two very different things, you would think that a guy like Comey would know that. #givemeabreak— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) June 8, 2017\n
During his testimony, Comey admitted he was “stunned by the conversation” and that if he was a “stronger guy” he would have stood up to the President’s inappropriate request. To which Trump Jr. responded:
So if he was a "Stronger guy" he might have actually followed procedure & the law? You were the director of the FBI, who are you kidding?— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) June 8, 2017\n
In his tweet, Trump Jr.’s suggests that Comey should have “followed procedure” and “the law” and stood up to the president at the moment of his request. This reads like an unintentional admission that his father’s request was inappropriate and potentially unlawful. But Trump Jr.’s failure to adequately defend his father shouldn’t be criticized too harshly. Defending President Trump’s actions is a job that most people would never accept in the first place.