Despite bragging minutes before about his authority to revoke security clearances from former officials on a whim, President Donald Trump on Tuesday denied reports that he had ever considered stripping former President Barack Obama of his intelligence briefing privileges.
Fake News, of which there is soooo much (this time the very tired New Yorker) falsely reported that I was going to take the extraordinary step of denying Intelligence Briefings to President Obama. Never discussed or thought of!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 21, 2018
Trump’s tweet comes on the heels of a Monday report in the New Yorker detailing what led former CIA Director John Brennan to publicly speak out against Trump, a move that, according to the President himself, ultimately fueled the decision to revoke Brennan’s clearance.
According to The New Yorker, around the same time that Trump tweeted the baseless claim that Obama had “tapped” his phones during the election, Trump’s closest allies were urging the President to take away the security clearances of former Obama Administration officials, including Obama himself.
Former National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster reportedly put out that fire before it could spread: Trump was told about the necessity of keeping former presidents informed, given their frequent contact with other world leaders, and he ultimately decided against it, according to the New Yorker.