Anderson Cooper On Wiretapping: "Tonight We Know The President Of The United States Has No Facts"

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Anderson Cooper delivers a monologue on President Trump's claim that he was 'wiretapped' and surveilled during the 2016 U.S. presidential election. From Thursday's broadcast of Anderson Cooper 360:

ANDERSON COOPER, CNN: Tonight, we know the president of the United States has no facts. No facts to back up his startling allegation that the former president of the United States, President Obama, wiretapped him in Trump Tower during the campaign.

"Keeping Them Honest", we know this tonight because bipartisan members of the Senate Intelligence Committee say they've seen no evidence that President Obama ordered Donald Trump's phones tapped during the campaign. We know this because House Speaker Paul Ryan also says he's seen no evidence.

Now, remember, the president asked Congress to investigate and the House and Senate Intelligence Committees have been doing that for the last dozen days. We know the president has no facts to back up his early morning Saturday tweet storm because in today's White House briefing, Press Secretary Sean Spicer read a long list of media reports that he seemed to believe back up the president's claims, media reports. Sean Hannity, Judge Napolitano, Heat Street, "The New York Times," the very paper the president of the United States has consistently referred to as failing and fake.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Sean Hannity went on on Fox to say -- Judge Andrew Napolitano made the following statement -- on November 11th, 2016, days after election, Heat Street reported -- January 19th, "The New York Times" reported --

(END VIDEO CLIP)


COOPER: Well, we know the president has no facts because he himself was on FOX News last night and finally explained where he got the alleged information that led him to tweet the substantiated allegations against the former president. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I’ve been reading about things. I read in -- I think it was January 20th, "The New York Times" article, where they were talking about wiretapping. There was an article. I think they used that exact term.

I read other things. I watched your friend Bret Baier the day previous where he was talking about certain very complex sets of things happening and wiretapping. I said, "Wait a minute, there's a lot of wiretapping being talked about." I’ve been seeing a lot of things.

(END VIDEO CLIP)


COOPER: The president on FOX last night. He's been seeing a lot of thing, he says. He read a report in "The New York Times." He heard Bret Baier say something. A lot of wiretapping being talked about, he says there. Now we know.

The thing is the report in "The New York Times" the president seems to be talking about, it does not say anything about President Obama ordering a wiretap. We've actually interviewed "The New York Times" reporter who wrote the article and we're going to do it again tonight. In a minute, you can hear him for yourself.

As for Bret Baier, whose work I certainly respect, based on Sean Spicer's comments today, we believe the president is referring to Bret's show on March 3rd, the night before the president tweeted. That show does not cite any evidence of wiretapping, instead, it appears to refer to other unspecified reports, none of which, again, say anything about former President Obama wiretapping President Trump.

Let’s remember, before sending those tweets attacking the former president, President Trump could have picked up a phone. He could have called the FBI, the CIA, his director of national intelligence, could have just asked for the information. He didn't.

There was something else the president said in that FOX interview that’s similar to something he said before. In the world of television, it's what we call a tease. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Wiretap covers a lot of different things. I think you're going to find some very interesting items coming to the forefront over the next two weeks.

(END VIDEO CLIP)


COOPER: That's the tease. Basically, it's stay tuned, because there's something very interesting coming up.

Now, the president has done this before, most notably as a citizen when he used to talk about President Obama’s citizenship.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Right now, I have some real doubts. I have people that actually have been studying it and they cannot believe what they're finding.

INTERVIEWER: You have people now down there searching -- I mean, in Hawaii?

TRUMP: Absolutely. And they cannot believe what they're finding.

(END VIDEO CLIP)


COOPER: By the way, the payoff for that tease, that never came. In fact, there has never been any evidence at all that then citizen Trump actually had people down in Hawaii searching for information. The time when he claims he did, we actually did have people down in Hawaii searching for information, interviewing all the people somebody would interview for information and none of those people we interviewed ever reported being approached by anyone working for then-citizen Donald Trump.

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