Trump Defends Trashing McCain by Complaining He Gave Steele Dossier to the FBI for ‘Evil Purpose’

Trump Defends Trashing McCain by Complaining He Gave Steele Dossier to the FBI for ‘Evil Purpose’

President Trump tried to defend his continued trashing of a dead man to Maria Bartiromo on Fox Business News Friday morning.

Bartiromo mentioned Trump’s rant against John McCain during a speech in Ohio on Wednesday and asked the president a direct question: “John McCain is dead. Why are you doing this?”

Trump’s response tied his trashing McCain to one of his overriding obsessions, which is the Steele dossier that has become part of the Russia investigation. He told Bartiromo, “About three days ago it came out that his main person gave to the FBI the fake news dossier, it was a fake, it was a fraud, it was paid for by Hillary Clinton and the Democrats. They gave it to John McCain who gave it to the FBI for very evil purposes.”

The news that a McCain associate traveled to London to get a copy of the dossier and the senator then gave it to the FBI is much more than three days old. McCain himself wrote about it in a memoir published before he died seven months ago.

What Trump is talking about is a deposition by that associate, David Kramer, which was unsealed this week as part of a lawsuit filed by a Russian businessman against BuzzFeed for publishing the dossier. The deposition gives a few new details about Kramer’s efforts, but the fact McCain eventually gave it to the FBI has long been known.

Trump went on to complain that he only brings up McCain because the news media asks him about it. This is not true. Trump kicked off the latest round of McCain-bashing with some tweets last weekend, which naturally led the media to wonder why he was doing so. And certainly there was no reason for him to spend part of a speech on Wednesday complaining that McCain hadn’t thanked him for throwing his funeral. McCain couldn’t have anyway, consdering he was dead at the time.

Bartiromo then asked Trump if he feels he has an obligation to bring the country together. Trump responded that “I think I am in a certain way bringing it to together. I can tell you that a big portion of this nation is united like it’s never been united before.”

That is for sure, though based on his approval ratings, that unity is not for the reasons he thinks.

Watch the clip above, via Fox Business.

Gary Legum

Gary Legum

Gary Legum has written about politics and culture for Independent Journal Review, Salon, The Daily Beast, Wonkette, AlterNet and McSweeney's, among others. He currently lives in his native state of Virginia.