An unlikely source came to the defense of President Donald Trump regarding his wiretap claims. Former Congressman Dennis Kucinich, widely known as a critic of the surveillance state, said the same thing happened to him during Barack Obama’s first term in office.
In an op-ed at Fox News, Kucinich admitted he’s “no fan of Trump’s” but that the President has “got a point about wiretapping.”
Why? Because it happened to him in 2011.
“I was wiretapped in 2011 after taking a phone call in my congressional office from a foreign leader,” Kucinich claimed.
The congressman said he was approached by reporters at the Washington Times who wanted to verify audio they had received of a sensitive telephone conversation between himself and a high-ranking Libyan official.
“I believe the tape was made by an American intelligence agency and then leaked to the Times for political reasons,” Kucinich said. “If so, this episode represented a gross violation of the separation of powers.”
Kucinich later recalled the incident to Bill O’Reilly.
In an interview with Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly on Monday, Kucinich recalled how a phone call from a foreign leader to his congressional office was tapped in 2011—a fact he learned of after leaving office.
“I had a resolution in the House to try to stop the war and [Saif el-Islam Qaddafi, son of Libya’s former President Moammar Qaddafi and a high-ranking official in the country’s government] called me to talk about it,” Kucinich said.
“I cleared the discussion with House attorneys and a member of Congress is not supposed to be listened to by the executive branch,” he added. “The Director of National Intelligence under President Obama was tracking my resolution and I didn’t find out until two years after I had left Congress.”
Kucinich had learned of the secret recording in 2015 when reporters from the Washington Times approached him about it, wanting confirmation that it was indeed him on the tape.
President Trump kicked off weeks of controversy when he claimed that the Obama administration had conducted surveillance at his headquarters in Trump Tower prior to the election.
How low has President Obama gone to tapp my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergate. Bad (or sick) guy!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 4, 2017
He was summarily dismissed by the media as being a crazy conspiracy theorist.
Kucinich says not so fast.
“I have never gone public with this story, but when I saw the derision with which President Trump’s claims were greeted—and notwithstanding our political differences—I felt I should share my experience,” Kucinich wrote.
“When the president raised the question of wiretapping on his phones in Trump Tower, he was challenged to prove that such a thing could happen,” he added. “It happened to me.”
Comment: Do you think Obama and/or his intelligence agencies had Trump wiretapped prior to the election? Share your thoughts below.