President Donald Trump on Saturday leveled an extraordinary accusation against his predecessor, suggesting Barack Obama ordered surveillance on his residence at New York’s Trump Tower at the height of the contested 2016 general election, a claim that an aide to the former president flatly rejected.
In a series of pre-dawn posts on Twitter, the current president said that he just discovered that he was “wire tapped” just before the November elections, but nothing had been discovered. Trump invoked the specters of former President Richard Nixon and Wisconsin Sen. Joseph McCarthy.
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
In a statement, Kevin Lewis, a spokesperson for Obama, rejected Trump’s assertion. “A cardinal rule of the Obama Administration was that no White House official ever interfered with any independent investigation led by the Department of Justice,” he said.
“As part of that practice, neither President Obama nor any White House official ever ordered surveillance on any U.S. citizen. Any suggestion otherwise is simply false,” he added.
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