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President Donald Trump accused NBC host Lester Holt of “fudging” his interview with the president last year where he said the “Russia thing” was on his mind when he fired former FBI Director James Comey.
The president did not offer any proof of his claims. The interview aired in May 2017, 15 months ago, and this appears to be the first time the president has claimed it has been doctored.
“What’s going on at @CNN is happening, to different degrees, at other networks – with @NBCNews being the worst. The good news is that Andy Lack(y) is about to be fired(?) for incompetence, and much worse. When Lester Holt got caught fudging my tape on Russia, they were hurt badly!” the president tweeted.
What’s going on at @CNN is happening, to different degrees, at other networks - with @NBCNews being the worst. The good news is that Andy Lack(y) is about to be fired(?) for incompetence, and much worse. When Lester Holt got caught fudging my tape on Russia, they were hurt badly!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 30, 2018
During the interview with Holt, Trump said the Russia investigation was something he was considering when he decided to fire Comey—a decision that sparked the appointment of Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
Comey was leading the FBI’s investigation into Russia’s alleged meddling in the 2016 election. During the interview, the president said Comey was a “showboat” and said he was going to fire him regardless of the recommendation from Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.
“When I decided to just do it, I said to myself, I said, ‘You know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story, it’s an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have won,'” the president said in the interview.
The “Russia thing” quote has been floated by some people as possible evidence of obstruction of justice by the president.
Earlier this year Trump insisted in a tweet that Comey was “not fired because of the phony Russia investigation” amid numerous interviews and television appearances by the FBI director ahead of the release of his book.
The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment by the Daily Dot.
The interview is available to watch on YouTube here.
Andrew Wyrich is a politics staff writer for the Daily Dot, covering the intersection of politics and the internet. Andrew has written for USA Today, NorthJersey.com, and other newspapers and websites. His work has been recognized by the Society of the Silurians, Investigative Reporters & Editors (IRE), and the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).