Presidents are always upset at leaks because they embarrass the administration, so it isn’t unusual that #President Trump is calling for an investigation into them, but he is not correct that all leaks are illegal. If no classified information was disclosed then the leak wasn’t illegal, although if it came from within the White House, then it is grounds for dismissal. President Obama was actually one of the most aggressive Presidents when it came to prosecuting leakers.
Trump news conference
President Trump held an actual #press conference today and called on reporters other than the very conservative outlets he had called on every other day.
The press conference today lasted 1 hour and 15 minutes, and was a really remarkable event, one for the history books, taking questions even from some obviously hostile reporters, but with no mention of how he was helping middle America.
President Trump claimed that the Muslim ban rollout went smoothly, then blamed all the problems on Judges. But after a few minutes of praising Alexander Acosta, President Trump's new nominee for Secretary of Labo, many of the early statements Trump made focused on the recent election, and his complaints about the media.
Back to the election
President Trump turned to Hillary, his great win, and other election topics, almost as if he didn’t know the election was over. He also talked about reporter Jim Acosta (no relation to the nominee) and, in fact, spent more time on Hillary and reporter Acosta than his nominee. The President again bragged about his election win, saying that he “had the biggest electoral college win since Reagan.” When a reporter pointed out that Obama, G.H.W.
Bush, and Clinton all had bigger or much bigger wins than he did, President Trump said, “Well, that’s what I heard.”
Trump also kept up the claim that recently ousted security advisor Flynn did nothing wrong except lie to Vice President Pence. At another time he said, “The leaks are real but the news is fake.” He pointed to a Rasmussen Tracking Poll that just reported that 55% of the likely voters approve of President Trump’s performance so far. Two days ago the Los Angeles Times reported that President Trump’s popularity has continued to fall. According Gallup’s surveys, Trump’s approval rating -- 45-45 at the time of the inauguration -- has seen a 10-point drop in the time since, lower than any president in the first months of his tenure since FDR.
President Trump also spent time on the claim that Hillary Clinton "gave up 20 percent of America's uranium supply to Russia.” He also pointed out uranium is used to make nuclear weapons.
The uranium sold to Russia was low-grade uranium fuel which can only be used in reactors. It also wasn’t sold by Clinton, it was sold by Uranium One, a Toronto, Canada company. The 20% of total uranium wasn’t correct either, it was only 20% of production from a couple of mines. The world’s largest uranium producer is Kazakstan.
Attacks on minorities and media
Another reporter prefaced a question about attacks on Synagogs (which have surged recently) by saying that he knew Trump and his close aides weren’t anti-semitic, but what was he going to do to help stop the anti-semitic attacks by others. Trump turned the question around and said he was insulted by being called anti-semitic. When another reporter pressed him on this he said many or most of those anti-semitic signs were put up not by his supporters, but by his opponents trying to make him look bad.
At one point President Trump went into his usual rant about how terribly dishonest the press is and how much worse the political media is than the financial reporters used to be, but a few minutes later he said, “There’s no one I have more respect for [than reporters].”
Talking about terrible leaks, he said that on the Mexico and Australian calls the leaks reported "what was actually said." So much for #fake news.