The Michael Flynn scandal is, to say the very least, confusing to the American public.
The ex-National Security adviser reportedly lied to Vice President Mike Pence about his communications with Russia for a phone call that took place in December. Yet, The Washington Post reported that then-acting Attorney General Sally Yates had warned the White House of Flynn's conversations on sanctions with Russia, and his lack of disclosure to Pence back in January.
President Donald Trump, of course, is blaming the media and intelligence leaks for Flynn's desecrated political career. What's really going on, here?
We may not know for a long time, but one thing we're sure of is that Flynn's abrupt exit was not so much a resignation, but a termination by Trump.
"The issue, pure and simple, came down to a matter of trust, and the president concluded he no longer had the trust of his national security adviser," White House press secretary Sean Spicer said on Tuesday.
And yet, on Thursday Trump said, "Michael Flynn ... is a wonderful man. I think he's been treated very, very unfairly by the media. As I call it, the fake media in many cases."
So was it due to a breech of trust, as Spicer stated? Maybe. Or was it just because Flynn made Trump's administration look shady and incompetent (because, well, they are)? A bigger maybe.
No matter the reason, we'd all bode well with an end to Trump's ridiculous media conspiracy theory claims.
CNN anchor Jake Tapper skewers Trump's insistence on tangoing with the truth, spreading falsehoods, and shifting the blame for the latest misconduct to come from Capitol Hill.
"The media, of course, did not fire Gen. Flynn. President Trump did," Tapper said. "Now what the media did do was reveal to the nation that Gen. Flynn had lied to the country and to the Trump team, including Vice President Pence, when he claimed he never discussed Obama's sanctions on Russia with the Russian ambassador."
"President Trump knew this at least as early as Jan. 26, but he did not act on this until the media revealed the truth to you," Tapper continues. "And, as it turns out, to Vice President Pence, who learned about it through the media, sources say."
Quite simply, the stories from The Washington Post, The New York Times, and CNN aren't "fake" — to borrow Trump's favorite word. They are fact-based truths, "sourced by government officials."
Conspiracy theories are different, Tapper said, giving clear examples. And, yep, they're spouted by none other than Mr. President.
Tapper goes on to illustrate the utter and blatant hypocrisy of the president, since he didn't seem to have a problem with leaks when they were about Hillary Clinton's emails.
"It's worth pointing out: It's not a moral position if you only hold it when it applies to you," Tapper says.
Case in point.
Banner/thumbnail credit: YouTube screengrab, Team Coco