White House Aides' Actual Defense of Trump's Russia Leak: He's Not Smart Enough to Cause Harm

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White House officials are scrambling to deal with the fallout from the allegations that President Trump shared highly classified intelligence with top Russian officials.


On Tuesday, the New York Times published an in-depth overview of just how much of a mess the West Wing got itself into. The piece features the usual anecdotes of Trump screaming at his senior advisers and so forth, while reviving longstanding rumors of an impending exit by Press Secretary Sean Spicer. But the last paragraph contains an especially brutal assessment of the Trump presidency from three separate White House officials (emphasis mine):

In private, three administration officials conceded that they could not publicly articulate their most compelling — and honest — defense of the president: that Mr. Trump, a hasty and indifferent reader of printed briefing materials, simply did not possess the interest or knowledge of the granular details of intelligence gathering to leak specific sources and methods of intelligence gathering that would do harm to United States allies.

Put another way: “There’s no way the president could have leaked anything really bad to the Russians, because he’s just too stupid.

And that’s coming from his own guys!

Senior writer. When in doubt he'll have the soup.