After Air Force One landed in West Virginia this afternoon before his rally for Republican Senate candidate Patrick Morrisey, President Trump finally faced the media and responded to the guilty verdict for his former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, who was just convicted on eight counts of felony financial crimes.
President Trump was defiant but was obviously uneasy, repeating himself several times in a rambling statement which saw him trying desperately to both distance himself from his former campaign manager and to discredit the Mueller probe:
… Very sad about that, doesn’t involve me but I still feel, uh, it’s a sad thing that happened, nothing to do with Russian collusion, this started as Russian collusion and had nothing to do…it’s a witch hunt and it’s a disgrace, nothing to do what they started out, [sic] looking for Russians in my campaign, there were none, I feel very badly for Paul Manafort…He worked for Bob Dole, for Ronald Reagan, he worked for many people, and this is how it ends up and it was not the original mission, believe me, it was something very much different, was not Russian collusion, we continue the witch hunt.
In reality, Paul Manafort is still facing more charges relating to his failure to declare himself as a foreign agent due to his lobbying work for the Russian puppet leader of Ukraine, Victor Yanukovych, which are being handled by a Washington D.C. federal court.
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While this first wave of guilty verdicts may not be directly related to the 2016 Donald J. Trump for President campaign, it’s clear that everyone in Trump’s inner circle is a career criminal who is guilty of numerous crimes on top of those related to Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and the Trump campaign’s alleged collusion.
Mr. President, we think you doth protest too much.
Watch it here:
— CBS News (@CBSNews) August 21, 2018