Squawking Heads: Everything You "Missed" in the Sunday Morning Political Talk Shows

March 6, 2017
In The News

Once again, we’re reminded that Donald Trump is nothing more than an unhinged old person who gets worked up about every conservative conspiracy theory he sees on social media; my phone autocorrected the name of Deputy White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders to “Sarah Huckster Sanders” while I was texting a friend and I left it that way because truth in art; and Marco Rubio continues to bravely swallow his own spine just to prove it’s humanly possible! This week on Squawking Heads I saw what happens when one mixes eating a deli sandwich at 4 AM with a hefty dose of existential dread. Spoiler Alert: it didn’t go well! Let’s get into it!

When I was a teenager my parents took away my TV privileges for three months because I wasn’t doing my math homework. Donald Trump has consistently proven he cannot use technology without shaking the very foundations of our nation. Every parent in America would agree is past time to take away this man’s screen privileges!

Because he needs constant unqualified adoration or he sets himself on fire, Trump decided to pitch a goddamn fit on Saturday morning. After receiving an insane amount of praise for doing the bare minimum in his address to Congress—he didn’t have private security physically drag Democrats out of the chamber for disagreeing with him so now he’s presidential—he decided to flip the fuck out because Jeff Sessions recused himself. Apparently feeling that tweeting a couple grainy photos of Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi existing near Russian leaders and claiming they’re the ones with the Russia problem wasn’t effective enough, the President of the United States started throwing around Scandal-level conspiracy theories.

Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my "wires tapped" in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 6:35 AM - 4 Mar 2017

How low has President Obama gone to tapp my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergate. Bad (or sick) guy!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 7:02 AM - 4 Mar 2017

I've seen more rational thinking in the comment section of YouTube videos. Even those posts where there are commas after every three words like the person is hyperventilating while shouting have more apparent high-level reasoning.

Representative Ted Lieu (D-CA) made unusual use of Twitter to share a fair and valid point.

Mr. President: If there was a wiretap at Trump Tower, that means a fed judge found probable cause of crime which means you are in deep shit. https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/837996746236182529 …

— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) 10:14 AM - 4 Mar 2017

HE’S NOT WRONG. But just as I was getting out some fresh red string to connect everything on my Conspiracy Theory Vision Board….

...James Clapper, former Director of National Intelligence under President Obama, put that shit to bed. James Clapper is like Olivia Pope got trapped in your grandpa’s body. He’s just here to let you know this is handled.

On Meet the Press, Chuck Todd asked Clapper about whether a court order existed to surveil Donald Trump during the election. Obviously not expecting a straight answer, Todd asked, “At this point, you can’t confirm or deny whether that exists?” Clapper shockingly just answered the question.

“I can deny it,” he said.

It took every ounce of professionalism inside Chuck Todd’s body to keep from looking into the camera, Ferris Bueller-style.

In the words of Aubrey Plaza on FX’s critically acclaimed new show Legion, “That bitch’s secrets have secrets.” Yet somehow he was able to give the most straightforward answer of the morning. That is a man who doesn’t need to prove anything anyone. The stuff he knows would render the average American a quivering, sweaty mess of anxiety, incapable of leaving their beds. He doesn’t need to dick around. No, there was no wiretap, next question.

Todd, shellshocked by how successful this journalistic endeavor had been, pushed further, asking if any evidence exists of “improper contacts between the Trump campaign and Russian officials.” Clapper responded with the most intense name drop I’ve ever witness, and I once met a guy who told me several times how rude Lady Gaga is in person.

“We did not include any evidence in our report, and I say, ‘our,’ that’s N.S.A., F.B.I. and C.I.A., with my office, the Director of National Intelligence, that had anything, that had any reflection of collusion between members of the Trump campaign and the Russians.”

Clapper equivocates slightly by admitting that “this could have unfolded or become available in the time since I left the government.” But come on, he basically adds, it hasn’t.

I know this man is a career intelligence official. Most of his professional life has been spent knowing more than everyone else in the room and then lying about it. But honest to God, this interview made me feel safer than I’ve felt in weeks. James Clapper thinks the Senate Intelligence Committee is doing a good job investigating Russia’s interference in the elections? Good enough for me. James Clapper says there is no evidence the Trump campaign directly colluded with Russia? Awesome, I will dismantle my Zodiac-style evidence board post-haste. James Clapper tells me I can totally pull off this bodycon dress? Great, I will absolutely only wear this dress for the rest of my life.

Marco Rubio made time from his busy schedule of not interacting with his constituents to appear on CNN’s State of the Union and NBC’s Meet the Press. At this point, Rubio is basically running around screaming at anyone in earshot “I’m not going to be a part of a witch hunt. But I’m also not going to be a part of a cover-up.” All you have to do is look in his eyes to realize poor Marco doesn’t even see himself as the hero of his own story anymore. Please, try to get me to participate in a cover-up, Marco begs. Give me a chance, Marco pleads, to prove myself. Marco is the Draco Malfoy of this whole situation, he talks a tough game but you can see the sheen of sweat on his face and you know he’s going to hide his ass in the Slytherin dormitory when things actually get bad.

“Now we have this unsubstantiated claim made by the president, which shows in a certain way that the president doesn’t understand how you obtain a wiretap.” -Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) on Trump’s bonkers Saturday morning Tweet storm.

Between the Washington Post’s Chris Cilizza writing “Where there’s smoke and smoke and smoke and smoke and smoke, most reasonable people will assume there is fire” and Chuck Todd’s mixed aphorism of “There’s a lot of smoke but there hasn’t been that smoking gun yet,” I feel safe saying this one is good and dead.

Also, Representative Pelosi, please stop saying “Deflector in Chief.” It is not nearly as clever as you think it is.

-Martha Radditz basically yelled at Sarah Huckabee Sanders and then incredulously laughed in her face when Sanders refused to actually talk about Trump’s tweets.

-Senator Todd Cotton (R-AK) repeatedly said “President Obama” instead of “President Trump” while on Fox News Sunday. I miss him too, Todd.

-Every single member of the Senate Intelligence Committee respects each other and just wants to get to the bottom of this Russia stuff. It’s almost like they’re adults who understand the importance of their jobs or something.

North Korea. 110% North Korea. New York Times reporter David Sanger stopped by Face the Nation to talk about the Time’s terrifying piece about how North Korea is prrrretttty close to being able to shoot nuclear missiles at the U.S. I’m going to be honest, when I read this article I stopped in the middle for about thirty minutes because I inadvertently started thinking up a very detailed plan for how I would get out of New York if North Korea bombed another U.S. city. The key is to travel by foot, keeping off the highways, because we all know those are going to be completely gridlocked. I’m good and goddamn well not going to get trapped in New York like Vivica A. Fox in Independence Day.