WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump claimed that NBC News anchor Lester Holt got caught “fudging my tape on Russia,” an apparent reference to an interview he gave in May 2017, in which he said that his decision to fire FBI Director James Comey was linked to the ongoing investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election.
The president offered no evidence to back up the claim. He also claimed that the head of NBC’s news division, Andy Lack, was about the be fired “for incompetence, and much worse.”
“What’s going on at @CNN is happening, to different degrees, at other networks – with @NBCNews being the worst. The good news is that Andy Lack(y) is about to be fired(?) for incompetence, and much worse. When Lester Holt got caught fudging my tape on Russia, they were hurt badly!”
What’s going on at @CNN is happening, to different degrees, at other networks – with @NBCNews being the worst. The good news is that Andy Lack(y) is about to be fired(?) for incompetence, and much worse. When Lester Holt got caught fudging my tape on Russia, they were hurt badly!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 30, 2018
Trump’s tweet was one of a number aimed at the news media over the past 24 hours, including a number directed at the departure of Don McGahn, the White House counsel.
NBC News posted the extended version of the interview at the time, and it is available on YouTube.
Trump told Holt in the May 11, 2017, sit-down that when he decided to fire Comey, “I said, ‘You know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made up story, it’s an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have won.'”
A spokesman for NBC News said they had no comment.
“Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd posted a tweet shortly after Trump’s claim.
“I miss the days when people muttered nutty conspiracy theories to themselves while meandering down a sidewalk,” he wrote. “Now they share it on Twitter w/millions of followers and for some reason some folks amplify it. Treat these tweets the way you’d treat the sidewalk mumbler, look away.”