Trump Tapes – Yes or No?
I believe there are no tapes – and my reasons follow:
Below is a timeline from the date that Jim Comey was fired to the date when the New York Times (NYT) published Comey’s now famous memos.
May 9: Comey is fired.
May 11: The New York Times publishes a story about a January dinner Trump and Comey had, based on interviews with Comey’s associates. Comey had told the associates about the dinner.
May 12: Trump tweets, “James Comey better hope that there are no ‘tapes’ of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!”
May 15: Comey wakes up realizing the relevance of a potential tape, according to his testimony.
May 16: The New York Times publishes a story about the existence of Comey’s memos. The New York Times said it had not seen the memos, but included information from one of them about an Oval Office meeting in February, as explained and quoted by a Comey associates.
Only President Trump and James Comey know exactly what happened at meetings between the two, and only Trump knows whether there are tapes of their conversations. In any event, the latter fact puts Trump at an advantage. Now, let’s assume Trump did make tapes of the private conversations between him and Comey: If Trump believed that the tapes would vindicate him and make Comey look bad, I believe he would have already shared them with the world. If Trump believed that the tapes would be damaging to him, he would never have dared to mention them.
So, why did the President tweet about tapes that didn’t exist on May 12? After the NYT published a story about Trump and Comey’s meeting in January which was based on interviews with Comey associates, I believe Trump felt that a veiled threat about the possibility of tape recordings would intimidate Comey and make him cautious about revealing details about their meetings. Furthermore, I believe that President trump’s attacks on Comey’s testimony which was made under oath before the Senate Intelligence Committee is strong evidence that trump knows there are no tapes to dispute his version of what happened.
That’s my story and I’m sticking to it for now – so what say ye?