Where's Trump getting the idea that Lester Holt "fudged" their interview last year on the Comey firing?

I’m asking earnestly. This reeks of something he saw on “Fox & Friends” or on a righty website somewhere and decided to run with. What’s the genesis of it? Or did he just wind himself up this morning by going off on a rant about CNN and decided in the heat of the moment, “F*** it, let me throw something in about NBC doctoring our interview”?



It’d be a big deal if true, as the Holt interview was where he admitted that he had Russiagate on his mind when he dropped the axe on Comey. That admission may be part of Mueller’s obstruction case in proving intent. If that particular quote was “fudged” or deceptively edited somehow, it might affect the entire investigation.

But then if there were reason to believe the Holt interview had been “fudged,” we would have heard about it sooner than a year later, I’m thinking.

You can watch all 13 minutes of it archived on YouTube, including the part where Trump praises recently appointed deputy AG Rod Rosenstein as an impressive public servant esteemed by both sides. If he really did concoct his allegation against Holt out of whole cloth, as a deliberate attempt to gaslight his way out of the admissions he made at the time, it’d be the second example in less than 24 hours of him pushing a bald-faced lie about a matter of public interest on his Twitter account. This tweet from last night is compelling on its face…


…but it’s just not true. Google did promote Trump’s SOTU this year on its homepage and BuzzFeed has the screencaps to prove it. It didn’t promote Trump’s address to Congress last year for the same reason it didn’t promote Obama’s address to Congress in 2009, the company said: Neither one of those were technically State of the Union addresses, delivered as they were by presidents who’d just taken office. Whether the White House sloppily forgot to check if this year’s SOTU had been promoted by Google before handing Trump the clip above or whether they deliberately declined to check, knowing that most people who watch Trump’s video will never discover the truth, is unknown. Both possibilities seem plausible.


My guess was that he got the idea about Lester Holt fudging their interview from a Fox News segment somewhere, but even Fox isn’t backing up the claim. When Howard Kurtz was asked this afternoon on air if there’s any reason to believe POTUS’s tweet, he was crystal clear. Exit quotation: “If President Obama had said, ‘Hey, Fox News, you should get rid of Roger Ailes, because I think your coverage of me is unfair,’ there would have been an explosion on the right.”

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David Strom 5:21 PM on September 22, 2023