WaPo’s Ignatius: Trump’s Wiretapping Claim Has Morphed Into Legitimate Discussion About Surveillance

Sunday on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” associate editor and columnist for The Washington Post David Ignatius said President Donald Trump’s tweets accusing former President Obama’s administration of wiretapping Trump Tower prior to the election “has morphed into an argument about privacy, about proper masking techniques.”

Ignatius said, “So under existing surveillance orders, the United States is listening to all kinds of diplomats, intelligence officials around the world under various authorities. And when that collection picks up incidentally the names of Americans, Joe Russia happens to be calling Joe America, Joe America’s name is masked so that person’s privacy is protected.”

“In certain circumstances when it’s necessary to understand who the conversation is between, the name is unmasked and then it’s a legal investigation beyond that,” he continued. “There are even more reasons. What’s happened this month is that what initially seemed a preposterous argument by Donald Trump that he had been wiretapped by President Obama illegally has morphed into an argument about privacy, about proper masking techniques, a very technical legal issue, and it’s now accepted I think as part of the mainstream set of issues that are going to be debated by the two intelligence committees. From Trump’s standpoint that’s a success.”

(h/t NTK Network)

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