President Trump’s apparent campaign to offend and alienate every one of America’s allies continued unabated this week with the erratic billionaire accusing the British government of wiretapping him, based on no evidence other than the imagination of a former TV judge turned Fox News contributor, and a truly bizarre meeting with Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel.
During their surreal joint press conference, Trump was asked about his baseless allegations of wiretapping against former President Obama. He first danced around the answer, before directing any further questions on the matter toward “a very talented lawyer on Fox”—you know, the aforementioned syndicated TV judge Andrew Napolitano, whose imaginary friend told him that Obama had British intelligence monitor Trump.
“Hours after our last show a couple of weeks ago, President Crazypants started tweeting about how Obama tapped his phone at Trump Tower—based on nothing. That’s the great thing about having tiny hands: It’s easier to pull stuff right out of your ass,” joked Bill Maher.
The political satirist kicked off his Real Time program Friday night with a sharp monologue attacking Trump’s wiretapping shenanigans—a political ruse that has wasted tons of legislative resources, monopolized the airwaves, and been deemed unfounded by politicians and intelligence experts on both sides of the political divide.
“Even though Obama himself has said this is bullshit—the wiretapping, and our former National Intelligence Director said that, the FBI director said that, the speaker of the House said that, the chairman of the House Senate Intelligence Committee, and the Senate from both sides of the aisle said this, Trump addressed all these doubters today,” explained Maher. “He said, ‘Well, I saw someone say it on Fox News.’ Really? That’s it? I saw someone say it on Fox News? What has to happen, Republican patriots, before you act? Does the president have to get naked, roll around on the White House lawn, start eating the grass and going vroom vroom, I’m a lawnmower!”
Maher then addressed Trump’s offhand remark to Merkel where, after being asked about his Obama wiretapping claim, he turned to her and said, “At least we have that in common.” Trump was referencing Edward Snowden’s reveal that the NSA under Obama may have been eavesdropping on Merkel’s mobile phone. Of course, it’s particularly crass for Trump to make light of wiretapping to Merkel, given how she grew up in East Germany during the Cold War.
“And Trump said this today in front of Angela Merkel. Did you see that? She had a look on her face like, ‘How I long for the days when I got creepy shoulder rubs from George W. Bush,’” joked Maher.
If the lame jokes and obfuscations weren’t enough, Trump also blew off Merkel’s request for a handshake. Yes, in front of a gaggle of photographers shouting “handshake” in the White House, Merkel is clearly heard asking Trump, “Do you want to have a handshake?” After all, Trump shook Japanese PM Shinzo Abe’s hand forever during their summit. But no, Trump, who appeared to register the ask by Merkel, then seemingly pretended to not hear her. Given Trump’s history of misogyny, the childish behavior wasn’t all that surprising.
“Oh, that was a great meeting with Angela Merkel,” said Maher. “He obviously hates her, and of course he’s so great at hiding this stuff. They were sitting there, and the people are shouting, ‘Don’t you want to shake hands?’ like every president has ever done in every photo [op]. No, no, fuck her, I’m not going to shake it. And then after the meeting, he tweeted, ‘Lousy meeting with German Chancellor Barney Rubble. Low energy, unattractive, didn’t even want to make me pop a Tic Tac.’”