Tags: Trump Administration | hayden | trump | administration | facts

Hayden: Trump, Administration Arguing Law Because They Don't 'Own the Facts'

Image: Hayden: Trump, Administration Arguing Law Because They Don't 'Own the Facts'
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By    |   Tuesday, 05 December 2017 08:50 AM

The Trump administration is now trying to argue law instead of facts, which is what happens "when you don't own the facts," former CIA and NSA Director Michael Hayden said Tuesday.

"I think the most telling point is, here we are this morning on national TV, and this has become so all-consuming that you're asking the former head of the Central Intelligence Agency for a legal opinion," Hayden told CNN "New Day" anchor Chris Cuomo, in response to a question about whether President Donald Trump could legally be charged with obstruction of justice.

"What this tells me is my lawyers at NSA and CIA used to remind me that when you own the facts, you argue the facts," said Hayden. "When you don't own the facts, you argue the law. And what we've seen since Mike Flynn's guilty plea last Friday is now the administration is trying to argue the law rather than argue the facts. To me, that's very revealing as to what's happening behind the screen there."

Trump's personal attorney, John Dowd, claimed in an interview with Axios that a president can't be guilty of obstruction of justice, "because he is the chief law enforcement officer under (the Constitution's Article II) and has every right to express his view of any case."

Hayden said that he agrees, "in the English meaning" of the word, if Trump had known former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn had lied to the FBI when he spoke with then-FBI Director James Comey about him, then that could be considered obstruction of justice.

However, the matter will be decided at the political level, he added.

However, he said that he would doubt seriously that the Republican-controlled House will draw up articles of impeachment against Trump, which is "quite different" than what happened in the 1970s, when then-President Richard Nixon was impeached by a Republican House.

Meanwhile, Trump and his administration is trying to discredit institutions such as the FBI, and Hayden said if he was still heading one of Washington's institution, he'd advise his agents to "be perfect."

"Zero defects," he said. "If we're not, the administration is going to exploit our weakness, our misstep to discredit us wholly."

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The Trump administration is now trying to argue law instead of facts, which is what happens "when you don't own the facts," former CIA and NSA Director Michael Hayden said Tuesday.
hayden, trump, administration, facts
415
2017-50-05
Tuesday, 05 December 2017 08:50 AM
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