BBC's Katty Kay: It's "a sign of how low the bar has fallen when we have to plead ignorance as the best possible excuse for the president"
Kay: Trump "knew he needed to be alone with the FBI director" James Comey to demand loyalty from him
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From the June 8 edition of MSNBC's Morning Joe:
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JOE SCARBOROUGH (HOST): Katty Kay, though, so many people trying to defend President Trump got on the air yesterday, basically saying he's ignorant. He's just a dumb guy when it comes to the ways of Washington. But this is a guy that was sued all the time. This is a guy that understood about FBI investigations, certainly from associates, people surrounding, surrounding the industries that he was in. I find it very, very hard to believe, very implausible that Donald Trump didn't understand the consequences of asking the FBI director to drop an active, possibly criminal investigation.
KATTY KAY: Yes. It's kind of a sign of how low the bar has fallen when we have to plead ignorance as the best possible excuse for the president in this situation. But I'm not sure -- I agree with you, Joe. This isn't ignorance. And I look at this statement, and I look at the deliberation with which Donald Trump made sure he got alone with Jim Comey. Both at the dinner, suggesting he might invite the family, but then not inviting the family -- no one else was there at that dinner -- and then in the meeting on the 14th of February, getting rid of [Attorney General Jeff] Sessions and then getting rid of Jared Kushner as well. This was a deliberate, concerted, knowing effort that the president made, to make sure that he was alone with Jim Comey and could get across those two messages, one of loyalty and then of trying to let the [former national security adviser Michael] Flynn investigation go. It doesn't seem like ignorance to me. He knew what he was doing. He knew he needed to be alone with the FBI director to make both of those points. He didn't want other people around. He knew what he was doing.