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|Martin Barillas||October 26th 2016|
Donald Trump said today that an investigation into the involvement of President Barack Obama is warranted, following the release of emails from the account of Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, John Podesta. The WikiLeaks hacking organization revealed that among the thousands of emails it stole from Podesta’s account that there is evidence that President Obama was aware of Clinton’s use of a private email server.
Speaking today in an interview with Reuters, Trump said that it is “a big thing." He said, "This means that he has to be investigated."
On a swing through Florida, Trump referred to denials that Obama was unaware of Clinton’s email scheme and told an audience at a rally in Sanford, "But newly public emails — WikiLeaks — prove otherwise." He said "now I understand" why Obama supported Clinton in the presidential election. "Because he didn't want to get caught up in the big lie," he said. "We have to investigate the investigation. We have to investigate."
Among the latest emails revealed by WikiLeaks was a communication that showed Clinton’s top aide, Cheryl Mills, responding to campaign press secretary Nick Merril, who forwarded a tweet that quoted Obama as saying that he learned about Clinton’s the private server "the same time everybody else" did. The email server was used to transmit classified information. "We need to clean this up," Mills wrote to Podesta. "He has emails from her — they do not say state.gov."
CBS White House correspondent Bill Plante once asked Obama when he learned that Secretary of State Clinton was using a non-government email system for official business, Obama replied, "The same time everybody else learned it through news reports."
Since then, the White House has sought to stamp out speculation. Press secretary Josh Earnest said, following the CBS interview, that the president "was referring specifically to the arrangement associated with Secretary Clinton's email."
"Yes, the president was aware of her email address," Earnest said. "He traded emails with her. That shouldn't be a surprise that the president of the United States is going to trade emails with the secretary of state. But the president was not aware of the fact that this was a personal email server and that this was the email address that she was using exclusively for all her business. The president was not aware of that until that had been more widely reported."
The Obama administration has claimed that WikiLeaks is tied to Russian, possibly Russian government, hackers. Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook said this past weekend that he believes that Trump was actually involved. Speaking in an interview with Fox News' Chris Wallace about the source of the leak, Mook said, "And we are trying to go through some of them as we can. But we don’t have time to go through them all. And again, this is a distraction put in place by the Russian government at the suggestion and encouragement of Donald Trump. That should be a chilling fact for every single American."