Texas Senator Ted Cruz is once again carrying water for the man who suggested his wife was ugly and intimated that his father might have been involved in the assassination of President John F Kennedy.
On Wednesday as America ticked past the milestone for 100,000 dead due to coronavirus and Minneapolis was set ablaze during anti-police brutality protests, Mr Trump was tweeting about the conspiracy theory he hopes will help him win reelection in November.
Recount editor John Heilemann replied to the tweet asking for clarification.
“Could you explain again exactly what it is? We’ll wait,” he wrote.
Mr Trump’s unwillingness – or inability – to actually construct and present an intelligible explanation for what “Obamagate” is actually asserting has been exemplified at some of the press conferences he’s given since he first began tweeting about the mystery scandal.
After claiming it was the “biggest political crime in American history” a reporter asked him to explain. Mr Trump’s cryptic reply was “you know what the crime is.”
Rather than letting Mr Trump – who not only defeated him but also repeatedly insulted him and his family – to fend for himself, Mr Cruz decided to step in to defend the president, responding to Mr Heilemann by asking “I thought that was a reporter’s job?”
This began a chain of responses lashing out at the Texas senator.
“Sorry, I’m still busy reporting out Trump’s accusation that your father was involved in the killing of JFK,” Mr Heilemann replied.
Gary Whitta, a screenwriter and author, called Mr Cruz “a joke.”
“You think it’s a reporter’s job to chase down obvious (and deliberately vague) bats*** conspiracy theories propagated by a vicious and desperate lunatic? You really are a joke,” he said.
David Weissman, a former Trump supporter turned critic, replied that a reporter’s job was to “ask questions to get the answers.”
“I thought you were smarter than this?” he asked.
Despite the troubling history Mr Cruz has with Mr Trump, he has been consistently defending “Obamagate” as a legitimate scandal.
On Monday, Mr Cruz was having another Twitter spat with Gabriel Sherman, a reporter from Vanity Fair, during which he elucidated on the alleged scandal, which revolves around Mr Trump’s former national security adviser, Michael Flynn.
“Serious questions for Trumpers: What is the scandal of unmasking an American official caught on an intercept discussing US sanctions policy with [the] Ambassador of a hostile foreign country that had just launched a massive cyber attack on our election?” Mr Sherman asked.
Mr Cruz replied with an actual description of the charges at the heart of the alleged scandal.
“Uhh, [Michael Flynn] was the incoming National Security Advisor & a 3-star general. He’s SUPPOSED to discuss sanctions policy. That’s his job. The unmasking was part of outgoing admin launching a massive sting operation to try to entrap him,” Mr Cruz wrote. “Maybe this helps: imagine Bush doing [the] same to Obama.”
Essentially, Mr Cruz is alleging that the Obama administration set Mr Flynn up to be caught in a perjury trap.
Flynn pleaded guilty twice to lying to the FBI. However, the Attorney General, William Barr, has sought to drop the case against him after the president tweeted that Flynn had been treated “very unfairly”. The judge is reviewing the case before making a decision.
Flynn also lied to the vice president, Mike Pence, about his contacts with the then-Russian ambassador to the US, leading intelligence chiefs to fear he had made himself a potential target for blackmail by the Kremlin.