In a troubling admission, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told NBC News that he doesn’t know if Russia bugged the Oval Office when Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak met with Donald Trump.
Andrea Mitchell asked Tillerson, if he thought “Russians were bugging the Oval Office,” to which he responded, “I would have no way to know that.”
MITCHELL: Mr. Secretary, Vladimir Putin is offering Congress a transcript of that Lavrov Oval Office meeting. Do you think the Russians were bugging the Oval Office?
TILLERSON: I would have no way to know that.
MITCHELL: What do you think of his offer?
[Tillerson waves and leaves the room.]
American media was barred from the Oval Office during the meeting, in which it has now emerged that Trump disclosed secret intelligence provided by Israel to the Russians, without Israel’s authorization.
But a Russian state media crew was allowed access to the room, and Russian president Vladimir Putin recently bragged that he could provide a transcript of the meeting between his officials and Trump.
The Trump administration has kept Tillerson out of the loop on most of its foreign policy initiatives, and this response is just the latest evidence that U.S. national security isn’t being taken seriously by anyone on the team.