Donald Trump tweeted that his telephones were tapped while Barack Obama was President.

In order to tap Trump’s lines, a warrant is required.  It could be issued by either a criminal or a FISA court.  In either case, before a judge issues a wire tap warrant he must find probable cause that either (1) a crime was committed or (2) national security is threatened. 

Trump demands that a full investigation be undertaken immediately.  He’s right.  Not only he, but the American public, need to know what led a court to believe that a wiretap of Trump’s telephone was necessary.  Was it to further a criminal investigation? Or was it to protect our national security? Does it involve Trump’s tax returns, his international business relationships or his involvement with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s government? Besides Sessions, Kurschner and Flynn, who else in Trump Towers has been talking to the Russians?

Sign Up for E-News

Of course, the agencies President Obama would have to approach to get a wiretap strenuously deny that any such order was given. (FBI Director James Comey comes close to calling Trump’s statements a lie.) However, we’re getting used to a Whitehouse loose with the truth.  In fact, we have learned that the Trump Administration takes the official position, contrary to that of the Bush and Obama administrations, that Federal ethics rules don’t apply to it.

It’s beginning to look more and more like an independent investigation, something like the 9/11 commission, is needed.  We need to determine the extent to which a foreign government interfered with the 2016 presidential election.  This and other questions call for a wide reaching independent inquiry like Trump demands.  However, he may not like its results.

Michael G. Busche