The White House's sloppy approach to addressing the Trump administration's relationship with Russia is making John Oliver long for the time when the federal government was more skillful at coverups.
"[T]his all amounts to what I'm gonna call 'Stupid Watergate,'" Oliver said on the latest episode of Last Week Tonight. "A potential scandal with all the intrigue of Watergate, but everyone involved is really bad at everything. And the relevant question isn't so much, 'what did the president know and when did he know it,' as it is, 'is the president physically capable of knowing things at all?'"
The prime example of 'Stupid Watergate' last week was Attorney General Jeff Sessions. During Senate confirmation hearings in January, Senator Al Franken (D-Minnesota) asked then Senator Sessions what he would do if he found out that members of the Trump campaign communicated with Russian officials. In his response, Sessions said that he had no knowledge of those meetings and that he did not personally have contact with any Russian officials during the campaign.
That last part turned out to be untrue: Sessions met twice with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak, who is also one of Russia's top spies and spy recruiters according to U.S. Intelligence. So Sessions misled the Senate with his testimony. What's even worse, as Oliver noted, is that Sessions didn't have to bring up his relationship with Russia at all.
"Perhaps the weirder thing is that that was an unforced error," Oliver said. "He wasn't even asked if he had met with the Russians. He just implicated himself out of the blue, which should've been immediately suspicious. If you ask someone how their weekend was, and they say, 'Well, I definitely wasn't masturbating into the Slurpee machine at the 7-Eleven,' you check the fucking security cameras at the 7-Eleven and you don't act surprised."
And he's not the only one fumbling the political hot potato that Russia has become for the Trump administration. Check out Oliver's highlights of other Trump spokespeople struggling to cover up their involvement with Russia and other political fiascoes.