John Oliver continued to open Last Week Tonight with an update on the continuing investigation of Donald Trump and Russia, aka “Stupid Watergate” –so named “because it has all the potential consequences of Watergate, but everyone involved is really stupid,” he explained.
Last week Devin Nunes, who Oliver called “the most ‘Devin’ Devin in the history of Devins,” made headlines with the seemingly headline-making claim the Trump transition team, and Trump’s personal communications, may have been caught up in “incidental surveillance.”
Initially sounded like it could back up Trump’s Twitter claim President Obama wiretapped him. But it quickly unraveled as Nunes, who heads the House Intelligence Committee that’s looking into Russian interference in the presidential election, conceded the surveillance to which he was referring was “routine,” appeared to be completely legal, took place after the election. And, it may not have targeted Trump or his transition team but foreign individuals discussing the transition, Oliver noted. And yet despite that, Trump claimed the evidence left him feeling “somewhat vindicated.”
Many many question surround Nunes, Oliver noted. Why, for instance, did he make such a big show of racing to the White House to share his information with the president, especially in light of the revelation from the New York Times that White House officials were the source of the information.
“Okay so, to recap: Devin Nunes took what appears to be an unnecessary trip to tell what appears to be unimportant news to what may have been the source of the news itself,” Oliver said.
“So what Nunes brought to light has turned out to be a bunch of smoke and mirrors as convoluted as it is pointless. Truly, it is now the Now You See Me of revelations,” he snarked.
But Stupid Watergate got even stupider, Oliver noted:. “The surveillance Nunes was studying concerned the Trump transition team, of which one member was – yeah, you guessed it – Devin f*cking Nunes.”
“Which seems like a pretty clear conflict of interest.”
It became important for Republicans to make clear just how independent Nunes is from the White House. “But, they couldn’t even do that properly,” Oliver scolded, cutting to a clip of Rep. Ted Yoho (R-Fla) discussing the subject in a TV interview, and saying “keep in mind who he works for; he answers to the president.”
Challenged on that, with the question, “Does he? Or does [Nunes] work for the constituents of his district,” Yoho shot back, “Well, you do both.”
“No! You absolutely do not!” Oliver began to foam over.
“You do one of them, and explicitly not the other! That is literally the point of Congress!” Oliver exclaimed.
“And that’s why this story is Stupid Watergate: It could very well take down the government. But nobody involved understands why – or how to cover it up – or what the government fucking is! Or, possibly, how to breathe without getting regular reminders.”