Conservative news outlets have been pretty much obsessed with the Obama administration’s 2010 approval of the Uranium One deal and have repeatedly criticized the mainstream media for not covering the story. President Donald Trump picked up the baton (yet again) on Sunday and mentioned the supposed controversy as part of his morning tweetstorm in which he tried to shift focus away from the coming Robert Mueller indictments toward Hillary Clinton. But MSNBC’s Joy Reid showed Sunday morning just how easily the whole story falls apart once you start poking at it with a few facts in hand.
Reid had Jen Kerns from the Washington Examiner on as a guest and proceeded to demonstrate just how nonsensical the whole story is when you start looking at it away from the right-wing news prism.
When Kerns starts to explain why she thinks the “Uranium One deal is problematic,” Reid immediately cuts her off. “I want to ask you a couple fact-based questions,” she said. Then she went on:
Reid: Who got the money when the Canadian company was sold to the Russian company? The Uranium One? Who received the money?
Kerns: I presume the company.
Reid: Yes. Okay, second question. Who approved the sale?
Kerns: Yes. The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States.
Reid: How many people sit on the committee?
Kerns: Nine members.
Reid: How many have to approve a deal like this?
Kerns: All nine of them.
Reid: All nine.
Reid: How many approved this deal?
Kerns: All nine of them.
Reid then went on to ask whether Clinton actually sat “personally on that deal.” Kerns recognized she didn’t but said “she pushed for it.” Reid then questioned those supposed Clinton ties to the deal:
Reid: Who is the person who donated to Hillary Clinton who is related to and had an investment in uranium one? What is that person's name? Do you remember their name?
Kerns: They are board members of Uranium One donated up to $143 million I think to the Clinton Foundation.
Reid: Did he own any assets in Uranium One at the time Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State?
Kerns: You know, I don't know that, but here's what I would...
Reid: He did not. Sold them.
Kerns: Here's what i would like to know…
Reid: He sold them years before. So what you're talking about is a deal that nine members of CFIUS approved unanimously. None of them was Hillary Clinton. You have a donor who separately gave Hillary Clinton donations at a time when she was not Secretary of State. The two things cross in the night, they have no relation to each other. The members of CFIUS have been very clear Hillary Clinton had nothing to do with that approving that deal. She would have had to strong-arm eight people in order to get them to unanimously approve the deal and also the President of the United States would intervene if they saw any problems.
The CFIUS people say now that if that deal came before them today they would still approve it unanimously. There's actually nothing about the deal that's controversial. The only reason we're talking about it is because per your admission, which I think is very honest, the RNC would like us to be talking about this now.
The only thing missing from Reid’s argument? A mic drop at the end.