One of Bernie Sanders‘ more recognizable supporters has offered a new endorsement of sorts by trying to validate the president’s unspecified so-called “Obamagate” criminal conspiracy theory about his predecessor. Joe Rogan, the suspected white supremacist who just a few months ago suggested he would vote for Sanders, recently indicated on his podcast that he believed Donald Trump‘s baseless and vague charges that Barack Obama somehow broke a law during the transition from his administration to the current one.
A video that hit social media on Tuesday showed Rogan in a studio discussing the merits of Trump’s accusation.
“The exiting president literally hires, or gets the FBI to investigate Trump,” Rogan is shown declaring without any proof. After the woman co-hosting the podcast admits she doesn’t know anything about Obamagate aside from it being dependent on “a series of conspiracy there’s in order for it to even hold up,” Rogan suggests that her information is old. He said what Obama did (without saying exactly what he thinks Obama did) “was illegal.” He said Obama was “essentially using the FBI to spy on Trump,” a theory that former National Security Adviser Susan Rice debunked on Tuesday.
The nearly minute-and-a-half clip ends with Rogan mocking Joe Biden.
Trump has been pushing his Obamagate theory hard for the past few weeks as he gets into prime campaign mode, harkening back to his anti-Black rhetoric when he first ran for president four years ago. The latest incarnation of his anti-Obama bombast has tried to criminalize the first Black president as Trump makes a case for his own re-election.
In short, Obamagate is a made-up and unproven conspiracy theory that even Trump’s own Attorney General William Barr said would not result in any investigation, let alone any criminal charges.
Trump wants Americans to believe that Obama tied to entrap incoming National Security Adviser Michael Flynn to discredit and possibly invalidate the 2016 election. Obamagate claims were renewed and amplified earlier this month after the Justice Department dropped criminal charges against Trump crony Flynn for his questionable correspondence with a Russian official who is a suspected spy; charges that Flynn had pleaded guilty to.
But the declassification of an email sent by Rice, Obama’s national security adviser, has effectively undermined Trump’s Obamagate claims. A statement released Tuesday on behalf of Rice said that the declassification of the email “confirms what she and others have indicated all along: that the Obama Administration had legitimate counter-intelligence concerns about National Security Adviser-designate Flynn’s communication with Russia.”
While Trump has maintained without proof that Obama’s team had the FBI investigate Flynn, Rice’s statement said that the “email clearly states that President Obama stressed that he was ‘not asking about, initiating or instructing anything from a law enforcement perspective.”
Still, the damage has apparently been done as Rogan — who’s been accused of being racist and anti-Black — parrotted Trump’s fake news “Obamagate” conspiracy to his millions of followers. To be clear, Rogan has said the N-word with no hesitation on his podcast and once even compared a Black neighborhood to “Planet of the Apes.” This is the same person whose support was openly welcomed by Sanders, the Vermont senator who famously questioned Obama’s leadership abilities before reversing course during his 2020 campaign.
This is America.