Former President Barack Obama's chief of staff on Thursday pushed back against President Donald Trump's allegations that Obama ordered the wiretapping of the Trump Tower.
"The president cannot order a wiretap, the president does not order a wiretap, and the president did not order a wiretap," Denis McDonough said on CBS when asked if the president can order a wiretap.
The comments came hours before the Republican and Democratic leaders of the Senate intelligence committee said they found no evidence that Obama wiretapped the Trump Tower during the presidential election.
The saga started 12 days ago, when Trump tweeted that he "just found out that Obama had my 'wires tapped' in Trump Tower just before the victory [on Election Day]. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism."
On Wednesday, Trump defended the claim, explaining in an interview on Fox News that “Wiretap covers a lot of different things.”
On Thursday, after the announcement by the intelligence committee, the White House said that Trump stands by his claim.
"He stands by it," said White House press secretary Sean Spicer, who that Trump was referring to any communications of his associates being swept up by surveillance, not necessarily actions targeted specifically at Trump.
"There’s been a vast amount of reporting, which I just detailed, about activity that was going on during the 2016 election. There's no question there were surveillance techniques used throughout this," he added.