Law & Crime reports:
President Donald Trump dazzled a rally audience in Arizona on Monday by describing a scenario in which he could—-if he really wanted to do so, that is-—shake down a company like ExxonMobil for millions of dollars in campaign cash.
“So, I call some guy, the head of Exxon, I call the head of Exxon–I don’t know” he told the crowd. “I’ll use a company. ‘How, how are you doing, how’s energy coming? When are you doing the exploration? Oh, you need a couple of permits, huh?’ Okay, but I call the head of Exxon, I say, ‘You know, I’d love you to send me $25 million for the campaign.’”
“Absolutely, sir,” Trump continued–using a mock voice apparently intended to reflect an obsequious oil industry CEO happy to engage in the transaction: “Why didn’t you–yes, would you like some more?”
The Washington Post reports:
ExxonMobil wants to get the record straight: The oil producer did not bribe President Trump with campaign donations. The energy giant offered a clarification Monday evening after Trump described a detailed — but strictly theoretical — fundraising call involving the company’s CEO at a rally in Prescott, Ariz., earlier in the day.
“We are aware of the President’s statement regarding a hypothetical call with our CEO,” the company wrote on Twitter, “and just so we’re all clear, it never happened.”
Trump first invoked the company’s name onstage while claiming he could raise more money than Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, who in recent months has gained a significant cash lead over the president.
President Trump boasts about his fund-raising abilities, saying he could call up the head of Exxon for a donation. Exxon later says: “Just so we’re all clear, it never happened.” https://t.co/V3LbGisjj8 pic.twitter.com/nCVOhDctHR
— Bloomberg Politics (@bpolitics) October 20, 2020
We are aware of the President’s statement regarding a hypothetical call with our CEO…and just so we’re all clear, it never happened.
— ExxonMobil (@exxonmobil) October 19, 2020
For those asking (@waltshaub), here’s the full transcript of Trump’s remarks about Exxon and fundraising. Again, the clip that’s circulating has a misleading caption; Trump’s point was that it compromises a president to make personal fundraising calls to big CEOs, so he won’t. pic.twitter.com/EuGRwQg6Z1
— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) October 19, 2020