Quote of the Day: “Well, You Can Go to Prison Instead”

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During an interview with several reporters and a photographer from Time magazine, President Trump showed them a letter from Kim Jong Un and then asked to go off the record. The photographer took a picture of the letter, was told he couldn’t do that, and said “OK.”

Later, one of the reporters asked about the Mueller investigation: “You dictated a letter to Corey Lewandowski telling him to tell [former Attorney General Jeff] Sessions to limit the investigation [to future Russia meddling]. He testified under oath, under threat of prison time, that that was the case Mr. President.” Trump went ballistic:

TRUMP: Excuse me — Under Section II — Well, you can go to prison instead, because, if you use, if you use the photograph you took of the letter that I gave you —

TIME: Do you believe that people should be —

TRUMP: confidentially, I didn’t give it to you to take photographs of it — So don’t play that game with me. Let me just tell you something. You take a look —

TIME: I’m sorry, Mr. President. Were you threatening me with prison time?

TRUMP: Well, I told you the following. I told you you can look at this off-the-record. That doesn’t mean you take out your camera and start taking pictures of it. O.K.? So I hope you don’t have a picture of it. I know you were very quick to pull it out — even you were surprised to see that. You can’t do that stuff. So go have fun with your story. Because I’m sure it will be the 28th horrible story I have in Time Magazine because I never — I mean — ha. It’s incredible. With all I’ve done and the success I’ve had, the way that Time Magazine writes is absolutely incredible.

There’s more in the same vein. Go ahead and click if you can stand to.

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This feels like the most important fundraising drive since I've been CEO of Mother Jones, with staggeringly high stakes and so much uncertainty. In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," I try to unpack the reality we all face and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support Mother Jones’ nonprofit journalism: We need to raise $400,000 to help cover the vital reporting projects we have planned, and right now is no time to pull back.

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