John Oliver explains how Trump's growing Russia scandal is like Watergate, only stupider

John Oliver on Trump's "Stupid Watergate" scandal
(Image credit: Last Week Tonight)

John Oliver began Sunday's Last Week Tonight with the big news of the week — and, increasingly, the big news every week: President Trump. And more specifically, the unfolding tale of Trump and the Trump campaign's odd relationship with Russia. This week, Trump's best news day was immediately quashed by news that Attorney General Jeff Sessions had met with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak and apparently lied to the Senate under oath about it — followed by revelations or new scrutiny of other meetings between top Trump advisers and Kislyak, and their squirrelly responses when confronted.

"There is nothing inherently wrong" with meeting the Russian ambassador, Oliver said, "but it doesn't look great that every time Trump associates are asked about Russia, they respond like they're trying to hide something." He played some clips, then laid out his thesis: "Look, it is not clear what is really going on here yet, although one possibility is that this all amounts to what I'm going to call 'Stupid Watergate' — a potential scandal with all the intrigue of Watergate, except everyone involved is really bad at everything, and the relevant question isn't so much of 'What did the president know and when did he know it' as it is 'Is the president physically capable of knowing things at all?'"

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.


Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up
To continue reading this article...
Continue reading this article and get limited website access each month.
Get unlimited website access, exclusive newsletters plus much more.
Cancel or pause at any time.
Already a subscriber to The Week?
Not sure which email you used for your subscription? Contact us
Peter Weber, The Week US

Peter has worked as a news and culture writer and editor at The Week since the site's launch in 2008. He covers politics, world affairs, religion and cultural currents. His journalism career began as a copy editor at a financial newswire and has included editorial positions at The New York Times Magazine, Facts on File, and Oregon State University.