Sean Spicer threw reporters for a loop at the briefing Monday when he said Donald Trump “very clearly” meant the Obama administration surveilled him when he made the allegations against his predecessor on Twitter in early March, not that Barack Obama specifically wiretapped him.

Sean Spicer
(Photo: Getty Images)

Because the president used wiretapping in quotes in his tweet, the press secretary said Trump could have been referring to “a whole host of surveillance types.” Wiretapping narrowly means using a telephone or telegram wire in order to get information.

“I think if you look at the president’s tweet, he said very clearly ‘wiretapping’ in quotes,” Spicer said. “There’s been substantial discussion in several reports that Bret Baier from Fox on March 3rd talked about evidence of wiretapping. There’s been reports in The New York Times and the BBC and other outlets about other aspects of surveillance that have occurred.”

“The president was very clear in his tweet that it was wiretapping, that that spans a whole host of surveillance types of options.”

Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my “wires tapped” in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 4, 2017

Very clear.

It’s a phrase Spicer turns to a lot when he’s taking questions from reporters. In the last three briefings, he’s used it 21 times alone. Since the Trump administration entered the White House, he’s uttered it 103 times.

Below is every time the president has been “very clear,” according to his press secretary.

(Photo: JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

On cooperating with Russia to defeat ISIS: “I think the president has been very clear in the past that if a country shares our commitment to defeating ISIS and we can work with them in an area of shared, mutual concern, then we will do so.”

On the Obama administration manipulating job numbers: “He’s made very clear in the past what his comments were on how those numbers were articulated in the past.”

On the president’s responsibility to prove Obama surveilled him: “Right, and we’ve made it very clear that we expect the House and the Senate Intelligence Committees to do their job.”

On whether CBO scoring is legitimate: “All I’m suggesting to you is very clearly that the numbers that they gave the last time they did health care were off by more than 50 percent when it came to the number of people insured. That’s not my interpretation, that’s a fact. And I think it’s important for people to understand the differences.”

On Trump’s claim that the media is rude: “I think that he has been very clear that he doesn’t believe some of the behavior and the reporting has been appropriate.”

On the Gang of Eight bill: “I think the president’s been very clear during the campaign trail that that’s not a bill that he supports.”

On Trump’s belief that the Obama administration fudged job numbers: “I talked to the president prior to this, and he said to quote him very clearly — ‘They may have been phony in the past, but it’s very real now.’”

On criticism for the GOP healthcare bill: “The president has also been very clear through all of the discussions — and I’ve commented on that throughout the week — that as he meets with members of Congress and outside groups, that if someone has got an idea that can make this legislation more accessible, give more choice to the American people, drive down costs, make it more patient-centric, he wants to listen to it.”

“I’ve made it very clear since the get-go that this process is going to be one where we’re going to take the best ideas, we’re going to listen to individuals and try to make sure that we achieve the goals that the president has laid out and the principles that he has laid out.”

On wiretapping claims: “I think we spoke very clearly about what we’d like to happen last Sunday and I’m going to reiterate it: We believe that the House and Senate intelligence committee have the appropriate forum and process and staff to look into this matter and report back.”

On sending weapons to Ukraine: “The president, when it comes to his overall negotiating strategy, has made it very clear in a variety of circumstances that his philosophy is not one that says, “I’m going to tell you what I’m going to do.”

On Americans receiving the same healthcare as federal employees: “I think the president understands that very clearly, and that’s, frankly, why he’s pushing the American healthcare — you know, why we’re doing this, is that so many Americans have no choice, and that he wants there to be greater choice and lower costs.”

On weakening support for the border wall: “The president was very clear that was something that he campaigned on and promised the American people as an effort to both protect our national security and our economic security, and he’s going to fulfill that pledge.”

On being pro-life: “With respect to Planned Parenthood specifically, the president has been very clear that he’s pro-life.”

On signing a repeal effort modeled after 2015: “That’s why we’ve been very clear — and I think Paul Ryan laid out, Dr. Price has laid it out, and Mick Mulvaney is laying it out when he goes up to the Hill — that there’s a reason that we keep talking about it in three prongs. Because there are only so many things that you are legally allowed to do through the reconciliation process.”

On getting rid of DACA: “I think the president has been very clear about how he plans to address immigration as a whole, both legal and illegal.”

On Trump Hotel: “Obviously the president has made very clear in that December press conference at Trump Tower he doesn’t have conflicts and he’s done everything in accordance with the guidance that was given and gone well beyond what he ever needed to do.”

On if the budget is realistic: “I’m not going to negotiate the budget from here, but I think that the president has been — made very clear that the vital role that they play in our society.”

On whether the border wall is needed if apprehensions are down: “I think so, sure. The president was very clear. It’s not just needed, the president committed to doing it to the American people.”

On attacks and threats against minorities nationwide: “That’s what the president spoke so eloquently about during his joint address, and made it very clear that while certain policies may divide us as individuals, there are certain principles that can unite us.”

On U.S.-India relations: “As you know very well, he spoke very clearly and frequently about the relationship that we have and hope to continue to grow with India.”

On leaks: “Well, I mean, again, I don’t want to — the allegations — he has been very clear about the concern that he has for leaks.”

On CBO scoring: “The president made it very clear in his press conference and a lot of previous statements, the politically easy thing to do is just let it collapse and let Democrats come back to the table.”

On Trump’s incorrect tweet about Guantánamo Bay detainees: “This president is very clear that he understands the nature of the threat that the people in Gitmo pose to our nation, and the recidivism rate that there are among people that we have released.”

“This administration understands and the president has been very clear that he understands the people that are kept in Gitmo pose a danger to our country and to the rest of the world.”

On Trump’s relationship with Netanyahu: “There was discussion of settlements, and the president was very clear about what his desires and his wishes were.”

On Iranian vessels coming within 150 yards of a Navy ship: “The president has been very clear that this provocative action is something that won’t be tolerated.”

On Congress handling the investigation into Trump wiretapping claims: “They’ve made it very clear that they have the staff, the resources and the process. I think that’s the appropriate place for this to handle.”

“My job is to represent the president and to talk about what he’s doing and what he wants. And he has made very clear what his goal is, what he would like to have happen.”

“I think we’ve made it very clear how he wants this done and where we go from there.”

On White House staying on message: “That being said, I think, look, whether it was Candidate Trump, President-elect Trump, or now President Trump, the president has always made it very clear — or not he made it clear, but I think the voters made it clear that one of the things that they appreciate about him is his ability to be authentic and to speak very forcefully and very directly with the American people.”

On if Spicer has seen evidence of wiretapping: “I’m not going to get in — as the president made very clear, Glenn, as the president said in the statement that he issued on Sunday, we’re not going to have further comment on this until this matter is resolved.”

On surveillance: “I’m going to put a pin in this and say, the statement yesterday made it very clear that he wants House and Senate Intelligence Committee members to use their oversight authority to look into this situation.”

“Just review internally and tell the president, this is what’s — but we made very clear to anyone who asked — and if you know Don and the team here — these are unbelievably talented lawyers.”

“I’ve said it over and over again, I think the president made it very clear in the statement yesterday that he is not going to comment any further on this until Congress does…”

“I’m just going to say that the president made it very clear that, based on numerous things.”

On Mike Flynn: “If…