‘Assault on the Truth’: Jake Tapper Calls Out Trump Amid Reports WH Directed NOAA to Back POTUS Hurricane Story
“Assault on the truth.”
CNN’s Jake Tapper opened The Lead with the news today that the White House was directly involved in the pushback against the Birmingham NWS tweet that contradicted President Donald Trump‘s Alabama hurricane tweet.
The Washington Post reports that Trump himself was involved. Both the Post and the New York Times report that Mick Mulvaney called Commerce Sec. Wilbur Ross and told him to deal with this. Ross, per other reporting, called the acting head of NOAA. He reportedly threatened firings, though the Commerce department has denied that reporting.
This afternoon, the president denied he got involved in telling staffers to push back against the NWS tweet.
“President Trump has always had a tenuous relationship with facts and truth,” Tapper said. “Sometimes these are fringe, even racist beliefs such as his campaign to suggest the first African-American president was born in Africa, or his ridiculous claim that he saw on TV thousands of Arab-Americans in New Jersey celebrating 9/11. Those are claims that are inaccurate and bigoted and indecent. There are too many to go through, but we all remember of course… his presidency began when he took issue when the National Park Service clearly demonstrated that his inaugural crowds were smaller than that of his predecessor. But this — this is something else.”
Tapper called out Trump for “using, ordering the U.S. government — not just his press secretaries, but the U.S. Government — to further his falsehoods.”
The unsigned statement from NOAA backing up Trump, Tapper said, was not just “the latest example of the president’s disdain for facts that he does not like” but also — as the top NOAA scientist put it — a dangerous thing to do with respect to public safety concerns.
You can watch above, via CNN.
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