The past couple of days has been dominated by President Donald Trump’s bogus claim during a press conference that former President Barack Obama and other presidents didn’t call the families of slain soldiers. While the president somewhat backtracked from the comment when called out on it during the presser, Trump would go on to push the issue by telling a talk radio host that he should call Gen. John Kelly and see if Obama called him when Kelly’s son died in Afghanistan in 2010.
During a panel discussion tonight on CNN, things got a bit heated when CNN political contributor and loyal Trump champion Ed Martin continually defended the president’s actions. Right off the bat, Martin and anchor Anderson Cooper went round and round over Trump initially lying about Obama not calling the families of the fallen soldiers.
“At the heart of it was Obama didn’t call every one of them at the same schedule anyone else did,” Martin stated. “I don’t know. I think that seems pretty reasonable. I don’t really know what the problem is.”
“He’s lying,” Cooper retorted. “That’s the problem.”
After Cooper and Martin went back and forth a bit more, whit Martin saying Trump proved he was correct, CNN political commentator Tara Setmayer apparently couldn’t take it anymore.
“Never called? That’s absolutely not true,” she exclaimed. “Let’s stop this. Because this is an asinine argument right now. You’re actually — asinine.”
She continued, “You’re arguing about whether the president of the United States, who clearly lied, we all heard it, backtracked and in a way that was completely inappropriate, still blaming another president instead of taking the high road and being a statesman and simply just saying that I will be contacting the families. We’ve already sent out letters and how difficult this is and we send our condolences. That’s what a statesman should have done. Instead, he has this desire to constantly blame everybody else.”
Martin continued to defend Trump’s actions and comments, saying that Obama didn’t call Kelly’s family — despite Kelly sitting with Obama at a 2011 Gold Star family breakfast — leading to Cooper to declare that was a “sleazy answer.”
Watch the whole tense exchange above, via CNN.
[image via screengrab]
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