Today’s news cycle has been dominated by coverage of President Donald Trump’s phone call to the grieving widow of a soldier killed in the deadly ambush in Niger. After Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL) said that Trump was insensitive to Myeshia Johnson during the call — Wilson was present when Trump called the widow of Sgt. La David Johnson — Trump and the White House have pushed back, claiming Wilson was lying and they had proof.
With another report coming out today that Trump promised another Gold Star family $25,000 but only sent the check out today, MSNBC’s Chuck Todd devoted a panel discussion to the stories, noting that he “didn’t think we would discuss this here” but it kept going throughout the day. “It feels like the president can’t stop digging a hole here,” he added.
Washington Post columnist and NBC News political commentator George Will somewhat came to the president’s defense when asked by Todd about his take on the whole thing, but likely not in a way that Trump would appreciate.
Noting that Trump tends to counterpunch “even when he hasn’t been punched,” Will remarked that one has to take something into account when wondering why the president is insisting he wasn’t insensitive.
“Let me say something mildly on his behalf,” the conservative writer said. “He is barely on speaking terms with the English language. I don’t think I’ve heard him complete a sentence in two years that had a subject, an object, and a verb.”
He continued, “He makes George W. Bush looks like Cicero. He gets on the phone with these people and it is awkward. It is an agonizing moment and he doesn’t respond well.”
Towards the end of the discussion, Todd asked Will why the president doesn’t get the benefit of the doubt on something like this and that it may be that he was just awkward during the call with Ms. Johnson.
“The default position now is that he’s not telling the truth,” Will responded.
Watch the clip above, via MSNBC.
[image via screengrab]
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