President Donald Trump suggested Tuesday that President Barack Obama didn’t call chief of staff John Kelly after Kelly’s son was killed in combat.
“You can ask General Kelly. Did he get a call from Obama?” Trump said on Fox News Radio after being asked about the uproar he caused Monday when he suggested that Obama and other presidents didn’t call the families of fallen soldiers.
The Associated Press reported after Trump made the comments that White House visitor records show that Obama hosted Kelly at a breakfast for Gold Star families after his son died in 2010 in Afghanistan.
“If you look at President Obama and other presidents, most of them didn’t make calls — a lot of them didn’t make calls — I like to make calls when it’s appropriate,” Trump said at a Rose Garden press conference Monday when asked about why he hasn’t spoken publicly about the deaths of four Special Forces soldiers in Niger.
One former Obama staffer, Alyssa Mastromonaco, tweeted, “that’s a f***ing lie. to say president obama (or past presidents) didn’t call the family members of soldiers KIA – he’s a deranged animal.”
Another former Obama administration official also said Trump’s claim is wrong.
“President Trump’s claim is wrong. President Obama engaged families of the fallen and wounded warriors throughout his presidency through calls, letters, visits to Section 60 at Arlington, visits to Walter Reed, visits to Dover, and regular meetings with Gold Star Families at the White House and across the country,” the official told NBC News.