White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany fired back at USA Today’s David Jackson, saying that the president had not been silent with regard to protests.
During Monday’s press briefing, Jackson accused President Donald Trump of “hiding” while full-scale riots grew out of protests over the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died a week ago in police custody when former officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck. (RELATED: ‘If Anybody Needs To Be Fact-Checked, It’s The Media’: Kayleigh McEnany Unloads On Jim Acosta)
Jackson began by noting that the president had been taken Friday to a bunker for safety while riots came close to the White House grounds. “Would you agree that he is hiding out on this issue?” he asked.
“I would not agree with that at all, I was on the phone with the president at least half a dozen times yesterday and every time I talk to him, he was telling me about a different action he has taken,” McEnany replied, listing several of the actions President Trump had taken over the weekend to help restore order.
“We have not heard him on camera that much, will we hear about this?” Jackson pressed.
McEnany pivoted then to attack media outlets that had claimed Trump was silent on the issue, including the New York Times, the Washington Post and CNN.
“There was a Washington Post article with an egregious headline about Trump staying silent. He has not been silent on this. I have a list of his remarks there and instead, in paragraph 23 they note, oh wait, we are contradicting our own headline, the president did in fact make remarks, contrary to the ‘silent’ headline.”
“You had Don Lemon on CNN saying at 9:38 pm, ‘The president’s been silent.’ Ironically that came four hours after the president was quite audibly speaking at this issue. I was there for the remarks,” McEnany continued. “And then you had CNN double down the next day, Sunday afternoon, saying that the president was silent. I don’t want to bore you with reading out all the statements, but it sounds like I should read a few, like the president saying, ‘It is a grave tragedy that filled Americans all over the country with anger, and grief. And I stand before you as an ally seeking justice. I understand the pain that people are feeling.’ I could go on and on, but I would just be repeating with the president has already said.”
“Make no mistake. The president has not been silent. And at the moment he is acting to protect this country from the lawlessness,” McEnany concluded.