“All Americans should recoil from the president’s praise for a violent assault on a reporter doing his Constitutionally protected job,” the association said.
Yeah, that didn’t happen at the Montana rally where Trump mentioned the assault Thursday night; the crowd roared in approval.
“This amounts to the celebration of a crime by someone sworn to uphold our laws and an attack on the First Amendment by someone who has solemnly pledged to defend it,” WHCA association said, adding, “We should never shrug at the president cheerleading for a violent act targeting a free and independent news media.”
Earlier today, the Guardian also condemned Trump’s praise of Gianforte, whose reporter Ben Jacobs was on the receiving end of the congressman’s assault. Guardian U.S. editor John Mulholland savaged Trump for praising Gianforte, who pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault for the incident, in which he attacked Jacobs for asking a question about House-passed Trumpcare legislation.
Meanwhile, appearing this morning on Fox News’ Outnumbered, Eric Trump defended Dad’s good clean “fun.”
“He wasn’t the guy that body slammed anybody. He can have fun. By the way, this is actually exactly why my father won,” Eric beamed.
“Because so many people were so sick and tired of the little caged, the perfect, the perfectly scripted politician who memorized their little sound bite and went out there and had no crowds, and they weren’t any fun, and they had no charisma, they had no personality. Hey, to go out and say, as a guy who is a little bit — who is un-PC, and probably won because he’s un-PC.”
Gianforte, meanwhile, had apologized for assaulting Jacobs.
“I made a mistake, and I took an action that I can’t take back,” Gianforte said in late May 2017.
“I’m not proud of what happened. I should not have responded in the way that I did, and for that I’m sorry,” he added.