not helping
May 29, 2020

President Trump isn't helping the situation in Minnesota with his tweets, the state's governor says.

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz (D) spoke in a news conference on Friday amid the ongoing protests in Minneapolis over the death of George Floyd, a black man who died Monday after a white police officer kneeled on his neck for several minutes. In a late-night tweet about the protests, Trump wrote that "these THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd" and that "when the looting starts, the shooting starts."

"It's just not helpful," Walz said when asked for his reaction to Trump's tweets. "In the moment where we're at, in a moment that is so volatile, anything we do to add fuel to that fire is really, really challenging."

Walz, who said he spoke to the president, added that "there's a way to do this without inflaming." Trump's tweet earned a warning label from Twitter, which said the tweet violated its rules against glorifying violence. The White House later posted the exact same tweet, and was hit with the same warning label from Twitter. Brendan Morrow

January 8, 2019

Did President Trump completely fabricate an anecdote about his predecessors' support for the wall?

Vice President Mike Pence was asked this question Tuesday after President Trump claimed last week that "some" past presidents have privately told him they wish they had built a border wall during their administration, only for every living former president to come out with statements denying that any such conversations took place.

When NBC's Hallie Jackson asked Pence about this in an interview, he responded, "I know the president has said that that was his impression from previous administrations." From there, he cited public comments from the former presidents, not one-on-one conversations like Trump was referencing.

"I know I've seen clips of previous presidents talking about the importance of border security, the importance of addressing the issue of illegal immigration," Pence said.

The vice president faced essentially the same question in another interview Tuesday morning, with ABC's Jonathan Karl asking Pence why Americans should believe Trump when he constantly says things that aren't true, with this claim about past presidents being an example. This time, Pence seemed to suggest that even if what Trump said is false, it doesn't matter.

"The American people aren't as concerned about the political debate as they are concerned about what’s really happening at the border," he said. Watch Pence's comments on Today below. Brendan Morrow

October 10, 2018

President Trump is still getting the hang of being the nation's comforter-in-chief.

Trump gave some not-so-reassuring comments shortly before Hurricane Michael made landfall in Florida on Wednesday. CNN reports that Trump was asked by the press to send a message to those in the storm's path.

"I say God bless you all," said Trump. "That's my message because that's what it is. The storm is there. It's sort of too late to do that now, from the standpoint of moving."

So there you have it: It is what it is. Or is it? Trump also reportedly called the storm a "massive tornado," which is a completely different kind of storm. The president was similarly comforting last month, when he said Hurricane Florence was poised to be "tremendously big and tremendously wet." The federal government helped in that case, he said, "because we have no choice."

FEMA Director Brock Long on Wednesday said that it's now too late for Floridians to evacuate before the worst of Michael hits. Trump expressed sadness that not everyone had left in time. "You have people that are stuck," he said, "they're just stuck there." But not to worry, he concluded on a more positive note: "They will be okay. They are strong, smart, wonderful people." Summer Meza

August 22, 2018

President Trump sat down with Fox & Friends host Ainsley Earhardt on Wednesday to talk about the last 24 hours of news.

Michael Cohen, Trump's longtime fixer, pleaded guilty Tuesday to committing campaign finance violations, describing how he paid hush money to Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal "at the direction" of then-candidate Trump. The two women claim to have had affairs with Trump. While Trump previously said he did not know about Cohen's payments to the women, the attorney last month released a 2016 recording of the two men discussing whether to pay by cash or check. Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani further revealed this spring that Trump reimbursed Cohen for the funds.

When asked Wednesday whether he knew about the payments, Trump said he only knew "later on." He emphasized that the money wasn't "taken out of campaign finance," but his own pocket. "They didn't come out of the campaign," he said of the funds, "they came from me." He conceded that if the money had been taken from the campaign, "that could be a little dicey," but said that because he paid personally the transaction didn't constitute a campaign finance violation.

In fact, Trump's failure to report this purportedly personal payment to Cohen is what makes the transaction problematic, as Cohen explained that the payments were made "for the purpose of influencing the election" by helping the campaign dodge a public scandal. Watch the moment below, via Fox News. Summer Meza

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