President Trump lashed out at Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski with unusually harsh personal attacks on the co-hosts of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” calling Brzezinski “crazy” and Scarborough “psycho.”
“I heard poorly rated @Morning_Joe speaks badly of me (don’t watch anymore),” Trump wrote on Twitter. “Then how come low I.Q. Crazy Mika, along with Psycho Joe, came to Mar-a-Lago 3 nights in a row around New Year’s Eve, and insisted on joining me. She was bleeding badly from a face-lift. I said no!”
An MSNBC spokeswoman responded in a statement to Yahoo News: “It’s a sad day for America when the president spends his time bullying, lying and spewing petty personal attacks instead of doing his job.”
“Never imagined a day when I would think to myself, ‘it is beneath my dignity to respond to the President of the United States,’” tweeted Mark Kornblau, senior vice president of communications for the NBC News Group.
Several prominent Republicans, including Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse, condemned the president’s attacks.
“Please just stop,” Sasse tweeted. “This isn’t normal and it’s beneath the dignity of your office.”
Fox News host Meghan McCain called Trump’s tweet “cruel” and “unpresidential.”
Rep. Lynn Jenkins, R-Kan., tweeted her disgust.
“This is not okay,” Jenkins wrote. “As a female in politics I am often criticized for my looks. We should be working to empower women.”
Ana Navarro, a conservative CNN commentator and frequent critic of Trump’s, said his tweets fit a disturbing pattern of a “long list of women Trump’s attacked.”
Brzezinski herself took a thinly veiled swipe at Trump, tweeting a photo of the back of a Cheerios box that included an image of a child with the tagline “Made For Little Hands.”
Trump didn’t indicate what offended him in particular. The hosts have been increasingly critical of the administration in recent months. On Thursday they discussed, among other topics, Trump’s apparent lack of knowledge about the details of the Republican health care bill and how presidential adviser and Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner’s one-man diplomacy in the Middle East was undercutting Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
Appearing on Fox News, White House deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders defended Trump’s tweets.
“I think what’s necessary is to push back against unnecessary attacks on the president both personally. I have seen far worse things come out of that show,” Sanders said. “There have been an outrageous number of personal attacks — not just [against] him but [against], frankly, everyone around him.”
She added: “This is a president who fights fire with fire and certainly will not be allowed to be bullied by liberal media or liberal elites in Hollywood or anywhere else.”
Stephanie Grisham, a spokeswoman for Melania Trump, said she stands by the president.
“As the first lady has stated publicly in the past, when her husband gets attacked, he will punch back 10 times harder,” Grisham said.
Scarborough and Brzezinski,
The pair then visited Trump at the White House shortly after his inauguration.
Trump’s tweeted attack on the first couple of cable news comes a day after
“The failing @nytimes writes false story after false story about me,” Trump tweeted. “They don’t even call to verify the facts of a story. A Fake News Joke!”
The newspaper disputed Trump’s claim.
“We always call the White House for comment,” a Times spokeswoman told Yahoo News. “The president’s tweet is incorrect.”
The Times reported that a Republican senator who attended Monday’s health care meeting at the White House left with “a sense that the president did not have a grasp of some basic elements of the Senate plan” and “seemed especially confused when a moderate Republican complained that opponents of the bill would cast it as a massive tax break for the wealthy.”
Trump also fumed at the Washington Post, which on Tuesday
“There’s a level of viciousness that I was not expecting,” she said.
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