Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said Friday that Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL) “started something that was rude” by questioning Trump about his comments to a Gold Star widow.
“[Wilson] is not a big fan of the president,” Graham said, talking to reporters at the Capitol Friday. “I think she started something that was rude. I would never do that.”
Graham’s comments are the latest in an ongoing feud between the White House and Wilson. Wilson was in the car with Gold Star widow Myeshia Johnson when Trump called. Wilson and the family of the fallen soldier, Army Sgt. La David Johnson, recounted that Trump said Johnson “must’ve known what he signed up for” by joining the military and putting himself in harm’s way.
Wilson first spoke out about the comments after Trump bragged earlier this week about his willingness to call Gold Star families.
“When she got off the phone, she said, ‘He didn’t even know his name. He kept calling him, ‘Your guy,'” Wilson recounted, referring to Johnson’s widow. “He was calling the fallen soldier, ‘Your guy.’ And he never said his name because he did not know his name. So he kept saying, ‘Your guy. Your guy. Your guy.’ And that was devastating to her.”
Trump responded by saying Wilson made up the call.
Chief of staff Gen. John Kelly later shot back at Wilson during Thursday’s White House press briefing, defending the president and saying Wilson was politicizing the family’s loss. He also wrongfully claimed that Wilson had previously bragged about getting funding for the FBI rather than focusing on two agents who had died when she spoke at the Bureau in 2015.
The saga has since devolved into a political circus, with parties from all corners defending Trump in increasingly outlandish ways.
“If I were in the car with the family and the president — if President Obama was calling, I would never suggest from a political point of view he did something inappropriate,” Graham said Friday. “Gen. Kelly expressed it better than I could hope to express, what it’s like to go through this.”
The White House also claimed Friday that it was “highly inappropriate” for anyone — including the press, who had challenged him on his comments — to debate with a “four-star general” like Kelly on the matter and in general.
Asked Friday if it was, indeed, inappropriate to debate with a general, Graham said, “No, not in America.” But moments later, he called Wilson’s questioning of Trump “rude.”
Other egregious responses include a video by the National Rifle Association released on Friday, which claims Americans are “witnesses to the most ruthless attack on a president and the people who voted for him and the free system that allowed it to happen in American history.”
— NRATV (@NRATV) October 20, 2017
The ad, underscored by ominous music while footage of riots play, doesn’t mention guns once.
“These saboteurs, slashing away with their leaks and sneers, their phony accusations and gagging sanctimony, drive their daggers through the heart of our future,” NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch says. “No. Their fate will be failure, and they will perish in the political flames of their own fires.”