In phone call to Trump, New York Times reporter asks only about Meryl Streep

Ringmaster Trump orchestrates the circus.

President-elect Donald Trump. CREDIT: AP Photo/Evan Vucci
President-elect Donald Trump. CREDIT: AP Photo/Evan Vucci

There are a lot of important questions to ask President-elect Donald Trump.

The U.S. intelligence community has concluded that Russia intervened in the presidential election and Trump has yet to fully accept their analysis. The Office of Government Ethics has warned that the Senate will hold confirmation hearings for Trump nominees who thus far have not been vetted for conflicts of interests.

President-elect Donald Trump’s companies and people close to him are under scrutiny for conflicts of interest, including Trump’s decision to continue to receive payments from foreign governments as President. And this week, Congress is set to repeal the Affordable Care Act without a replacement plan — a decision that would have dire consequences for millions of Americans.

Yet, a midnight phone call to Trump by New York Times reporter Patrick Healy focused on the one question that has nothing to do with keeping America safe: what did Trump think of Meryl Streep taking to the Golden Globes stage on Sunday to call him out for mocking a disabled reporter in 2015?

Trump told Times’ Patrick Healy, who currently covers cultural issues but was a national political correspondent for the presidential campaign, that he had not seen Streep’s remarks, but said that he was “not surprised” that he was pilloried by a “Hillary lover” and “liberal movie people.”

“I was never mocking anyone,” Trump told Healy, who wrote that the President-elect grew heated during the interview. “I was calling into question a reporter who had gotten nervous because he had changed his story.” Kovaleski has since tried to “back away” from an article about the terrorist attacks of September 2001.

Trump’s denial is old news and has also been widely debunked.

It’s unclear whether Healy — who also covered Hillary Clinton’s campaign in 2008 — asked Trump other questions, but none were reported in his piece.

Trump was game to continue the Streep narrative. He later tweeted a three-part rant about Streep, saying that he had never mocked New York Times reporter Serge. F. Kovaleski.

Trump is latching onto the Streep issue ahead of a very important week. The Senate will consider his nominees for Attorney General, CIA Director, Secretary of Homeland Security, Education Secretary, Secretary of State, Transportation Secretary and Housing.

Many of these nominations are quite controversial. For example, his nominee for Secretary of States, Rex Tillerson was awarded the Medal of Friendship by Vladimir Putin and opposed sanctions on Russia even after the country invaded Crimea.

Trump is also holding a press conference on Wednesday where he is expected to finally address what his relationship with his companies will be as president.