Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, President Trump falsely accused Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL) of changing her story about insensitive comments she says the president made to a grieving military widow during a phone call on Tuesday.
“Didn’t say what that congresswoman said. Didn’t say it at all,” Trump told reporters. “She knows it, and she now is not saying it. I did not say what she said, and I’d like her to make the statement again because I did not say what she said.”
Trump went on to suggest that Wilson is liar.
“I had a very nice conversation with the woman, with the wife, who sounded like a lovely woman — did not say what the congresswoman said, and most people aren’t too surprised to hear that,” he said.
A reporter then asked Trump about the “proof” he claimed to have that Wilson is lying in a tweet earlier Wednesday.
“Let her make her statement again and then you’ll find out,” he replied.
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 18, 2017
Minutes later, Wilson — who has insisted all along that she heard Trump tell the widow, Myeshia Johnson, that her husband, Sgt. La David T. Johnson, “knew what he was signing up for” — tweeted that she stands by her account, and criticized Trump for not using Myeshia’s name.
I still stand by my account of the call b/t @realDonaldTrump and Myesha Johnson. That is her name, Mr. Trump. Not "the woman" or "the wife."
— Rep Frederica Wilson (@RepWilson) October 18, 2017
Wilson’s account of Trump’s comments to Myeshia has been seconded by Sgt. Johnson’s mother, who told the Washington Post that Trump “did disrespect my son and my daughter and also me and my husband.”
Sgt. Johnson’s mother later said the same thing to a New York Times reporter.
Cowanda Jones-Johnson, Sgt. Johnson's mom, just sent me a FB message. She is backing Rep. Wilson's version. "Yes. He did state that comment"
— Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) October 18, 2017
It’s unclear what would’ve given Trump the idea that Wilson changed her story in the first place. After Trump initially called her a liar, Wilson tweeted that she stands by her story “and was not the only one who heard and was dismayed by his insensitive remarks.”