White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany read a prepared statement on Friday pushing back against a bombshell article published by The Atlantic on Thursday evening that claimed President Trump regarded the dead World War I Veterans interred at Belleau Wood as “suckers” and “losers” for getting killed in action and dismissed former Sen. John McCain as a “fucking loser.”
When McEnany finished reading her statement, she turned and fled the podium as reporters showered her with questions about disturbing claims made in the article.
“Why did the president say, ‘I like people who weren’t captured?'” a female reporter could be heard asking as McEnany made a brisk exit.
“Kayleigh, who specifically said at Robert Kelly’s grave, ‘I don’t get it. What was in it for them?’ Was it the president?” CNN’s Jim Acosta asked as McEnany left the room.
Kayleigh: *runs away* pic.twitter.com/odhay6Xrz3
— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) September 4, 2020
McEnany’s quick exit came hours after The Atlantic magazine’s editor-in-chief, Jeffrey Goldberg, ran a blockbuster report — based on four anonymous sources — that Trump cancelled a 2018 trip to a WWI American cemetery in France for fear of his hair getting mussed in the rain, and demeaned the war dead interred there as “suckers” and “losers.” In addition, the story claimed Trump seethed over having to honor McCain upon his death and complained about lowering the White House flag to half-staff in memoriam.
The report has since been confirmed by The Associated Press and The Washington Post.
Speaking on the tarmac at Joint Base Andrews after returning from a rally in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, Trump vigorously denied the reports and claimed the sources “made it up” and without identifying who he though they were, suggested, “probably it’s a couple of people that have been failures in my administration that I got rid of and I couldn’t get rid of them fast enough.”
Trump also said that he would swear — not to God — but “on whatever, or whoever, I was asked to swear on” that he never called McCain a “loser.”
That claim is unequivocally false. And for proof you have to look no further than…Donald Trump’s own Twitter timeline.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 18, 2015
Trump also said “I don’t like losers” while attacking John McCain in 2015.
“He’s a war hero because he was captured,” Trump also said at the time. “I like people that weren’t captured.”