Not long ago, in late January, Trump skipped a GOP debate in Wisconsin. Instead, he held an event in Des Moines which, he claimed, raised $6 million for military veterans.
Trump, not used to being called out on his lies, had a bit of a problem. The press, as time went on, started reporting that the $6 million was untrue, and it all came to a head yesterday, Memorial Day.
So today Trump held a press conference to clear up what happened to the “over $6 million” he claimed to have raised when he skipped the GOP debate. Not unexpectedly, the presser became contentious as Trump blamed the media for actually following up on his claim.
Donald Trump railed against the media on Tuesday morning as he released details of the money he’s raised and distributed to veterans organizations, even calling out one journalist as a “sleaze” during a combative news conference.
Trump has faced pressure to release information on where the money went after he held a fundraiser for veterans in January in lieu of a Fox News debate.
Speaking with veterans behind him at Trump Tower on Tuesday morning, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee said his campaign has sent off $5.6 million to veterans organizations, which he named one by one after railing against the media for coverage over the disbursements.
“I raised close to $6 million,” Trump said. “It’ll probably be over that amount when it’s all said and done, but as of this moment it’s $5.6 million.”
He also blasted the Fourth Estate, telling reporters that the media should be ashamed.
“Instead of being like, ‘Thank you very much, Mr. Trump,’ or ‘Trump did a good job,’ everyone said: ‘Who got it? Who got it? Who got it?’” Trump said. “And you make me look very bad. I have never received such bad publicity for doing a good job.”
Minutes later, he called out Tom Llamas, a journalist with ABC News.
“I could have asked all these groups to come here and I didn’t want to do that. I’m not looking for credit,” Trump said. “But what I don’t want is when I raise millions of dollars, have people say, like this sleazy guy right over here from ABC. He’s a sleaze in my book. You’re a sleaze because you know the facts and you know the facts well.”
He’s not looking for credit? Really? Then why does he mention it constantly?
As the Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza points out, the only reason that veterans got what Donald Trump promised them was because the media followed up on his promises:
1. Trump said, on the night of the event, that he had raised $6 million for veterans groups. This from a CNN report of the speech:
He did it Thursday night, dazzling a crowd of hundreds of enthusiastic supporters by announcing that he had raised more than $6 million for veterans in one day — $1 million of it from his own checkbook. “We love our vets,” he said.
2. Trump made the $1 million personal donation to veterans groups a week ago and only after WaPo’s David Fahrenthold did a deep dive into where the promised money went. That was four months after the speech/fundraiser where Trump trumpeted that he had donated the money.
What you saw this morning at Trump Tower was the press at its best, not at its worst, as Trump said over and over again.
Good for the press in keeping on him. Now if they can only do this regarding his tax returns.
Not ALL the press is giving Trump a hard time. . In fact, the official North Korean newspaper has all but endorsed Trump:
An editorial published Tuesday heaps praise on Trump as a “wise politician” and a “far-sighted presidential candidate,” according to a report by NKNews.org, which noted that the article referred to many of the presumptive Republican nominee’s statements on foreign policy with respect to North Korea in particular.
“Trump said ‘he will not get involved in the war between the South and the North,’ isn’t this fortunate from North Koreans’ perspective?” the writer of the piece, identified as Chinese North Korean scholar Han Yong Mook, who also referenced Trump’s comments in March saying that he would consider withdrawing United States troops from the Korean peninsula if South Korea does not pay more for its defense.
“Yes do it, now … Who knew that the slogan ‘Yankee Go Home’ would come true like this?” Han wrote, according to the report. “The day when the ‘Yankee Go Home’ slogan becomes real would be the day of Korean Unification.”