San Antonio Spurs’ coach Gregg Popovich ripped into President Trump for comments he made in a press conference alongside Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) Monday.
What did Popovich say?
The famed NBA coach called Dave Zirin of The Nation to give him his thoughts about what Trump said.
“I’ve been amazed and disappointed by so much of what this president had said,” he told Zirin, “and his approach to running this country, which seems to be one of just a never-ending divisiveness.”
“But his comments today about those who have lost loved ones in times of war and his lies that previous presidents Obama and Bush never contacted their families, is so beyond the pale,” he continued, “I almost don’t have the words.”
“This man in the Oval Office is a soulless coward who thinks that he can only become large by belittling others,” he added.
“This has of course been a common practice of his,” Popovich said, “but to do it in this manner—and to lie about how previous presidents responded to the deaths of soldiers—is as low as it gets. We have a pathological liar in the White House: unfit intellectually, emotionally, and psychologically to hold this office and the whole world knows it, especially those around him every day.”
“The people who work with this President should be ashamed because they know it better than anyone just how unfit he is, and yet they choose to do nothing about it,” he concluded. “This is their shame most of all.”
What did Trump say?
Standing next to McConnell, Trump claimed that he had been calling wounded soldierswhen past presidents hadn’t, apparently to contrast his concern for their well-being.
Here’s the video of his comments:
Trump on soldiers killed in Niger: “President Obama and other presidents, most of them didn’t make calls … I call when it’s appropriate.” pic.twitter.com/sgj5iEuDhz
— Axios (@axios) October 16, 2017
“So the traditional way, if you look at President Obama and other presidents, most of them didn’t make calls,” Trump said. “A lot of them didn’t make calls.”
“I like to call when it’s appropriate,” he continued, “when I think I’m able to do it.”
Immediately there were objections to his claim, as former advisors in the Obama administration said it was untrue, and others in the media called it false. When asked to clarify, the White House said he was merely “stating the facts.”