Trump defends personal attacks on Pelosi: ‘Did you hear what she said about me?’
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — President Donald Trump on Friday continued his showdown with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and congressional Democrats regarding oversight of the Mueller investigation and potential impeachment, declaring: “It’s over.”
“All they do is want to try and do a redo of the Mueller report,” Trump charged, fielding questions from reporters at the White House as he departed for a trip to Tokyo, Japan. “They were very unhappy with the Mueller report. They want to do a redo of the Mueller report. It’s over. There is no redo. They lost. It’s very clear. There was no collusion. There was no obstruction so there’s no redo.”
Pressed by ABC News’ Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl on what he was trying to accomplish with his personal attacks on Pelosi this week, the president shot back, insisting the speaker started it when she accused Trump of leading a cover-up.
Pelosi on Thursday also said Trump’s family or members of his administration need to stage “an intervention.”
“When you say ‘a personal attack,’ did you hear what she said about me long before I went after her?” Trump asked. “Did you hear? She made horrible statements. She knows they are not true.”
“She said terrible things, so I just responded in kind,” he added. “Look, you think Nancy is the same as she was? She’s not.”
On Thursday night, he tweeted out a segment from the Fox Business program “Lou Dobbs Tonight” showing an edited video of Pelosi earlier in the day titled “Pelosi stammers through news conference.”
The video was edited to highlight when Pelosi paused or hesitated while speaking.
A separate video circulating on Twitter was doctored to make it appears as if Pelosi were slurring her words during remarks at a Washington think tank on Wednesday.
That prompted Pelosi’s daughter Christine to tweet that “Republicans and their conservative allies have been pumping this despicable fake meme for years! Now they are caught. #FactCheck: Madam Speaker doesn’t even drink alcohol!
On Friday, when asked: “Is your relationship with Nancy Pelosi soured to the point that it’s too personal — and some of the altered videos being disseminated — Is that going too far? Trump said, “Well, I don’t know about the videos.”
While touting his own record as president, Trump said he believes Pelosi “is not helping this country” and called Democrats “obstructionists.”
“They are hurting our country very, very bad,” Trump said. “We can pass so many different bills right now but all they want to do is investigate because they failed with Robert Mueller and the Mueller report.”
Trump defended his decision to empower Attorney General William Barr, who he called “a great man,” with the ability to declassify intelligence related to the origins of the Russia investigation.
“He’s a great gentleman and a highly respected man,” Trumps said of Barr. “They will be able to see how this hoax, how the hoax or witch hunt started and why it started. It was an attempted coup or an attempted take down of the President of the United States. It should never have happen to anybody else.”
“People have been asking me to declassify for a long period of I’ve decided to do it,” Trump added. “You’re going to learn a lot. I hope it’s going to be nice, but perhaps it won’t be.”
Trump denied that he had approved the move in order to get revenge against his political adversaries.
“It’s not payback,” he said. “I don’t care about payback. I think it’s very important for our country to find out what happened.”
The president predicted that his approval rating would nearly double if the press reported on “serious good news,” such as on the economy or lowering the cost of prescription drugs.
“If you gave serious good news the way you’re supposed to, I’d probably be at 70 or 75 based on the economy alone,” he claimed.
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