David Jolly, a former Republican congressman from Florida, stunned a CNN panel on Monday morning when he said President Donald Trump isn’t “intellectually qualified” to be president.
When asked by CNN’s Poppy Harlow whether Trump should publicly apologize if it’s revealed that he was wrong in accusing former President Barack Obama of wiretapping Trump Tower during the 2016 election, Jolly said that he should — but he also said that an apology wouldn’t mask Trump’s other major shortcomings as president.
“There’s a bigger issue, whether this president is intellectually qualified to be President of the United States,” Jolly said.
Harlow seemed taken aback by Jolly’s statement.
“You’re saying he’s not smart enough?” she asked him. “That’s quite a charge.”
Jolly went on to explain that Trump has very little knowledge about policy, and that he’s relying on cable news shows to inform him about the details of legislation he’s already endorsed.
“I think he’s learning about his own health care bill listening to you and Chris in the morning,” he told her. “He does not practice in details, nor understands the finer points of domestic or foreign policy. When he throws out a wiretap charge, what does that mean? We know he’s lying about that, but he doesn’t understand what a FISA court is. He doesn’t understand that he just made an allegation of a felony, he doesn’t understand that he’s crippling the United States on a world stage. That speaks to more than credibility, that speaks to intellect.”
Former Sen. Rick Santorum reacted with outrage to Jolly’s statements and defended Trump’s intellectual capabilities.
“Well, I just think it’s an absurd claim to suggest that the president doesn’t have the intellect to be president,” he said. “President Trump has run a multi-billion dollar organization. He ran the most, I would say, historic campaign from the standpoint of coming out from nowhere to be elected president.”
Watch the whole segment below.