On Wednesday during his visit to the United Kingdom, President Donald Trump reiterated his dubious claim that he had a legitimate medical deferment from serving in the Vietnam war — but appeared to add that he didn’t feel particularly compelled to do his part anyway because he “wasn’t a fan” of the war.
Former White House official David Gergen pulled no punches on CNN’s “OutFront.”
“51 percent of people believe the United States should have stayed out of Vietnam; 57 percent of the 50 or older think that,” said host Erin Burnett. “Obviously it was a divisive war. David, does that justify his comments as a sitting president of the United States?”
“Absolutely not,” said Gergen. “And let’s be very clear, Erin, the only thing that veterans hate more than a draft dodger is a man who lies about it. And that’s what this president has been doing about his lack of military service for a number of years now.
“Just to review the bidding, he had four deferments for education, fair enough. But then he had the fifth deferment that kept him out of the war for so-called bone spurs,” said Gergen. “And that — the medical records are lost, but the daughters of the podiatrist who worked with him say that the podiatrist basically gave him that letter that would disqualify him from service as a favor to the family. These bone spurs in a healthy man, an athletic man, magically disappeared later. The record is quite clear.”
“I just want to say one other thing. It’s particularly galling that he would take — these views once again come up and be featured in a news story tonight on the 75th anniversary of D-Day,” added Gergen. “This ought to be a day we solemnly remember, and instead we have Donald Trump parading this fraudulent story.”
Watch Jill Stein go off the rails when CNN host asks her about Moscow dinner with Putin
On Saturday, center-right CNN host Michael Smerconish invited 2016 Green Party candidate Jill Stein on air to discuss Hillary Clinton's characterization of her as a Russian asset. But under the slightest pushback, Stein derailed the conversation with a stream of false equivalence and dodges.
"Do you think that she's trying to draw a nefarious inference from that photograph we've an seen so many times of the dinner that you attended at which President Putin was present?" asked Smerconish. "I think that Gen. Flynn was somebody else at the table. Is that what's driving her, as far as you know?"
CNN contributor goes to bat for Hillary Clinton in battle with Tulsi Gabbard
On CNN Saturday, commentator and Spectrum News reporter Errol Louis suggested that former Secretary of State and 2016 presidential nominee Hillary Clinton had a point in her criticism of Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI).
"Errol, this general narrative about Congresswoman Gabbard is not new, right?" asked anchor Victor Blackwell. "She hit back against her critics at the debate this week, those who said that she's used Russian talking points, criticized her for meeting with Assad a couple of years ago. The question I have is, why? Why would Secretary Clinton go as far as she did to suggest that the Russians are grooming her? That suggests some interactivity here."
GOP lawmaker hammers Trump for Ukraine server conspiracy theory: ‘Are we trying to exculpate Russia?’
Rep. Francis Rooney (R-OK) on Friday signaled that he was taking House Democrats' impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump far more seriously than many of his Republican colleagues.
During an interview with CNN's Poppy Harlow, Rooney said he was very disturbed at the president's efforts to prove a debunked conspiracy theory about Ukraine purportedly being behind the hack of the Democratic National Committee in 2016, despite the fact that all evidence that has been uncovered points directly to Russia as the true culprit.
Harlow then asked him what he made about House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-CA) comment that "all roads" in the Ukraine scandal lead back to Russian President Vladimir Putin.