Panelists on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" puzzled over President Donald Trump's continued silence on a suicide bombing that ripped apart downtown Nashville on Christmas morning.
The bomb injured eight people and damaged dozens of buildings, but Trump hasn't mentioned the explosion while vacationing at his Mar-A-Lago resort in Florida, and the president's silence is growing louder as President-elect Joe Biden denounced the bomber and thanked police officers who helped clear the area.
"In contrast, President Trump has yet to publicly comment on the attack," said Kasie Hunt, filling in as co-host. "I mean, has he just stopped being president?"
Associated Press reporter Jonathan Lemire, also filling in as guest co-host, agreed.
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"In many ways he has," Lemire said. "We haven't heard from him on the virus in weeks and he's not offered a word of sympathy or even thanks to those who responded to the blast in Nashville, and the governor of Tennessee said he's heard from the White House who offered resources of support, and the mayor of Nashville said he had not heard anything from President Trump. This sort of fits into a pattern where we often don't hear from the president after matters of domestic terror, when he has been so quick, however, as both candidate and chief executive to do speak out when it's more of a perhaps an international incident. What do you make of this? Why do you think the president has yet again remained silent on this? Is it simply he isn't president anymore?"
Elise Jordan, an MSNBC contributor who served as an aide in the George W. Bush White House, also agreed that Trump had simply stopped doing his job.
"Sure looks that way," Jordan said. "I wish that, you know, to be that narcissistic and just have the lack of empathy where you could have so many people dying every day from coronavirus and you could have a suicide bomber explode in downtown Nashville and yet not bat an eyelash, not worry at all and just go along playing golf and making your videos about how great you are and rage tweeting, it just really is incredible."
"If the suicide bomber had been perhaps of a different ethnicity, do you think that Donald Trump would have raised a little bit more holy hell about it?" she added. "Yes, so I want to -- I don't want to talk before we know the full details of what happened. It seems like it was a very elaborate suicide and with a bomber who didn't care about collateral damage, but luckily no one was killed. It's crazy that this many years after 9/11, when for so many years we were worried about getting bombed at Walmart, something like this happens on the streets of a major American city and it's kind of just -- you hear a collective 'whatever,' and the American president doesn't even comment about it."