US President Donald Trump drew a barrage of criticism on Thursday after he launched a brutal personal attack on Twitter against a female TV news host.
Prominent figures from across the political spectrum denounced Trump for a vitriolic and sexist rant against Mika Brzezinski, one of the anchors of the MSNBC program “Morning Joe”, Reuters reports.
On Thursday, Trump mocked Brzezinski, calling her “crazy” and alleging that she had been bleeding at one point from a facelift.
In a Twitter tirade, Trump called Brzezinski, a journalist and daughter of former White House national security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski, “low I.Q. Crazy Mika” and said she was “bleeding badly from a face-lift” when she visited his Mar-A-Lago estate around New Year’s Eve.
Meanwhile, he also lashed out at Joe Scarborough, Brzezinski’s co-host on the “Morning Joe” program, calling the former Republican Congressman “Psycho Joe”.
Trump often decries what he calls “fake news” in the American media and is known to regularly attach his journalist critics, but his attack on Brzezinski marked a new low, several prominent public figures said.
“I don’t see that as an appropriate comment,” Republican House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan said of Trump’s tweets, saying they do not help improve civility in Washington.
The tweets represent “what is wrong with American politics, not the greatness of America,” said Republican Senator Lindsey Graham.
Republican senator Ben Sasse called Trump’s remarks “beneath the dignity of your office.”
Nancy Pelosi, the top Democrat in the House of Representatives, on Twitter called Trump’s tweets “sexist, an assault on the freedom of the press & an insult to all women.”
The “Morning Joe” program broadcast live telephone interviews with Trump during the 2016 presidential race, but its hosts have turned increasingly critical of him since he took office in January.
On Thursday’s show, Brzezinski excoriated the Trump administration and said its officials should not act “lobotomized” because they are scared of the president.
“It’s a sad day for America when the president spends his time bullying, lying and spewing petty personal attacks instead of doing his job,” MSNBC’s communications office said on Twitter following Trump’s tirade against ‘Morning Joe’ hosts.
At a briefing, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders called it a “false narrative” to portray Trump’s remarks as “an attack on a woman” rather than on a critic, adding, “What about the constant attacks that he receives?”
“He’s not going to sit back and get attacked by the liberal media, Hollywood elites. And when they hit him, he’s going to hit back,” Sanders said. “I don’t think it’s a surprise to anybody that he fights fire with fire.”
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