President Donald Trump’s decision to mock his Supreme Court nominee’s accuser during a Tuesday political rally drew immediate and widespread criticism, including from a co-host of one of his favorite cable news shows.
According to Mediaite, Fox News Channel’s Brian Kilmeade questioned the “wisdom” of Trump’s “disparaging” depiction of Christine Blasey Ford, who claims Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her 36 years ago.
As The Hill reported, Trump portrayed Ford as unable to provide critical details of the night of the alleged assault.
The president’s decision to go on the offensive during the Mississippi rally came after days of remaining largely quiet on the matter and even describing Kavanaugh’s accuser as a credible witness.
While Kilmeade suggested he could understand why Trump would speak out harshly against Ford, he does not think it was a smart political move while the FBI conducts a probe into the allegations.
“And he did go after the accuser because we know even the prosecutor from Arizona said there’s holes in the story, the accuser’s story,” he said.
Kilmeade brought up several of the issues Ford has been unable to corroborate.
“We don’t know how she got there,” he said. “We don’t know who she left with. We don’t know who invited her. We don’t know how she knows Brett Kavanaugh. We don’t know what house it took place in. Is that enough to destroy somebody’s career, life and reputation?”
While the “Fox & Friends” host echoed many of Trump’s comments, he said the president “chose to blow it” by publicly attacking Ford.
“The tactic of the president laying low has been lauded by all sides,” Kilmeade said. “Last night he chose to blow it as the FBI is handing in the report as early as to day.”
Trump’s impression of Ford drew some applause from supporters in the crowd, but Kilmeade is among those who believe it could have wider negative repercussions.
“I wonder about the wisdom. As much as the crowd loved it, I wonder about the wisdom tactically of him doing that,” he said.
During Tuesday’s rally, Trump also lamented the toll this confirmation process has taken on Kavanaugh and his family.
“A man’s life is in tatters,” he said. “A man’s life is shattered. His wife is shattered. His daughters, who are beautiful, incredible young kids.”
Republican Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona has also criticized Trump’s rhetoric.
“There’s no time and no place for remarks like that, but to discuss something this sensitive at a political rally is just not right,” he said in an interview Wednesday. “I wish he hadn’t done it, and I just say it’s kind of appalling.”
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