‘Character Assassination’

Rep. Frederica Wilson demands apology from John Kelly in Trump phone call feud

U.S. Representative Frederica Wilson speaks at a news conference during a visit by a Congressional delegation to Abuja, as part of efforts by the U.S. to enhance cooperation between both countries in tackling the Boko Haram in Nigeria August 4, 2015. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

U.S. Representative Frederica Wilson of Florida is demanding an apology from White House chief of staff John Kelly, whom she has accused of “character assassination.”

The source of their feud stems back to a story that broke last week, when Wilson told The Washington Post that President Trump had reduced a Gold Star widow to tears during a consolation call. Wilson was with Myeshia Johnson, the widow of Sgt. La David T. Johnson, who was killed along with three other U.S. special soldiers in Niger, when she spoke with Trump.

“[Trump] was almost like joking,” Wilson claimed. “He said, ‘Well, I guess you knew’ — something to the effect that ‘he knew what he was getting into when he signed up, but I guess it hurts anyway.’

“He made her cry,” Wilson added. “When she hung up the phone, she looked at me and said, ‘He didn’t even remember his name.’ That’s the hurting part.”

Trump has denied the claim. And last week, as the Hill reports, Kelly lambasted Wilson during a press conference last week. Kelly claimed he was “stunned” that a member of Congress “would have listened in on that conversation.” He also accused Wilson of falsely taking credit for securing $20 million in funding for an FBI field office in Miami.

“A congresswoman stood up,” he said, “and in a long tradition of empty barrels making the most noise, stood up there in all of that and talked about how she was instrumental in getting the funding for that building.”

Video published by The Sun Sentinel shows that Wilson, who is a close family friend of the fallen soldier’s family, did take credit, among others, for helping pass the legislation that approved the naming of the building, but she did not mention anything about her role in its funding.

Wilson has since noted that the field office “was funded long before I got to Congress.”

In an interview with MSNBC’s AM Joy, she accused Kelly of “character assassination.”

“Not only does he owe me an apology, but he owes an apology to the American people,” she said.

Read more at the The Hill.

Mother of slain soldier says Trump ‘disrespected’ her son and his widow in disturbing consolation call

Gold Star widow releases audio of phone call with Trump

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