WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump on Saturday continued lashing out at the Democratic congresswoman who offered a critical account of his conversation with the widow of a fallen US soldier, calling the congresswoman "wacky."
"I hope the Fake News Media keeps talking about Wacky Congresswoman Wilson in that she, as a representative, is killing the Democrat Party!" Trump tweeted just after 8 a.m. ET, referring to Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Florida.
Trump pressed on with his attacks against Wilson an hour later, re-tweeting posts that suggested without evidence that former President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton "rolled out" Wilson "as a distraction" from an unrelated, years-old controversy involving the Obama administration's approval of Russia's purchase of a controlling stake in a Canadian company with US uranium assets. The company, at one time, included investors who had contributed to the Clinton Foundation.
"The people get what is going on!" Trump tweeted.
The controversy over Trump's call with the widow of Sgt. La David Johnson, who was killed in an ambush in Niger, has roiled on for the better part of a week, often overshadowing questions about the death of Johnson and three other US soldiers who were killed as a result of the ambush.
Wilson, who is close with Johnson's family and was in the car when Trump's call came, was the first to reveal details of the call, saying that Trump said Johnson "knew what he signed up for, but I guess it still hurts." The family member who raised Johnson called Wilson's account of the call "very accurate," and the White House has not refuted that Trump spoke those words.
Instead, White House chief of staff John Kelly, a Gold Star father himself, indicated on Thursday that he advised Trump to offer those words, though he said he was incensed that Wilson had decided to reveal details of what he deemed to be a "sacred" conversation.
Trump said Friday in an interview with Fox Business that he was "very surprised" to hear Wilson's account of the call, insisting the call was "a very nice call" and that he did mention Johnson's name, which Wilson said he did not appear to recall during the phone call.
"Look, I've called many people. And I would think that every one of them appreciated it," Trump said, noting "those are the toughest calls."