Florida Rep. Frederica Wilson, called by Donald Trump as the “wacky” “gift that keeps on giving” demanded an apology from White House Chief of Staff John Kelly Sunday, accusing him of “character assassination” and being “a puppet of the president” after Kelly criticized her for delivering a tone-deaf speech at a dedication ceremony for an FBI field office in Florida – a characterization of events that she has vociferously disputed.
“Not only does he owe me an apology, but he owes an apology to the American people,” Wilson said during an appearance Sunday on MSNBC’s “AM Joy.” The ongoing feud between Wilson and the White House has overshadowed demands by lawmakers for more information about the ambush early this month that left four American green berets dead in Niger, near the border with Mali. The attack was initially described as an Al Qaeda-organized ambush. But new questions have emerged after it was revealed that the body of Sgt. La David Johnson – one of the four men who perished in the incident – was found a mile from where the attack occurred, the Hill reported.
“We had four soldiers who died. They have been buried,” she said. “And we need to know why, and we need to know about the special circumstances surrounding [U.S. Army Sgt.] La David Johnson.”
The feud between Wilson and Trump erupted after Wilson told CNN about a tone-deaf condolence call that Trump made to Johnson’s widow two weeks after his death. Wilson described Trump’s remarks during the call as insensitive and claimed he appeared not to remember Johnson’s name. Trump and Kelly both disputed Wilson’s characterization of the call. Since the scandal broke, another gold star family released a recording of their condolence call from Trump to help rebut claims that Trump was being insensitive.
Kelly was pulled into the feud between Wilson and Trump when he gave an emotional press conference last week railing against Wilson for criticizing his boss, adding that the grieving process of Gold Star families should be “sacred.” During his remarks, Kelly said he was “stunned” that a member of Congress “would have listened in on that conversation.”
“I would have thought that was sacred,” he said.
Kelly also called Wilson an “empty barrel” and suggested she showed her true colors when she took credit for securing “$20 million” in funding for the FBI field office in Miami.
“A congresswoman stood up, 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,” he said.
“And how she took care of her constituents because she got the money, and she just called up President Obama, and on that phone call, he gave the money — the $20 million — to build the building, and she sat down, and we were stunned.”
Wilson responded that funding for the building had been appropriated long before she arrived in Congress, and said the feud between herself and the White House had become “totally personal.” Video published Friday by the Sun Sentinel showed Wilson spent several minutes claiming credit for legislation that named the building for two slain FBI agents, but did not take credit for scrounging up the federal funding.
Trump has repeatedly mocked Wilson on Twitter, referring to her as “Wacky Congresswoman Wilson” and “the gift that keeps on giving.”
Wacky Congresswoman Wilson is the gift that keeps on giving for the Republican Party, a disaster for Dems. You watch her in action & vote R!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 22, 2017
He’s also accused her of “killing the Democratic Party”…
I hope the Fake News Media keeps talking about Wacky Congresswoman Wilson in that she, as a representative, is killing the Democrat Party!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 21, 2017
Watch the entire AM Joy interview below: