Carson: People ‘Looking’ For Something To Criticize In Trump’s Call To Widow

Yale alumnus Dr. Benjamin Carson, President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, spoke at YaleThursday, Dec. 8 as a guest of the William F. Buckley Jr. Program at Yale. (AP Photo/Stephen Dunn)
Stephen Dunn/FR171426 AP

Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson on Wednesday said some people “were just looking for something to complain about” in President Donald Trump’s remarks to the widow of a U.S. soldier killed in Niger earlier in October.

Asked about Sgt. La David T. Johnson’s family, who criticized Trump’s remarks, Carson said, “I think there were people who were just looking for something to complain about.”

“I mean, if he had said, you know, ‘I’m sorry, this is sure a dark day for you,’ they would have said ‘See, he’s a racist, he said a dark day,'” Carson, who is black, said, apparently referring to Johnson and his widow Myeshia Johnson, who are also black.

Carson made the remarks during an event hosted by the Hill on Wednesday morning, in response to a question posted by the Hill’s editor-in-chief Bob Cusack. Democratic research group American Bridge flagged the remarks to TPM in an email.

“The video clearly shows Secretary Carson channeling Donald Trump and maligning a Gold Star family’s sacrifice,” American Bridge spokesperson Harrell Kirstein told TPM by email. “This is just another example of the lack of sympathy from the Trump Administration for families of American service men and women killed in action.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Esme Cribb is a newswriter for TPM in New York City. She can be found on Twitter @emquiry and reached by email at esme@talkingpointsmemo.com.

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