Donald Trump used his favorite medium on Wednesday morning to deny an explosive claim made by Rep. Frederica Wilson,(D-FL), who stated Trump told a fallen soldier’s wife that he “knew what he signed up for.”
Wilson told a pool of reporters that she was outraged over comments she overheard between Trump and Army Sgt. La David Johnson‘s widow, Myeshia Johnson, as they traveled to Miami to meet Johnson’s body.
Trump tweeted in the early morning hours, accusing Rep. Wilson of complete fabrication. “Democrat Congresswoman totally fabricated what I said to the wife of a soldier who died in action (and I have proof). Sad!” he wrote.
Later, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the president did not in fact tape the conversation.
Rep. Wilson quickly fired back at the president to stand by her claim on Twitter.”I stand my account of the call with @realDonaldTrump and was not the only one who heard and was dismayed by his insensitive remarks,” she wrote.
She doubled down during an interview with CNN:
Rep. Wilson, Johnson’s congressional district representative, helped the family organize a GoFundMe campaign to handle funeral costs. Supporters have donated over $300,000 as of Wednesday. Sgt. Johnson was one of four soldiers killed in Niger earlier this month during a reconnaissance control post, USA Today reports. The couple share 2 young children; Myeisha is currently six months pregnant.
Johnson’s mother, Cowanda Jones-Johnson, confirmed her daughter and Rep. Wilson’s story, telling the Washington Post that she was there during the now-infamous call from the White House.
“President Trump did disrespect my son and my daughter and also me and my husband,” Jones-Johnson told the Post.
Johnson was part of a group of green berets who killed by ISIS-affiliated militants during an October 4th, ambush. Two others were also injured in the attack. Their deaths have lead to substantive questions surrounding whether or not the soldiers received adequate protection, preparation, and rescue response timing.
Wilson told reporters that Johnson was very upset after the call and took issue that the president did not know her husband’s name.
“Everyone knows when you go to war you could possibly not come back alive. But you don’t remind a grieving widow of that. It’s so insensitive,” Wilson said.
“I asked them to give me the phone because I wanted to speak with” Trump, Wilson told CNN. “And I was going to curse him out.” A service member denied her request, she said.
According to a report from Politico Wednesday, the White House’s National Security Council drafted a sympathy statement for Trump to deliver after the soldiers’ death, but he never issued it.
Yesterday former attorney general Eric Holder blasted Trump over the false accusation that Barack Obama never called the families of fallen soldiers.
SOURCE: USA Today