Trump’s latest attack on a female reporter was absolutely disgusting, yet not surprising
President Trump was delivering an address in Washington this morning about revamping NAFTA and the new deal that’s been struck between the US, Canada, and Mexico. While he waxed lyrical about what a “tremendous deal” and a “historic transaction” it was, it was a remark he made to a female reporter that’s (rightly) getting all kinds of attention.
Cecilia Vega, a senior White House correspondent for ABC News, was the first called on after Trump finished his press conference on trade. But the way in which he called on her was nothing short of dreadful. Trump can be seen pointing into the crowd of reporters and landing on Vega, who he said looked “shocked” that she was selected. And while all the old white men smirked behind him, she got the microphone and tried to say, “I’m not, thank you, Mr. President.”
Instead of respectfully allowing her to ask her question, Trump interrupted her and said, “I know you’re not thinking, you never do.” I believe what he thought he heard her say was, “I’m not thinking,” when she instead said, “I’m not (shocked), thank you,” which is even more evidence of his proclivity for bullying over being a decent human being.
Trump calls on Cecilia Vega of ABC News. He says that she's shocked that he picked her. Then he adds, "That's OK. I know you're not thinking. You never do." (via ABC) pic.twitter.com/FnrIDeyqyN
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) October 1, 2018
Vega, for her part, said, “I’m sorry?” and Trump just mumbled, “Go ahead,” then ultimately refused to answer her question about Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. Understandably, the Twitter responses were swift and harsh:
I might have thrown the mic at him. I've already played the scenario of this out in my head and it doesn't end well for me.— Jesse James Richard (@jessejamesrich) October 1, 2018
WTF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! God I hate this "man".— Alyssa E. (@Alysenve) October 1, 2018
Ah. Some casual misogyny & racism to go with my lunch.— John Edwin Mason (@johnedwinmason) October 1, 2018
Classic, - female pushes back at an inappropriate or just plain untrue fact said be male; male can't handle; male follows up with insult. #everydaysexism— Toni Hargis (@ToniHargis) October 1, 2018
Trump to female reporter: "I know you're not thinking, you never do."
Trump: "She's shocked I picked her, she's in a state of shock."
Vega: I'm not, thank you Mr. President.
Trump: "I know you're not thinking, you never do."
Vega: "I'm sorry?"
Trump: "Go ahead" pic.twitter.com/hhfFHDNSXk
— Lis Power (@LisPower1) October 1, 2018
Did POTUS really just tell @CeciliaVega “I know you’re not thinking you never do”?
— Melissa Francis (@MelissaAFrancis) October 1, 2018
I just watched Trump cut a woman reporter off, then tell her "That's okay, I know you're not thinking. You never do." during his #USMCA presser.
To repeat, the President of the United States just said that to a woman good enough to be in the White House press pool. Disgusting.
— Neale (@AbeFroman) October 1, 2018
This comment is unacceptable and inexcusable. The laughter is unacceptable and inexcusable. The off the cuff nature of this comment is horrifying.— Dina Lewis, CAE (@dinalew) October 1, 2018
Trump was his usual combative self, telling reporters that he considered them to be a wing of the Democratic party and openly admonishing another female reporter, CNN’s Kaitlan Collins, refusing her question while pointing his finger at her to shut up. But what he did to Vega was particularly vile. We’re talking about the president of the United States dismissing a woman who he himself called on and publicly mocking her. We’ve all somehow become numb to his childish diatribes and insults and it’s simply not ok. None of this is ok.
Trump has never downplayed his hatred of the media. He regularly takes swipes at newspapers and reporters as a whole. Who can forget his first tweet on the morning of September 11th this year, ranting about Russian collusion and the media/DOJ instead of sharing thoughts of condolences. And while ABC News has always been on his shit list, snidely mocking one of their reporters — who was simply trying to do her job — is wrong on every possible level.
And while this will likely be chalked up or excused by his followers as “just another example of Trump being Trump,” it’s astounding that we’re in a place where a president can continue to openly mock women, treating them as second class citizens and people take it in stride. When is enough, enough?