CNN host Michael Smerconish lambasted Donald Trump and scolded law enforcement officials on Saturday for applauding the president’s attacks on the media during his Friday speech at an FBI academy graduation ceremony.
On Friday, while delivering a speech at the FBI National Graduation Academy, Trump slammed the federal law enforcement bureau, stating that 10 percent of the agents “are not great people.” Minutes later, the bombastic president took aim at what he calls the “fake news,” members of the media there recording his remarks, prompting applause and laughter from the audience of graduates and family members.
“The president again violated the time and place rule that many of our parents instill in us,” Smerconish said. “We come to expect this from him. Equally troubling is the laughter and the applause. This cannot be the new normal.”
Smerconish pointed to Trump’s similar appearance at the CIA headquarters in January where he attacked a specific reporter as dishonest.
The CNN host said Trump made a mistake in treating both events like campaign rallies, and called the reactions by both audiences of law enforcement officials “reprehensible.”
“The intel and law enforcement communities need to remain above politics, and to be perceived as beyond reproach. And when they feed on the president’s overly political lines, they cause a lack of confidence in their own nonpartisanship,” Smerconish added.
An official said at the time that the majority of the cheering at Trump’s CIA speech was coming from the nearly 40 people invited personally by Trump, Vice President Pence, and CIA Director Mike Pompeo, CBS reported.
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