By Marisa Schultz, Paul Steinhauser | Fox News
DNC targets hotel following Atlantic article.
Democrats targeted the Trump Hotel in Washington D.C. Friday night for a campaign stunt to draw attention to a story from The Atlantic that alleged President Trump disparaged fallen American soldiers.
The Democratic National Committee (DNC) ran projections on the exterior of the downtown D.C. hotel from about 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. without incident, according to the DNC.
SOURCES DISPUTE CLAIM TRUMP NIXED VISIT TO MILITARY CEMETERY OVER DISDAIN FOR SLAIN VETERANS, BUT BACK UP PARTS OF ATLANTIC REPORT
The messages aglow at the hotel read: “Trump Disrespected Our Troops” and “Our Troops Deserve Better Than Trump.”
Trump and the White House have vehemently denied the Atlantic article and slammed the claims as “a hoax.”
Vice President Pence also called the report “absurd” on FOX Business on Friday.
“Any suggestion that this president doesn’t love and respect the men and women of our armed forces and their families is absurd on its face to me because I have walked the grounds of Arlington National Cemetary side-by-side with President Donald Trump,” Pence said.
WHITE HOUSE ATTACKS ‘FALSE’ ATLANTIC STORY ABOUT TRUMP INSULTING DEAD SOLDIERS ‘WHAT A DISGRACE’
But former vice president Joe Biden and Democrats have seized on the report that alleged Trump has disrespected soldiers who have died.
“Trump doesn’t know what it means to sacrifice for our country, and he clearly has no respect for the brave men and women who have,” DNC War Room senior spokesperson and advisor Lily Adams told Fox News. “Veterans and fallen soldiers should be venerated, not insulted and mocked by anyone, especially the Commander-in-Chief. Our nation’s heroes deserve better than Trump.”
Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh called the DNC stunt a “pathetic” effort to distract from Biden’s standing in the polls and the Obama-Biden administration record on veterans.
“It’s pretty pathetic that Joe Biden and the Democrats have now gone all-in on radical, leftist, Antifa-style tactics because they know Biden is plummeting in the polls,” Murtaugh told Fox News, while again refuting the “bogus” Atlantic reporting.
Murtaugh continued: “Biden is desperate to distract from his true record of decimating the U.S. military and ignoring the horrendous scandals of neglect of veterans at VA hospitals while he was vice president – messes that President Trump had to clean up.”
Sources who spoke to Fox News refuted one of the most salacious allegations of the Atlantic report that Trump described the war dead buried at Aisne-Marne American Cemetery in France as “suckers” and “losers” but confirmed he has made disparaging comments about veterans in the past.
Images projected on Trump Hotel in Washington D.C. on Friday, Sept. 4, 2020, by the Democratic National Committee. Photo from DNC.
Two sources told Fox News that Trump canceled a planned 2018 trip to the cemetery for American war dead in France because of the weather and not because of disdain for the slain soldiers who are buried there or concern about how the weather would affect his hair — despite the report from The Atlantic making that claim.
Two sources who were on the trip in question with Trump refuted the main thesis of The Atlantic’s reporting — that Trump canceled a trip to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery, which is at the site of Belleau Wood, an important World War I battle — because he believed the dead soldiers to be “losers.”
Both sources also noted that Trump was not worried about how the weather would affect his hair, as The Atlantic reported. Trump the next day stood in the rain for an hour at a different event.
But two former senior Trump Administration officials confirmed that Trump has disparaged veterans in the past. One said Trump had used the term “sucker” to refer to Americans who fought in Vietnam, not the war dead at buried at Aisne-Marne.
The former official heard the president say about American veterans: “‘What’s in it for them? They don’t make any money.’ It was a character flaw of the President. He could not understand why someone would die for their country, not worth it.”
According to the former official, Trump also had said of the Vietnam War: “It was a stupid war. Anyone who went was a sucker.”
A source told Fox News that Trump also didn’t want “wounded” veterans included in a July 4th military parade, saying “that’s not a good look” and “Americans don’t like that.”
Trump tweeted again Saturday his denial of the story and said the allegations are an attempt by the “Radical Far Left” to prevent him from winning reelection.
“You work so hard for the military, from completely rebuilding a depleted mess that was left by OBiden, to fixing a broken V.A. and fighting for large scale military pay raises, and then a slimeball reporter, maybe working with disgruntled people, makes up such a horrible charge,” Trump tweeted. “This reminds me of the Dirty Dossier, which was pushed hard by John McCain, & then with a thud turned out to be a total fraud.”
Biden’s campaign said Trump’s denial just can’t be trusted.
“Donald Trump has made gaslighting his hallmark,” said Biden campaign’s Andrew Bates. “Fact-checkers have caught him telling over 20,000 lies to the American people while in office alone. Not only is it a quantifiable reality that Donald Trump is the most dishonest president in American history, but he’s also one of the least credible human beings alive.”
Fox News’ Jennifer Griffin, John Roberts, Tyler Olson and Jacqui Heinric contributed to this report.
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