Fox News host and Donald Trump fangirl Harris Faulkner didn’t just dismiss Trump’s furtive, hour-long meeting with Vladimir Putin as two chaps “lingering over dinner.” No, Faulkner went the extra mile to suggest that suspicions are mere partisan jealousy of Trump’s awesome deal-making skills.
On the Outnumbered show today, guest Chris Stirewalt feigned even-handedness by blasting the administration’s communications about Trump’s newly-discovered hour-long chat with Vladimir Putin with only a Russian translator on hand. But more significantly, he dismissed the president’s secret discussion with a U.S. adversary as nothing to care about:
STIREWALT: I will tell you this. If [the Russia scandal] is overblown, if this is, as the former speaker said, nothing and it’s not there then it will be the saddest story of a mishandled scandal in the history of mishandling scandals.
You watched how the press responded – so, after dinner at the G20, the president, who saw that his wife was seated next to Vladimir Putin, went over there and he took her seat and he sat down and they lingered over dinner for an hour. The Washington Post reports this as “Secret Meeting!” Well, it wasn’t a secret meeting. … It was a lengthy lingering over dinner together in a public place.
But the question for the White House is, why not let that be known so that it doesn’t get found out later?
If you ask me, “lingering after dinner” suggests 10-15 minutes among companions, not an hour-long conversation between two world leaders who are adversaries. Furthermore, there are plenty of things to be concerned about in the discussion, including this: what was it that Trump wanted to discuss with Putin that he didn’t want to discuss in front of our own secretary of state? Trump had just concluded a very lengthy meeting with Putin that had included U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. Yet Trump initiated this later discussion with Putin outside of Tillerson’s presence.
Cohost Meghan McCain expressed the only concern about the meeting during this segment. She asked if the “sticking point” wasn’t the fact that Trump used a Russian translator and not an American translator. At that point, Stirewalt immediately acknowledged, “They did it wrong.”
So it was not just a matter of “lingering over dinner.” But nobody lingered over that ramification.
FAULKNER: Democrats have just got to be jealous over this. They’re just – because, yeah, OK, they sat and lingered over dinner. This is how the president gets his deals done. He had a steak and succotash, he’s having a lunch right now (with GOP senators).
What I’m saying is, I mean, the interpreter not withstanding ‘cause that’s a problem. I mean, if you don’t have our people at the table represented in a way in which everybody understands every word that’s being said, without that. But I do find it interesting that there’s a problem for Democrats every time something like this happens going forward that potentially is business being done.
Sure, potentially business was being done. And it was potentially business that benefits Trump, not the U.S. It was also potentially something much worse given Russia’s interference in our 2016 election and questions about the Trump campaign’s involvement in that.
But if Faulkner really thinks Trump was working on some kind of great deal, she kept to herself what kind of deal that was. Because so far, we have heard crickets about any deal. Other than Trump's plan to create a "cyber security unit" with Russia that was so widely-ridiculed he had to back off.
Watch Faulkner’s excuse away potential treason above, from the July 19, 2017 Outnumbered.
Crossposted at News Hounds.
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