White House counselor Kellyanne Conway on Sunday suggested that President Donald Trump defended accused wife beater Rob Porter because the charges seemed unbelievable.
During an interview on CNN's State of the Union, host Jake Tapper noted that Trump spoke in defense of Porter and his chief of staff, John Kelly, called the White House staffer a "man of honor" after two ex-wives (and an ex-girlfriend, who has not come forward publicly) came forward to alleged domestic abuse.
Conway argued that Trump made his remarks before disturbing photos emerged of one of Porter's ex-wives with a black eye.
"A week ago I had no reason to believe that had ever happened," she explained. "I have every reason to believe -- you and I disagree on different issues, Jake -- I have every reason to believe that you're a loving, supportive husband. And it would be very hard for me to see otherwise."
"But if I saw it, I would have to realize, this is not the Jake Tapper I know," Conway added. "So, we do give people the benefit of the doubt."
Leaving aside that domestic violence abusers rely on that kind of willful blindness to avoid consequences, the timeline that Conway claims is a little off. Porter's domestic abuse allegations have been known for many months and were ostensibly the reason that Porter had not yet gotten security clearance. And yet the Trump administration did nothing until the allegations were made public.