Judge Neil Gorsuch, who was recently nominated by President Donald Trump to the U.S. Supreme Court, criticized the president on Feb. 8 for attacking federal judge James Robart. On Feb. 9, controversy erupted when Trump went on Twitter to disparage the CNN coverage of the story as "fake news" (video below).
On Feb. 3, Robart had placed a temporary injunction against Trump's travel ban on seven majority-Muslim nations.Trump referred to Robart as a "so-called judge" in a tweet on Feb. 4. Trump also suggested that any terrorist attack by an immigrant would be the fault of the judge, notes Politico.
Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut met with Gorsuch on Feb. 8, and spilled the beans on Feb. 9:
My strong hope is that he will be more vehement publicly. He certainly expressed to me that he is disheartened by the demoralizing and abhorrent comments made by President Trump about the judiciary, but I will be asking for more specific and forthcoming responses to those kinds of questions before I determine how I will vote.
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Using Twitter, Trump attacked Blumenthal for not fighting in Vietnam, which Trump himself did not do: "Sen. Richard Blumenthal, who never fought in Vietnam when he said for years he had (major lie), now misrepresents what Judge Gorsuch told him?"
A spokesman for Gorsuch confirmed the comments on Feb. 9.
After Blumenthal appeared with CNN host Chris Cuomo that morning, Trump attacked Cuomo on Twitter: "Chris Cuomo, in his interview with Sen. Blumenthal, never asked him about his long-term lie about his brave 'service' in Vietnam. FAKE NEWS!"
However, Cuomo noted that later in the day, he did ask Blumenthal about his military record:
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The president, with all due respect, is once again off on the facts. And that's not something that any of us have any desire to say on a regular basis, but it keeps being true.
"Fake news" is the worst thing that you can call a journalist, it's like an ethnic disparagement. We all have these ugly words for people, that's the one for journalists. And David, [Trump] just keeps doubling down when the facts don't favor his position.