Impeached president Donald Trump on Wednesday first denied, then confirmed (it's a pattern!) that he fled to a secure bunker beneath the White House this past weekend, as Black Lives Matter/George Floyd protests spread, with heavily armed law enforcement assaulting peaceful protesters and credentialed journalists.
Trump today said he went there for an "inspection," rather than out of concern over his safety, which of course is totally legit and why would anyone question that anything he says could maybe not be true.
From the New York Times:
Mr. Trump has been irritated by news reports that he and his family were taken to the bunker while protests flared, and on Wednesday he was asked about the events in an interview with Brian Kilmeade of Fox News Radio.
"Well, it was a false report," Mr. Trump said.
"I wasn't down — I went down during the day, and I was there for a tiny little short period of time, and it was much more for an inspection, there was no problem during the day," he added. He did not say which day.
That contradicted the accounts of other officials, including one with firsthand knowledge, who told The New York Times that the Secret Service had rushed him to the bunker for his safety, not for an inspection, and that it occurred on Friday night, not during the day.
An official familiar with the events said the agents acted after the White House's security status was changes to "red," a warning of a heightened threat, amid the protests.
Mr. Trump's concern about the perception that he was hiding contributed to his decision to walk across Lafayette Square on Monday to a church that was damaged by fire the night before. Law enforcement officers used pepper spray to disperse a crowd of demonstrators and clear the way for his walk.
And when they finished talking about the bunker boy's underground hideyhole, Trump again repeated his toxic lie that former lawmaker turned MSNBC host Joe Scarborough is linked to the death in 2001 of Lori Klausutis, a young woman who worked for him when he was a congressman.
Pres Trump disputes reports he was rushed to the WH bunker Friday night because of nearby protests. On @kilmeade show, he said he went to the bunker during the day on Friday for an inspection and just for "a short period of time." Blames "fake news" for false report.
— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) June 3, 2020
More Trump, on the bunker: "Well, it was a false report. I wasn't down. I went down during the day, and I was there for a tiny, little short period of time. And it was much more for an inspection."
— Felicia Sonmez (@feliciasonmez) June 3, 2020
President Trump tells Brian Kilmeade it was a false report that he was taken to the underground bunker amid protests, though he confirms he did go to the bunker. He says he went in the day and it was "more for an inspection." "I was there for a tiny, short little period of time."
— Kaitlan Collins (@kaitlancollins) June 3, 2020
President Trump adds that he's been down to the bunker "2 or 3 times, all for inspection" (he later said 2.5 times).
Per the President, Secret Service told him "it would be a good time to go down, take a look, because maybe sometime you're going to need it."
— Sara Cook (@saraecook) June 3, 2020
President Trump said "it was a false report" that he was taken to the White House's underground bunker Friday night. He insists it was "more for an inspection."
He added that he's gone down to bunker total of "two and a half" times to "inspect."
— Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) June 3, 2020