After moving the goal posts on President Trump’s Hurricane Harvey response on Thursday, on Friday’s CBS This Morning, correspondent Major Garrett doubled down on his attack on the commander-in-chief’s visit to Texas. Noting Vice President Mike Pence touring the storm damage on Wednesday, Garrett sneered: “Mr. Trump was cheered, but kept his distance from suffering and devastation, while his Vice President did exactly the opposite.”
Moments later, Garrett again used Pence’s visit as a cudgel to bash Trump: “Unlike President Trump, the Vice President hugged the afflicted, posed with volunteers, and cleared branches from a front yard of the Narro family, who wept while they watched.” “Critics said Mr. Trump failed to meet with victims, mention the loss of life, or see devastation up close,” he added.
Observing that “presidents are graded on compassion,” Garrett touted how “Bill Clinton tended to shine in moments of tragedy” while George W. Bush overcame “his initial distance from Hurricane Katrina” when he “got up close and embraced the victims.” “And President Obama drew praise even from Republicans for his prompt response in New Jersey to Superstorm Sandy,” the reporter hailed.
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Wrapping up the report, Garrett did mention that the President was planning to donate $1 million of his own money to storm relief. However, the correspondent seemed unimpressed: “Whether that comes from his foundation or business accounts, [White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee] Sanders could not say.”
At least co-host Gayle King was willing to applaud Trump’s generosity: “That one million dollar donation will be greatly appreciated.”
The biased segment was brought to viewers by Toyota, Advil, and State Farm.
Here is a full transcript of the September 1 report:
7:12 AM ET
VLADIMIR DUTHIERS: President Trump will return to Texas tomorrow to visit Houston and other areas hit hard by Harvey. The President was criticized after his first trip for not visiting victims in the storm-ravaged areas. Vice President Mike Pence did meet with victims when he went to Texas yesterday. He cleared storm debris at a home in Rockport and viewed the damage from a military aircraft. Major Garrett is at the White House. Major, good morning.
MAJOR GARRETT: Good morning, as is so often the case with this presidency, President Trump and Vice President Pence were a study in contrast in their trips to Texas responding to Hurricane Harvey. Mr. Trump was cheered, but kept his distance from suffering and devastation, while his Vice President did exactly the opposite.
[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Facing the Aftermath; Vice President Vows to Help During Visit to Hard-Hit Areas]
MIKE PENCE: President Trump sent us here to say we are with you.
GARRETT: Vice President pence toured a heavily damaged neighborhood in Rockport and consoled residents at a church gutted by Hurricane Harvey.
PENCE: We will be here every day until this city and this state and this region rebuild bigger and better than ever before.
[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]
GARRETT: Unlike President Trump, the Vice President hugged the afflicted, posed with volunteers, and cleared branches from a front yard of the Narro family, who wept while they watched.
PENCE: It’s a long way to go. Not months, but it’s years.
GARRETT: President Trump’s to Corpus Christi and Austin was far less intimate.
DONALD TRUMP: What a crowd, what a turnout.
GARRETT: Critics said Mr. Trump failed to meet with victims, mention the loss of life, or see devastation up close. In the modern era presidents are graded on compassion. Bill Clinton tended to shine in moments of tragedy. George W. Bush, faulted for his initial distance from Hurricane Katrina, later got up close and embraced the victims. And President Obama drew praise even from Republicans for his prompt response in New Jersey to Superstorm Sandy. The Vice President made a point of saying Mr. Trump would be returning to Texas on Saturday.
PENCE: President Trump often reminds us that we are one American family. That when one hurts, we all hurt.
GARRETT: Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House Press Secretary, said the President will donate one million dollars to hurricane relief efforts. Whether that comes from his foundation or business accounts, Sanders could not say. The President already donates his presidential salary to other charities. Gayle?
GAYLE KING: That one million dollar donation will be greatly appreciated. Thank you very much, Major.