McEnany branded hypocrite for telling Biden words can inflame violence as president comments on Chauvin trial

Graig Graziosi
·4-min read
Kayleigh McEnany speaks to the press on July 16, 2020, in the Brady Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, DC (AFP via Getty Images)
Kayleigh McEnany speaks to the press on July 16, 2020, in the Brady Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, DC (AFP via Getty Images)

Former White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany, now in her role as a host at Fox News, issued a condemnation of President Joe Biden for weighing in on the murder trial of former Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin, despite her former boss, Donald Trump, frequently offering his opinion on ongoing legal matters.

Closing arguments in the trial ended on Monday, and the jury was sequestered to deliberate on a verdict. Mr Biden then said that he was praying they reach the “right verdict”, which Ms McEnany apparently found offensive.

"I'm glad that he at least waited until the jury was sequestered," Ms McEnany ranted. “But I think that the country is such a tinderbox right now, especially Minneapolis. There's so much hurt, so much pain.”

“And I think it's the role of the president of the United States to stay back, to not inflame the tensions. I think he should have just reserved comment and said he's praying for the family as we all are.”

Ms McEnany's newfound sense of caution and empathy stand in stark contrast to her opinions during her time as Mr Trump's mouthpiece.

For example, Mr Trump defended Kyle Rittenhouse, who shot and killed two protesters during racial justice protests last year, and has been charged with two charges of first degree homicide and one count of attempted homicide, among others.

“He was trying to get away from them, I guess, it looks like,” Mr Trump said at the time. “I guess he was in very big trouble. He probably would have been killed.”

When it came to avoiding lighting tinderboxes, Mr Trump has a less than stellar record.

When asked to denounce the Proud Boys, an extremist alt-right gang that has been classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Centre, Mr Trump told them to “stand back and stand by”.

He also refused to denounce the QAnon movement, based around a conspiracy theory that, among other outlandish ideas, wants to see Democrats, celebrities, and insufficiently conservative Republicans rounded up and either imprisoned or executed.

He often claimed ignorance of the movement, but called them people who “loved” America.

Members of both the Proud Boys and the QAnon conspiracy movement were among those who attacked the US Capitol on 6 January.

Which is another point at which Mr Trump's comments led to violence; it was Mr Trump who told the crowds on 6 January to "take a walk down the street" to the Capitol, which preceded the insurrection.

Numerous Capitol rioters who have since been arrested have claimed that they attacked the building on Mr Trump's orders.

According to ABC News, more than a dozen of the arrested rioters have said their attack on the Capitol was in direct response to their perceived orders from Mr Trump.

In the months preceding and following the 2020 US election, Mr Trump insisted that the election had been stolen and questioned – without evidence – US election security.

Mr Trump was not exactly a calming force during the protests that followed George Floyd's death, either.

During the demonstrations, he told governors to “dominate” protesters or else he would send in federal officers to quell protests, a promise he followed through on, resulting in some of the most violent and unprecedented anti-free speech actions taken by the government since the Vietnam anti-war protests.

“If you don’t dominate your city and your state, they’re going to walk away with you,” Mr Trump said. “In Washington we’re going to do something people haven’t seen before.”

Critics branded Ms McEnany a hypocrite for her comments.

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