- President Donald Trump on Wednesday said it’s “false” he was taken to a White House bunker for his safety amid protests in Washington, DC, last Friday.
- Trump said he was in the bunker “more for an inspection.”
- “I was there for a tiny, short little period of time,” Trump said. “They said it would be a good time to go down and take a look because maybe sometime you’re going to need it.”
- Multiple major news outlets reported that Trump was taken to the secure bunker, which the president said he’s only been in “two and a half times,” for his safety.
- Trump was reportedly so enraged by the bunker reports that it prompted his controversial photo-op at a church near the White House on Monday, which involved law enforcement violently clearing a path for him.
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President Donald Trump on Wednesday said he was inspecting a White House bunker, not hiding in it, during massive protests in the nation’s capital on Friday.
Despite widespread reporting to the contrary, Trump in a Fox News Radio interview with Brian Kilmeade said that his visit to the bunker was during the day, not the night, and “much more for an inspection.”
“I was there for a tiny, short little period of time,” Trump said. “They said it would be a good time to go down and take a look because maybe sometime you’re going to need it.”
The president said he’s been down in the secure bunker “two and a half times” for various “things” pertaining to inspections.
Trump says he went to the White House bunker for inspection:
“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…I’ve gone down two or three times, all for inspection." pic.twitter.com/RFPi4aAsfX
— JM Rieger (@RiegerReport) June 3, 2020
There were huge protests in Washington, DC, on Friday, which included demonstrations outside of the White House. The US has been consumed by protests over the past week following the death of George Floyd while in custody of Minneapolis police.
A white Minneapolis police officer knelt on Floyd’s neck for eight minutes, which ultimately killed him. Floyd, a black man, was unarmed.
Multiple outlets, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, CNN, and the Washington Post, reported that Trump was taken to a secure White House bunker on Friday night. The Secret Service has protocols for the president’s security. But the bunker has rarely been used, if at all, since the September 11, 2001, terror attacks, per the Times.
The president and his family were “have been shaken by the size and venom of the crowds,” a Republican close to the White House told the Associated Press, and Trump has told advisers he’s concerned about his safety.
Trump was reportedly enraged over the bunker coverage, fearing it made him look weak, and it prompted his controversial photo-op in front of a church near the White House on Monday. Law enforcement violently dispersed a crowd of peaceful protesters to clear the way for Trump’s photo-op, in a move that drew comparisons with authoritarian regimes.
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