'Is the president aware that this is about police-involved shootings?': Sarah Huckabee Sanders grilled over Trump's snub of Eagles

  • White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders had a heated exchange with reporter April Ryan at Tuesday’s press briefing in relation to the Trump administration’s decision to cancel an event for the Philadelphia Eagles meant to celebrate their Super Bowl victory.
  • “Is the president aware that this is about police-involved shootings and not about disrespecting the flag?” Ryan asked Sanders.
  • The NFL recently decided teams will be fined if their players kneel during the national anthem, a move that was applauded by President Donald Trump.

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders had a heated exchange with reporter April Ryan at Tuesday’s press briefing in relation to the Trump administration’s decision to cancel an event for the Philadelphia Eagles meant to celebrate their Super Bowl victory.

Sanders was questioned by several reporters about this decision, and she accused the Eagles of pulling a “political stunt” by “offering” only “a tiny handful of representatives” to attend the ceremony.

Only about 10 to 12 Eagles players reportedly planned on attending given that many members of the team take issue with President Donald Trump and his rhetoric. The president has been at odds with many NFL players over the national anthem protests, which are meant to bring attention to police brutality.

Ryan pressed Sanders for more information on the president’s position on this issue, asking her if the president was aware the players are protesting police-involved shootings.

“Is the president aware that this is about police-involved shootings and not about disrespecting the flag?” Ryan asked.

Sanders attempted to ignore Ryan’s question and move on to another reporter, but Ryan persisted.

Sanders then accused Ryan of being rude and went on to say, “The president has made his position crystal clear on this topic. He feels strongly that standing for the national anthem is something that we should do, something that matters to what makes our country special, and unique, and what sets us apart.

“He’s not going to waver on that and he’s not going to apologise for it,” Sanders added.

Trump has called players who participate in the national anthem protests “sons of b—–s” and has urged NFL owners to punish players who kneel or stay in the locker room during the anthem.

The NFL recently decided teams will be fined if their players kneel during the anthem, a move that was applauded by Trump.

Trump reiterated his stance on the anthem protests via Twitter on Monday night, tweeting, “The Philadelphia Eagles Football Team was invited to the White House. Unfortunately, only a small number of players decided to come, and we canceled the event. Staying in the Locker Room for the playing of our National Anthem is as disrespectful to our country as kneeling. Sorry!”

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