During Monday’s “Anderson Cooper 360,” network chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta discussed President Donald Trump’s handling of the unrest in the United States in the wake of George Floyd’s recent death while in the custody of Minneapolis police custody.
Acosta highlighted Trump’s advisers are “concerned” the president is not handling the protests, some of which have turned violent, well. He also suggested Trump would “have an out of body experience” if he were to give an empathetic speech on race relations to help quell some of the unrest around the country.
“[S]ome the president’s own advisers are concerned he’s not handling this very well,” Acosta stated. “I talked to an adviser this evening who conceded he’s not handled this perfectly.
“Is the president going to speak at all about race relations in this country, about systemic racism, about any of the issues raised by thousands and thousands and tens of thousands of people in the streets for day after day after day?” host Anderson Cooper asked.
Acosta replied, “They have been talking about this inside the president’s political team. It is an open question as to whether or not he’s going to deliver that kind of speech. The White House press secretary, Kayleigh McEnany, at the briefing earlier today said that the president has already touched on these themes. That was an indication that perhaps he’s not going to do this. But I think there is no doubt, Anderson, at this point the president has left a lot unsaid at this point that he could say to the American people to try to bring this country together in some way, shape or form. Obviously, he’s not the great uniter. He’s … in a lot of ways the great divider.
“But at this point, Anderson, he seems more interesting in taking the political potshots than doing anything close to uniting the country right now,” he added.
Cooper emphasized, “First, they face a couple of problems. One, if the president speaks extemporaneously on this, that would likely be a disaster because we have seen what he does when he speaks extemporaneously. Number two, I’m not clear that the White House has anybody who could write a speech for this president on the topic of racism in America. I don’t know that they have anybody who could actually write that speech.”
“That’s right,” Acosta agreed. “And if you look at who would be doing the writing of that speech, it would be somebody like Stephen Miller who has been one of his chief bomb-throwers since the 2016 campaign, and so you’re missing a couple of components there. Not only does he lack the speechwriters to put together a speech like that, Anderson … the president himself does not seem in the mood to deliver that kind of speech right now. And when you talk to his advisers both inside and outside the White House, they will acknowledge he’s not good at the Oval Office address, he’s not good at one of those primetime addresses to the country.”
“He would have to have an out-of-body experience to deliver that kind of speech you’re talking about,” he later added.
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