White House spokesperson Hogan Gidley became visibly agitated on Tuesday when Fox News host Melissa Francis brought up what she called a “somewhat veiled jab” from former President Barack Obama following the pair of mass shootings that have rocked the nation over these past few days.
“We should soundly reject language coming out of the mouths of any of our leaders that feeds a climate of fear and hatred or normalizes racist sentiments,” Obama wrote, “leaders who demonize those who don't look like us, or suggest that other people, including immigrants, threaten our way of life, or refer to other people as sub-human, or imply that America belongs to just one certain type of people.”
Though he didn’t mention President Donald Trump by name, Gidley could only assume that those words referred to his boss.
“If only Barack Obama were in a place to make a difference at some point in his life,” Gidley said, sarcastically. “Oh, wait a minute, he was the president of the United States.”
“For him to interject himself into this conversation, this debate, at this point, it’s his right to do it,” he continued. “But the fact is, Donald Trump is the president of all Americans. He’s trying to move this country forward, and comments like that take us backward and take us to a dark place that we never want to be and we never want to visit again.”
During an appearance earlier in the day on Fox & Friends, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway took a similar stab at Obama, saying, “No one blamed him for Newtown, Connecticut., and he had his opportunity to go heal the nation.”
Even Trump himself couldn’t help but respond to Obama’s general condemnation of racism on Twitter, taking it all too personally.
Paraphrasing Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade, Trump tweeted, “‘Did George Bush ever condemn President Obama after Sandy Hook. President Obama had 32 mass shootings during his reign. Not many people said Obama is out of Control. Mass shootings were happening before the President even thought about running for Pres.’”