In the wake of divisive comments he made against NFL players who kneel to protest police brutality, President Donald Trump on Tuesday held a joint press conference with Spain’s President Mariano Rajoy. In typical Trump fashion, his off-the-cuff remarks stood out the most.
When asked if he was distracted by his war with the NFL, Trump said he wasn’t preoccupied, he was ashamed.
“To me the NFL situation is a very important situation,” he said, adding that he has “plenty of time on my hands, all I do is work.”
Trump went on to further shame football players who take a knee during the national anthem instead of standing: “It’s called respect for our country. Many people have died. Many people were injured,” Trump said, adding that he’d visited wounded veterans in hospitals. “They were fighting for our country… our flag… our national anthem.”
When asked about North Korea’s assertion that the U.S. had declared war on the rogue nation, Trump said he is considering the “military option,” which would be “devastating for North Korea.”
“He’s acting very badly, he’s saying things that should never be said,” Trump said, referring to the nation’s leader Kim Jong-Un.
Before discussing Korea and the NFL controversy, the president began his remarks in the White House Rose Garden by addressing the crisis in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria, saying “our hearts and prayers” are with the island and U.S. Virgin Islands. Trump said he plans to visit Puerto Rico, followed by a trip to the Virgin Islands.
“The recovery process will be a very, very difficult one. We will get through it together and we will be stronger,” he said, before transitioning to prepared remarks on the United States’ relationship with Spain. He spoke of the “vile terror attack in Spain last month,” and said Americans stand with the European nation in confronting terrorism.