Presidential counselor Kellyanne Conway would not say that she endorses President Donald Trump's tweets attacking MSNBC "Morning Joe" hosts Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough, but she does endorse his "right to fight back" against attacks from the media.
"I didn't say I endorsed his attacks; I never said that," Conway told ABC's "Good Morning America" anchor George Stephanopoulos.
"What I said was, I endorse his ability to fight back when he is attacked."
Trump, she also said, "normally does not draw first blood," but is a "counter-puncher."
"I endorse the president's right to fight back when he is being mercilessly attacked and when the airwaves are filled with raw sewage about him and his fitness for office," she said.
"There is no good that comes out of people attacking the president's physical and mental states on national television every day to the exclusion of connecting Americans with information they need."
Trump, in a pair of tweets Thursday morning, referred to the cable news hosts as "low I.Q. Crazy Mika" and "Psycho Joe" and claimed he refused Brzezinski and Scarborough's requests to join him while at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida, saying Brzezinski was "bleeding badly" from a facelift.
Conway told Stephanopoulos that the press covers attacks against Trump's "physical and mental states on national television every day" and does not connect Americans with information they need on healthcare and other vital news.
"Bottom line, I endorse his ability to connect on social media with Americans and I endorse, as the first lady has said, him firing back when he is being mercilessly attacked," Conway said.
"The good I hope comes out of this is that we change the conversation; that respect for the office of the president and its current occupant are intact and that we have a full conversation on policy."
Stephanopoulos pointed out that the conversation would not be about the tweets if Trump hadn't posted them, but she shot back that "respectfully" he also would not be talking about tax reform "because it was talked about for less than a minute on all the networks for a five-week period."
"You would not be talking about jobs," she continued. "You keep interrupting. Particularly women who tune in to these shows to get information about what's going on for them. This is somebody who is trying to get those millions of women who lack healthcare coverage."
Conway also said the coverage and criticism of Trump is not fair, because she works in the White House with him and she sees Trump as a person who regularly invites in Obamacare victims, people who have lost their children to illegal immigrants, and people working on energy improvements.
"Nobody focuses on all the good he does," Conway said. "The president sent out about roughly 160 tweets in the month of June, 10 or so of them were about policy, were about bilateral meetings with heads of state and all the things he's doing to help the American people. It gets very little coverage."
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