Donald Trump has claimed that he has no time for watching television, but that did not appear to be the case on Friday when the president tweeted a clarification about his alleged “sh**hole countries” comment just minutes after Fox & Friends suggested he should.
The controversy goes back to comments Trump allegedly made in a meeting with lawmakers regarding immigration. In the meeting, Trump reportedly disparaged Haiti and African nations as “sh**hole countries” and wondered aloud why people from there were immigrating to the United States. Trump also reportedly stated that he wished more people from Norway — a nearly all-white nation — were not immigrating instead.
The remarks, which NPR noted were confirmed by Senator Dick Durbin, drew immediate controversy and allegations that Donald Trump is a racist.
On Friday morning, Trump responded — just minutes after the hosts of his favorite morning show, Fox & Friends, suggested that he should. Despite an earlier statement from the White House that did not deny Trump used the term “sh**hole countries” to refer to Haiti and African nations, the president denied using such language on Friday.
As The Hill noted, Trump’s timing appeared to be heavily influenced by Fox & Friends. Just after 7 a.m., host Brian Kilmeade said that Trump “made a mistake making those comments, no question.”
Kilmeade then suggested that Donald Trump address the alleged comments.
“Not positive, not going to move this story forward, I think he should walk it back at some point,” Kilmeade said.
This is not the first time that Trump has raised an issue on Twitter shortly after it was addressed on Fox & Friends. That was on display just one day prior, the Chicago Tribune noted, as Fox & Friends ran a segment critical of the FISA surveillance program and saying it would be a bad idea to reauthorize it.
Even though the White House stance is officially in support of FISA and its reauthorization, Trump took to Twitter shortly after the Fox & Friends segment and attacked FISA.
“‘House votes on controversial FISA ACT today. This is the act that may have been used, with the help of the discredited and phony Dossier, to so badly surveil and abuse the Trump Campaign by the previous administration and others?” he wrote.
A previous report claimed that Donald Trump watches up to eight hours of television a day, and is particularly obsessed with Fox News. As The Hill noted, Trump has denied these reports, saying he doesn’t watch much television, “primarily because of documents.”