John Kelly, Donald Trump’s former chief of staff, expressed strong support for the media and encouraged people to get their news from more than just Fox News. In an apparent contradiction to Trump’s own attacks on the media, Kelly told an audience at a lecture at Drew University that they need to be sure that they’re getting their news from multiple sources.
“You have to be careful about what you are watching and reading because the media has taken sides,” he said, according to Mediaite. “So if you only watch Fox News, because it’s reinforcing what you believe, you are not an informed citizen.”
He went on to support the media, praising the so-called fourth estate as an important part of a free society.
“The media, in my view, and I feel very strongly about this, is not the enemy of the people,” he said. “We need a free media.”
In recent days, Kelly has been openly critical of Trump and Republicans after serving in the White House from July 31, 2017, until the end of 2018, at which point he was replaced by Mick Mulvaney. After leaving, as The Inquisitr previously reported, Kelly said that it was the “least enjoyable” job he had ever worked.
Kelly was critical of the impeachment process, saying that Senate Republicans were holding “half a trial” if they wouldn’t allow witnesses, something they eventually chose to do before acquitting the president. He has also said that Trump is wrong in declaring a national emergency over constructing the border wall.
Kelly also criticized Trump for firing Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman during his lecture at the university in New Jersey. As the New York Post reports, Kelly said that Vindman was behaving honorably when he spoke about the phone call, adding that soldiers are ordered not to follow an illegal order.
On Thursday, Trump responded to Kelly’s criticism.
“When I terminated John Kelly, which I couldn’t do fast enough, he knew full well that he was way over his head. Being Chief of Staff just wasn’t for him,” he said in a tweet.
He added that Kelly can’t keep his “mouth shut” and left with a “whimper.”
Trump continued that Kelly’s wife had said that her husband respected Trump and would never bad mouth him.
Vindman testified against Trump in the House impeachment trial, adding details to the claim that Trump had made an inappropriate request when speaking with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky last year. The conversation was the focus of the impeachment proceeding.