A defiant President Donald Trump on Wednesday delivered an angry and defensive press conference in which he continued to insist that he was the big winner in this week’s midterm elections that saw his party swept out of power in the House of Representatives.
During the press conference, Trump regularly sparred with reporters, engaged in nonsensical arguments, and even attacked members of his own party for not doing enough to “embrace” him during their campaigns.
1.) Trump calls CNN’s Jim Acosta a “rude, terrible person. After Acosta tried to ask Trump multiple questions, the president cut him off and tried to move on.
When Acosta refused to be quiet, Trump melted down.
“CNN should be ashamed of itself having you working for them,” he said. “You are a rude, terrible person. You shouldn’t be working for CNN.”
2.) Trump tells reporter April Ryan to “sit down.” As Ryan tried to ask Trump a question, Trump accused her of interrupting him.
“Sit down, I didn’t call you!” he snapped at her.
After Ryan again tried to ask a question, Trump lashed out at her.
“Excuse me, I’m not responding to you!” he thundered.
3.) Trump attacks Republican lawmakers who lost elections. During one particularly stunning moment, Trump almost celebrated members of his own party going down in defeat on Tuesday on the grounds that they didn’t “embrace” him enough.
Included among Trump’s list of disloyal lawmakers were defeated Reps. Mike Coffman (R-CO), Mia Love (R-UT) and Barbara Comstock (R-VA).
The rant against members of his own party drew a furious reaction from retiring Rep. Ryan Costello (R-PA), who accused Trump of “pissing” on Republicans.
4.) Trump accuses a reporter of being “racist” for questioning his embrace of “nationalism.” PBS reporter Yamiche Alcindor brought up the troubling historical connotations of the word “nationalist” — a label that Trump has embraced — and told him that it has also been a label embraced by neo-Nazis.
Trump responded by falsely claiming he has sky-high approval ratings among black voters.
“Why do I have the highest poll numbers ever with African-Americans?” Trump retorted. “My highest poll numbers — that’s such a racist question, honestly. I know you have it written down and you’re going to tell me — that’s a racist question.”
5.) Trump offers nonsensical responses to questions of what he can do to unite the country. Multiple reporters asked him what his plans were for bringing the country together and the president touted his good relationship with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, as well as the purported damage his tariffs have been doing to China’s economy.
“[Those are] taxes that China is paying for us,” the president said of his tariffs, although the vast majority of economists say those taxes are being passed on to American consumers.
6.) Trump shouts down questions about his standing among women voters. Exit polls showed that women played a decisive role in handing the GOP a massive defeat in House races Tuesday — but Trump shouted down a reporter who tried to ask him about it by insisting that he’s broadly popular among both men and women.
“I was very well-received by this great country,” he insisted.