Resurfaced Video Footage Of A 2015 Frederica Wilson Speech Proves John Kelly Got A Key Fact Wrong

The above clip serves as a replay of John Kelly’s appearance at the Thursday press briefing, in which he trashed Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL) for her “selfish” reaction to Trump’s crass phone call to the widow of a fallen U.S. soldier. In doing so, he also expressed how “stunned” he felt by Wilson’s behavior during a 2015 ceremony to dedicate a new FBI building in Miramar, Florida. As Kelly claimed, Wilson supposedly made a point during the speech of stating that she “got the money” ($20 million) to build the new structure by making a call to President Obama:

“A congresswoman stood up, and in a long tradition of empty barrels making the most noise, stood up there in all of that and talked about how she was instrumental in getting the funding for that building, and how she took care of her constituents because she got the money, and she just called up President Obama, and on that phone call, he gave the money, the $20 million, to build the building, and she sat down.”

The Miami Herald subsequently reported that Wilson was outraged at Kelly’s aside. “He shouldn’t be able to just say that, that is terrible,” she said “This has become totally personal.” Wilson bolstered her reaction by pointing out that she wasn’t even a member of Congress at the time that funding for the building — which was dedicated to slain FBI agents Benjamin Grogan and Jerry Dove — went through the approval process.

Now, the Sun Sentinel has obtained exclusive video of this dedication speech, which proves that Kelly mischaracterized her words. CNN points out that Wilson did not take credit for obtaining the funding, although she did discuss the Congressional funding process and the securing of dedications for Grogan and Dove. And although she was a congresswoman while making the speech, that had nothing to do with the funding of the building.

While it may seem like Kelly simply didn’t get all the facts straight, the “mistake” is actually more significant, for he made a big point of saying how “stunned” he was while watching her speech. It was an effort clearly aimed toward attacking Wilson’s character while also taking a swipe at Obama.

UPDATE #1 -2:30pm EST: During Friday’s White House press briefing, Sarah Huckabee Sanders stated that Kelly still “absolutely” stands behinds his remarks on Wilson.

(Via CNN, Miami Herald, LA Times & Sun-Sentinel)