— Caitriona Perry (@CaitrionaPerry) June 27, 2017
From the alleged fight between Disney and the White House over what his robotic counterpart would say at in the Hall of Presidents, to the discovery of fake Time magazine covers featuring the Celebrity Apprentice star at his many golf clubs, Donald Trump had a busy Tuesday. Yet the leader of the free world still made time to compliment Irish reporter Caitríona Perry’s “nice smile” during an Oval Office phone call with her country’s newly elected (and openly gay) prime minister, Leo Varadkar.
“We have a lot of your Irish press watching us, and they’re just now leaving the room,” Trump told Varadkar before pointing at Perry. “Where are you from? Go ahead, come here. Where are you from? We have all of this beautiful Irish press.” Perry then explained she was from the Irish outlet RTÉ News, and told Trump her name. He repeated her name to Varadkar over the phone, adding “she has a nice smile on her face, so I bet she treats you well.”
“One minute we were outside the window and the next minute I’m meeting the President of the United States,” Caitríona told RTÉ Entertainment after her encounter with the US Commander in Chief.
“Usually we would shoot from outside the window of the White House and that’s what we were expecting today but instead we were invited inside to witness the President’s call to the Taoiseach. When we went in he was already on the phone but I caught his eye and he called me over.”
Her “bizarre moment” notwithstanding, Perry offered little else by way of explanation or opinion concerning Trump’s comments. According to the Post, however, journalists and politicos alike took to Twitter to express their discomfort with the scene. What’s more, this isn’t the first time Trump has made public remarks about a female reporter with questionable intent (and results), as was famously the case after a Fox News GOP debate when he said moderator Megyn Kelly had “blood coming out of her…whatever.” (Throw in the Access Hollywood tape for added discomfort, if necessary.)