Donald Trump remains the presumptive nominee for the Republican presidential ticket, which isn’t so great for the GOP. After all, he keeps doing and saying messed-up things. Over the weekend, the former president had one of his customary meltdowns, this time directed at not only Mitch McConnell but also his wife, Elaine Chao. Chao used to be part of Trump’s administration. That didn’t stop him from saying racist things about her. What do fellow Republicans think about it? With Rick Scott, it’s hard to tell.
The Florida senator went on two separate news programs Sunday morning. He was asked about Trump’s comments on both. And both times he awkwardly deflected, even when repeatedly pressed for an answer.
Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL) has *quite* a pained word salad answer to CNN's Dana Bash asking him about Trump's statement that Mitch McConnell has a "death wish" (and also gave Elaine Chao a nickname).
"As you know, the president likes to give people nicknames," Scott says in part. pic.twitter.com/o1VqIRpw0P
— The Recount (@therecount) October 2, 2022
On CNN, host Dana Bash asked Scott about Trump making thinly-veiled violent threats against McConnell, saying he has a “DEATH WISH,” as well as him calling Chao “Coco Chow.” At first he tried to change the subject before brushing it off, saying, “the president likes to give people nicknames,” adding, “I’m sure he has a nickname for me.”
Bash continued to press him, though, at which point he admitted that it’s “never, ever okay to be a racist. I think you always have to be careful if you’re in the public eye with how you say things. You want to make sure you’re inclusive.” But he refused to condemn Trump’s remarks, only saying, “I hope no one is racist. I hope no one says anything that’s inappropriate” — despite Trump having done just that.
Scott also went on Meet the Press, where host Margaret Brennan was even more forceful. Over the course of four minutes, she asked him six times to condemn not only Trump’s comments but also a bizarre claim made by Marjorie Taylor Greene at his rally on Saturday evening, where she claimed Democrats want Republicans “dead” and that they’ve “already started the killing.” Scott wouldn’t condemn that one either.
Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) asked 6 times in 4 minutes whether he rejects a racist post from former president Donald Trump and false death claims from Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.).
Scott dodges 6 times. pic.twitter.com/tdV1ttJRGl
— JM Rieger (@RiegerReport) October 2, 2022
When asked if he would rebuke the comments, Scott only said, “Well, I think what we’ve got to do is we’ve got to bring everybody together.” Brennan wouldn’t let it go, asking if he thought Trump and Greene’s comments were dangerous. “I think — I — I think we all have to figure out how do we start bringing people together,” he replied.
As Brennan repeatedly pressed him for a rebuke, Scott alternately changed the subject, offered vague talk of unity or claimed he hadn’t heard the widely-reported comments made by prominent people in his rally. Another thing he refused to do: talk about his incredibly unpopular plan to chop social security.