On Friday night, Texas Republican Rep. Dan Crenshaw took on HBO’s “Real Time” host Bill Maher over accusations from the liberal that President Donald Trump and his administration are “passing the buck” when it comes to defending the American people from the China-originated novel coronavirus, or COVID-19.
Crenshaw outlined steps Trump took since January regarding the virus and highlighted Democrats’ downplaying COVID in the same time period, the same politicians now pointing their fingers at the president for supposedly not taking the pandemic seriously enough.
The level headed takedown of Maher gained steam on social media over the weekend. “Crenshaw climbed Twitter’s trending list, where he remained throughout the weekend,” Market Watch reported. “For the most part, he was feeling the love.”
During the appearance, Maher pressed Crenshaw, a former Navy SEAL, for defending Trump, whom he accused of having “pass-the-buck, lie, finger-point, and shirk-responsibility” tendencies. Unfairly tying Trump to COVID deaths, he also suggested Trump’s travel ban from China on January 31 – a ban leading Democrats called “xenophobic” – was not strong enough.
“The reality is about 40,000 people came in after [Trump closed off travel with China]. These were U.S. citizens and green-card holders and passport holders being repatriated. U.S. citizens. So you have to make the argument then that we shouldn’t allow them in,” Crenshaw outlined to Maher, Fox News reported. “It sounds to me that you’re fully agreeing with President Trump on this one, and everybody else disagreed with him. And if you’re saying that the travel restriction should have been more extreme, then fine. You clearly had the foresight back then, but nobody else did,” he added.
“Your criticism appears to be based on one thing – that Trump was overly optimistic,” the former SEAL continued. “That’s his style. You can criticize it, that’s fine, but it’s not connected to the actions that were actually taken.”
“I provide all of that context as we try to basically accuse this man of … he’s being accused of having blood on his hands,” Crenshaw said. “And context is so important here. If we’re going to criticize somebody’s actions, we have to do it with the facts they knew at the time. So I’m just trying to be fair here. I don’t really care about defending him or his actions. I just care about letting people know the truth. And when people make these accusations, I have to ask them: Is the goal to make Trump look bad or is the goal to get to the truth? Because there are two separate sets of answers for that.”
The internet was flooded with commentary about Crenshaw, whose name is still trending on Twitter as of Sunday afternoon.
“It’s hard seeing Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas) not running for president [one] day. Will do any media outlet, which stems from confidence in himself and his worldview. Possesses likability, authenticity, and pragmatism,” said The Hill’s Joe Concha. “Save the tweet.”
It’s hard seeing Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas) not running for president on day. Will do any media outlet, which stems from confidence in himself and his worldview. Possesses likability, authenticity and pragmatism. Save the tweet.
— Joe Concha (@JoeConchaTV) April 19, 2020
“This @DanCrenshawTX interview is [fire emoji],” wrote Matt Whitlock, senior advisor for the National Republican Senatorial Committee. “He gives perhaps the most detailed timeline of the governments response, Congress’ actions, and Democrats inexcusable efforts to politicize every step of the way, delaying lifesaving relief to American families.”
This @DanCrenshawTX interview is 🔥.
He gives perhaps the most detailed timeline of the governments response, Congress’s actions, and Democrats inexcusable efforts to politicize every step of the way, delaying lifesaving relief to American families.pic.twitter.com/3JnBQl0US2
— Matt Whitlock (@mattdizwhitlock) April 19, 2020
“I gotta admit: [Dan Crenshaw] has more tools in his kit than an entire Home Depot. A seamless performance,” said Fox News host Greg Gutfeld.
— GregGutfeld (@greggutfeld) April 19, 2020
— Austen Fletcher (@fleccas) April 19, 2020