George Will calls Trump ‘sad, embarrassing wreck of a man’

Conservative columnist George Will on Tuesday called President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump threatens ex-intel official's clearance, citing comments on CNN Protesters topple Confederate monument on UNC campus Man wanted for threatening to shoot Trump spotted in Maryland MORE a "sad, embarrassing wreck of a man" in criticizing his performance at this week's summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Will said Republicans should be embarrassed by Trump's remarks at the summit Helsinki, Finland, in which he attacked the special counsel investigation into Russia's interference in the presidential election, let various comments by Putin stand without question and cast doubt on the findings of U.S. intelligence agencies, seemingly putting equal weight on the word of the Russian leader.

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Trump sought to walk back some of his remarks on Tuesday, saying he misspoke at the press conference.

"America’s child president had a play date with a KGB alumnus, who surely enjoyed providing day care," Will writes in a Washington Post column. "It was a useful, because illuminating, event: Now we shall see how many Republicans retain a capacity for embarrassment."

Will writes that Trump, "who bandies the phrase 'America First,'” put himself first and the U.S.'s interests last during his time spent with Putin. He then goes on to list some of the critical comments Trump received regarding his summit from Republican lawmakers, such as Sens. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin Graham2020 hopefuls skeptical of criminal justice deal with Trump Senate gets to work in August — but many don’t show up Graham: Flynn should lose security clearance MORE (S.C.) and John McCainJohn Sidney McCain15 senators miss votes despite McConnell's criticism of absentees What crime did Manafort allegedly commit? Primary challenge to Trump? It could help him in 2020 MORE (Ariz.). 

He also questions if people like Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisOvernight Defense: Pentagon says Trump canceled parade before cost briefing | Erik Prince renews push for contractors to run Afghan war | More officials join outcry over security clearances Erik Prince hopeful Bolton more open to contractors for Afghan war Pentagon: Trump canceled military parade before being briefed on cost MORE, White House chief of staff John KellyJohn Francis KellyMORE and Director of National Intelligence Dan CoatsDaniel (Dan) Ray CoatsCNN: Trump intel chief not consulted before decision to revoke Brennan's clearance Study: 3 of every 10 House candidate websites vulnerable to hacks West Virginia set to allow smartphone voting for those serving overseas MORE can continue to do their jobs for the president.

Will also questioned whether Russia has something on Trump to "keep him compliant." 

"Americans elected a president who — this is a safe surmise — knew that he had more to fear from making his tax returns public than from keeping them secret," Will writes. "The most innocent inference is that for decades he has depended on an American weakness, susceptibility to the tacky charisma of wealth, which would evaporate when his tax returns revealed that he has always lied about his wealth, too.

"A more ominous explanation might be that his redundantly demonstrated incompetence as a businessman tumbled him into unsavory financial dependencies on Russians. A still more sinister explanation might be that the Russians have something else, something worse, to keep him compliant."

Will has frequently criticized Trump and the Republican Party throughout Trump's presidency. In June, he called for voters to vote out the GOP in the upcoming midterm elections.