GOP rep refutes Trump's account of Sanford attacks: 'People were disgusted'

GOP rep refutes Trump's account of Sanford attacks: 'People were disgusted'
© Greg Nash

Rep. Justin AmashJustin AmashWatchdog files Hatch Act complaint against Sanders for picture with Kanye in MAGA hat Cook Political Report shifts 7 more races towards Dems Rand Paul ramps up his alliance with Trump MORE (R-Mich.) on Wednesday disputed President TrumpDonald John TrumpDemocrats slide in battle for Senate Trump believes Kushner relationship with Saudi crown prince a liability: report Christine Blasey Ford to be honored by Palo Alto City Council MORE's claim that GOP lawmakers approved of his attacks on Rep. Mark SanfordMarshall (Mark) Clement SanfordOvernight Defense — Presented by The Embassy of the United Arab Emirates — Haley shocks Washington with resignation | Turkish officials reportedly conclude Saudis killed journalist | Trump eyes second Kim summit after midterms GOP on timing of Haley’s announcement: 'Unusual' and 'odd' On The Money: House passes 4B spending bill to avert shutdown | Trump 'not happy' after Fed's latest rate hike | Trump says he refused meeting with Trudeau MORE (R-S.C.) during a closed-door meeting on immigration Tuesday night.

The president tweeted Wednesday afternoon that House Republicans "applauded and laughed loudly" when he called Sanford a "nasty guy."

"House Republicans had front row seats to @POTUS’s dazzling display of pettiness and insecurity. Nobody applauded or laughed. People were disgusted," Amash tweeted in response.

During the meeting, Trump asked if Sanford was in attendance before taking a shot at him — Sanford was not present because his flight to Washington, D.C., was delayed.


The comments were met with boos and and grumbles, according to multiple sources in the room.

Amash called the remarks a "classless cheap shot," tweeting on Wednesday that people in the meeting "were disgusted." 

“I was very upset. It was very unnecessary and as far as I’m concerned, it was very rude,” Rep. Walter JonesWalter Beaman JonesGOP leaders hesitant to challenge Trump on Saudi Arabia The Hill's 12:30 Report — Sponsored by Delta Air Lines — Kavanaugh accuser Ford offers gripping testimony | Sights and sounds from Capitol | Hearing grips Washington Overnight Defense — Presented by Raytheon — Trump caps UN visit with wild presser | Accuses China of election meddling | Pentagon spending bill clears House | Hawks cheer bill | Lawmakers introduce resolution to force Yemen vote MORE (R-N.C.) said. “To make light of Mark Sanford is very unacceptable."

Sanford appeared on CNN shortly after Trump tweeted, saying he thought that Trump's comments at the Tuesday meeting were meant to caution other GOP lawmakers against opposing the president.

“I think part of what the president did yesterday was to send a very chilling message to my colleagues on, ‘hey, if you speak up against me, there will be consequences,’ ” Sanford said. “And I think that’s the last thing we need in our system.”

The outgoing congressman said he'd heard an outpouring of "awfully kind things" from fellow lawmakers.

Sanford, who lost his primary race last week after intervention by Trump for his opponent, has been an outspoken critic of the president's rhetoric, but has largely supported the administration's policies.

Trump previously endorsed Sanford's primary opponent hours before polls closed, saying the South Carolina representative has been "very unhelpful to me in my campaign to [Make America Great Again]."