Hillary Clinton defends Dingell as 'everything that Trump is not'

Hillary Clinton defends Dingell as 'everything that Trump is not'
© Greg Nash

Former Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonNYT editorial board endorses Warren, Klobuchar for Democratic nomination for president Sanders v. Warren is just for insiders Alan Dershowitz: Argument president cannot be impeached for abusing power a 'strong one' MORE defended the late Rep. John DingellJohn DingellTrump suggests LBJ is in hell: 'He's probably looking down — or looking up' Change with minimal risk: Trump's Jimmy Carter problem 10 controversies that rocked the Trump White House in 2019 MORE (D-Mich.) as “everything that Trump is not” after the president went after the former congressman at a rally this week.

Clinton tweeted that Dingell was "a true public servant and statesman in a way this president knows he can never be.” 

“I’m so proud of what @DebDingell has done to carry on John's work in Michigan and Bill and I are standing with her today,” she added, referring to Rep. Debbie DingellDeborah (Debbie) Ann DingellMaking waves to protect America's waters Trump suggests LBJ is in hell: 'He's probably looking down — or looking up' 10 controversies that rocked the Trump White House in 2019 MORE (D-Mich.), John Dingell’s widow. 

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The tweet comes amid backlash from members of both parties over Trump's broadside against the Dingells in their home state of Michigan this week.

Trump sparked both cheers and moans from the crowd gathered in Battle Creek, Mich., on Wednesday night after saying John Dingell, the former dean of the House, was “looking up” from hell after noting he lowered flags to half-staff in the wake of his death.

“She calls me up. 'It's the nicest thing that's ever happened. Thank you so much. John should be so thrilled. He's looking down. He'd be so thrilled,” Trump said, referring to a call he received from Debbie Dingell. “'Thank you so much, sir.'"

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"I said, 'That's OK, don't worry about it.' Maybe he's looking up. I don't know,” Trump said.

The attack drew rebukes from several Republicans, with lawmakers calling it inappropriate and urging the president to apologize.

“I’ve always looked up to John Dingell — my good friend and a great Michigan legend. There was no need to 'dis' him in a crass political way. Most unfortunate and an apology is due,” said Rep. Fred UptonFrederick (Fred) Stephen UptonThe rise of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in 2019 The Memo: Impeachment's scars cut deep with Trump, say those who know him Hillary Clinton defends Dingell as 'everything that Trump is not' MORE (R-Mich.). 

John Dingell, the longest-serving member of Congress, died in February at the age of 92.