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‘This Never Happened’: Sources Close To Trump Rally To His Defense Over Atlantic Story


President Donald Trump was quick to deny a recent report from The Atlantic, which alleged that he had said a number of disrespectful things about fallen American service members — and in the days that followed, a number of others have gone on record to support him.

Trump claimed that the story had been invented to help The Atlantic “gain some relevance.”

First Lady Melania Trump made a rare public statement as well, saying that the story was “not true” and adding, “It has become a very dangerous time when anonymous sources are believed above all else, & no one knows their motivation. This is not journalism – It is activism. And it is a disservice to the people of our great nation.”

Former White House press secretary Sarah Sanders noted that she was there at the time Trump was supposed to have made the reported comments — and she said simply, “This never happened.”

Dan Scavino also said that he was with President Trump in France and called the report “complete lies.”

General Keith Kellogg, national security adviser to Vice President Mike Pence, also defended the president, saying, “The Atlantic story is completely false. Absolutely lacks merit. I’ve been by the President’s side. He has always shown the highest respect to our active duty troops and veterans with utmost respect paid to those who have given the ultimate sacrifice and those wounded in battle.”

Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie joined CNN’s Dana Bash and offered his own defense of the president Sunday, saying that he had not heard Trump disparage American service members and adding, “I would be offended too if I thought it was true. Again, I think ‘anonymous’ are the same people that brought you fake heart attacks, fake strokes, Russian collusion.”

WATCH:

Former National Security Adviser John Bolton — who left the White House and the president’s favor in very public fashion — said in his book that weather and security were the primary factors that ultimately canceled Trump’s visit to Belleau Woods in France.

Bolton also told Fox News White House correspondent John Roberts that if the canceled trip had been the result of a presidential temper tantrum, he would have given it a full chapter in his book.

The Federalist’s Ben Domenech acknowledged the many hurtful things President Trump had said about his late father-in-law — Republican Arizona Sen. John McCain — but also noted that The Atlantic had not exactly “clothed itself in glory” with regard to journalistic integrity.

WATCH:

Domenech tweeted a similar sentiment when the story broke, saying, “I’m confident I have better sources within this White House than @JeffreyGoldberg, and I expect that upon investigation his anonymously sourced story will live up to the quality we can expect from The Atlantic under his leadership.”

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany called the story “garbage,” adding, “the liberal activists at The Atlantic are uninterested in the truth and they are only interested in peddling conspiracy laden propaganda.”

And they were not alone.

Fox News reporter Jennifer Griffin said that she was able to corroborate some details of The Atlantic’s story — but her sources were kept anonymous as well.

COLUMN BY

VIRGINIA KRUTA

Associate Editor.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.