Watch CBS News

Trump Calls Florida Rep. Wilson 'Wacky'

Follow CBSMIAMI.COM: Facebook | Twitter

WASHINGTON (CBSMiami/AP) — President Donald Trump continued his feud with a Democratic congresswoman who accused him of being insensitive to the widow of an Army sergeant killed in Niger.

Trump said "wacky Congresswoman Wilson" lied about a phone call conversation he had with the soldier's widow.

Sgt. La David Johnson was one of four American soldiers killed in Niger nearly two weeks ago. Rep. Frederica Wilson, a Florida Democrat who was with Johnson's family when Trump called to offer condolences, said Trump had told the widow that "you know that this could happen when you signed up for it... but it still hurts."

Cowanda Jones-Johnson said Trump spoke disrespectfully of her nephew, Sgt. La David Johnson, when he called family members Tuesday.

On Friday, Wilson affirmed that she wasn't misinterpreting the president's choice of words.

"There's nothing to misinterpret, he said what he said. I just don't agree with it," Rep. Wilson told CNN. "I don't agree that that is what you should say to a grieving family."

Wilson, however, had no comment on the remarks made about her Thursday by White House chief of staff John Kelly. Kelly defended Trump and said he was "stunned" by the criticism of Trump's condolence call to the sergeant's family.

Kelly accused Wilson of "selfish behavior."

Wilson gave a cryptic response to media on Thursday, repeating a phrase she said her mother told her when she was a child. Wilson said: "The dog can bark at the moon all night long but it doesn't become an issue until the moon barks back."

The brother of a Marine from Maine, who was killed in the crash of an Osprey aircraft, said President Trump never reached out to his family, either by letter or phone call.

Frederica Wilson
Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL) speaks about the death of Sgt. La David Johnson before attending a Congressional field hearing on nursing home preparedness and disaster response October 19, 2017 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Joe Skipper/Getty Images)

Capt. Ben Cross of Bethel was one of three Marines killed in the crash in August off the coast of Australia. His older brother, Ryan Cross, who's an Army veteran, said Trump portrays himself as a champion of the armed forces but it's "all talk and no action."

He said it was upsetting to see the president politicizing fallen military service members.

The Associated Press reached out to the families of all 43 people who have died in military service since Trump became president and he made contact with about half of them.

(TM and © Copyright 2017 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.