The Latest: White House slams Corker for criticizing Trump

August 24, 2017 GMT
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White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders speaks to reporters at the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, Thursday, Aug. 24, 2017. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
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White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders speaks to reporters at the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, Thursday, Aug. 24, 2017. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump (all times EDT):

4 p.m.

The White House is slamming Tennessee Sen. Bob Corker for questioning President Donald Trump’s competence.

Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was asked about Corker’s comments during a press briefing Thursday.

She says, “I think that’s a ridiculous and outrageous claim and doesn’t dignify a response from this podium.”

Corker, the chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, last week delivered a stinging rebuke of Trump after the president said “both sides” were to blame for the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Corker said Trump had not shown the stability or competence required for an American president to succeed and had recently “not demonstrated that he understands the character of this nation.”

Trump has been ramping up attacks on fellow Republicans in recent days, blaming them for his stalled legislative agenda.



10:40 a.m.

It’s a total eclipse by President Donald Trump of Barack Obama.

Trump has retweeted a quadruple photo spread of Trump slowly eclipsing the former president.

The series starts with a photo that shows a glimpse of Trump, who is in color in the frame, along with a black-and-white image of Obama. Trump gradually commands more of the frame in the next two photos until the fourth and final one shows a smiling Trump and no Obama.

Trump retweeted the series, titled “The Best Eclipse Ever!” from Twitter user, @JerryTravone.

Travone describes himself on Twitter as a YouTube actor, political junkie and “Proud Trump supporter.”


9:20 a.m.

President Donald Trump is attacking Republican congressional leaders on debt ceiling negotiations.

On Twitter Thursday, Trump says he asked Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan to attach legislation to increase the country’s borrowing limit to a bill related to veterans. Trump said they didn’t do it and “now we have a big deal with Dems holding them up.”

The government has enough money to pay its bills until Sept. 29. After that, Congress would have to give permission for the government to borrow more money to meet its obligations.

McConnell did not respond to questions about Trump’s comments Thursday.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has previously indicated he would prefer a “clean” bill on the debt ceiling that would not have to be tied to any spending changes.



8:25 a.m.

White House counselor Kellyanne Conway says President Donald Trump will keep fighting for his promised border wall, after the president threatened a government shutdown over the issue.

Speaking on Fox News’ “Fox & Friends” Thursday, Conway says Trump is “going to stick to building that wall and he wants the money to pay for it.” She adds: “anybody who is surprised by that has not been paying attention for two years.”

At a rally Tuesday, Trump said: “If we have to close down our government, we’re building that wall.”

Conway says it is up to Congress to work with Trump.

The House has already passed a spending bill with funding for the wall. But the measure faces an uncertain future in the Senate, where Democrats and moderates have greater sway.


4:15 a.m.

President Donald Trump can shift dramatically in tone from one speech to the next.

Within a 24-hour span, Trump delivered one speech in which he tore into the media and members of his own party, and a second in which he called for national unity and love.

The about-face seemed to reflect the president’s real-time internal debate between calls for moderation and his inclination to let loose.

On Wednesday, the president spoke in measured tones and stuck to his prepared remarks as he praised veterans at an American Legion conference in Nevada as examples for a nation yearning to set aside its differences. The night before, the president cut loose in Arizona, defying instructions from his aides to stick to the script and angrily renewing his fight with the press.