A former aide to President Donald Trump ran into a wall of opposition on a CNN panel Monday night after he suggested that people needed to stop criticizing the president for his reaction to the massacre in Pittsburgh and instead pray more.
“Too often, we as a country put our faith in our elected leaders,” Marc Short, former White House director of legislative affairs, said on CNN. “And I think that the one who can help to heal our land is the one who in Second Chronicles said, ‘If my people will humble themselves and turn and face me and pray to me, I will heal their land.’ And that’s what our nation needs to be doing, is more praying as opposed to getting more involved in political finger-pointing.”
Rabbi Jay Michaelson, a columnist for The Daily Beast, was shocked by Short’s comment.
“I’m sorry,” Michaelson said, “isn’t praying what the people in the synagogue were doing when they were gunned down?”
After Short briefly tried to explain himself, Joan Walsh, national affairs correspondent for The Nation, jumped in.
“To tell people to just pray because we have a man in the White House who can’t find it within himself to do the decent thing and tone this down ― that’s really disrespectful.”
Even Amanda Carpenter, former communications director for Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), was having none of it.
“Everybody should pray, and I pray for our leaders ― definitely Donald Trump,” Carpenter said. “But for things to change, he must dramatically change course going forward. Until he lets these movements know that their presence and their support is not welcome, they will continue to feel emboldened.”
Check out the video above. The exchange comes after the 6:15 mark.