President Donald Trump insisted last week that he was down in his protective White House bunker for a “tiny, little short period of time” for an “inspection.” Not true, Attorney General William Barr spilled Monday: The president was there for protection from protesters.
“Things were so bad that the Secret Service recommended the president go down to the bunker,” Barr told Bret Baier on Fox News.
Barr revealed the news angrily, insisting that the president was in danger. “We can’t have that in our country,” he added, apparently forgetting he had just contradicted his boss.
He added: “I’ve gone down two or three times ― all for inspection. And you go there, some day you may need it. ... I went down, I looked at it.”
Trump was reportedly rushed by the Secret Service to the underground Presidential Emergency Operations Center on May 29 as hundreds of protesters gathered outside the White House during nationwide demonstrations triggered by the May 25 police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Trump spent nearly an hour in the bunker, which was designed for use in emergencies, such as terrorist attacks.
The bunker stay leaked to the media two days later, and Trump came up with an alternative story for his visit to the secure hideaway.
CNN reported Trump was so incensed that news coverage characterized him as being holed up in his bunker during protests that he wanted to be seen outside the White House gates.
The day after the bunker visit leaked, he declared himself the law-and-order president who would crack down on the anti-racism protests in a Rose Garden statement. He then strode across the street to a church after law enforcement cleared the way for him by bashing and gassing peaceful protesters who had been gathered outside the White House.