At first, President Donald Trump told an estimated crowd of 40,000 at the National Boy Scouts Jamboree in West Virginia he didn’t want to talk about “policy fights” or “fake news.”
Then he did.
He called the Affordable Care Act “horrible”; dinged former President Barack Obama for not attending the event over now-changed policies barring gay scouts and scoutmasters; and told Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price to get the votes to replace Obamacare, or “you’re fired.”
He’s now facing criticism for breaking 80 years of presidential tradition by talking politics at the gathering.
In Georgia, Atlanta mother Sherri Scott was disappointed her 15-year-old son had to sit through “foolishness” in what she thought would be a “once in a lifetime opportunity” to hear the president.
The mother wishes Trump would’ve offered “a positive message about America,” about “doing the right thing and making the right choices.” Previous presidents have stuck to similar messages.
The Boy Scouts issued a statement distancing itself from the president’s remarks, reminding that every president is the honorary leader of the organization and invited to speak at the jamboree, which is held every four years.
For Hank Brake, a singer-songwriter whose Eagle Scout attends Georgia Gwinnett College, the uproar is another example of the left overreacting.
“People need to realize Trump is Trump. He’s going to open his mouth and put his foot in it,” Brake, who thinks Trump is generally taking the country in the right direction, said.
Read more about what local scouts and their families had to say about President Trump’s jamboree speech at myAJC.com