Rep. James Comer, R-Ky., criticized Donald Trump on Sunday for dining with Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, and white supremacist Nick Fuentes at a pre-Thanksgiving dinner at the Mar-a-Lago club. of Trump in Florida last week.
“Well, he certainly needs better judgment about who he’s dining with,” Comer said in an interview on NBC News’ “Meet the Press.” “I know he issued a statement. He said he didn’t know who those people were.”
Pressed on whether to condemn Trump’s actions, Comer said he would not meet with “that person,” nor with Ye.
“But that’s my opinion,” Comer said.
After the dinner news broke, the 2024 Trump campaign went into damage control mode. Fuentes, a far-right activist and holocaust Denier, He is reportedly helping Ye, who recently lost major endorsement deals for making anti-Semitic comments, with his second presidential campaign, a person familiar with the dinner conversation said.
In a statement posted on his Truth Social platform, Trump claimed that Ye appeared “unexpectedly” at Mar-a-Lago with “three of his friends, whom he knew nothing about,” referring to Fuentes, the 2016 Trump campaign manager. , Karen Giorno. and another man who was an associate of Ye’s, sources familiar with the dinner said.
Trump, who described the backyard dinner as “quick and uneventful,” is facing backlash for having dinner with Ye and Fuentes.
Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, a Republican, said Sunday in CNN’s “State of the Union” that dinner is “very concerning, and shouldn’t happen.”
“We need to avoid that kind of empowerment of the extremes,” Hutchinson said. “And when you meet people, you empower. And that’s what you have to avoid. You want to diminish their strength, not empower them. Stay away from them. .”
Hutchinson added that Trump did not have an “accidental meeting” with Ye: “You have to be absolutely clear in your communication that this is not acceptable dogma, this is not an acceptable conversation, this is not an acceptable story, and you have to repudiate it. “
The dinner got heated after Ye, who announced another run for president in 2024 on Thursday, asked Trump to be his running mate, the sources said.
Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a onetime Trump ally, was among a handful of Republicans who criticized Trump for hosting Fuentes.
Christie said in an interview with The New York Times“This is just another example of a terrible lack of judgment by Donald Trump, which, combined with his previous poor judgments, makes him an untenable candidate for the 2024 Republican Party general election.”