CNN anchor Jake Tapper asked Arizona Senator Jeff Flake on Tuesday whether he saw President Trump as a “spiritual leader.”
Senator Flake has made it known his position on the president, uttering fierce criticism toward his policies. On Tuesday he stated that he as a first-term lawmaker would not run for reelection in 2018, according to The Daily Caller.
Tapper gave Flake his first interview following his announcement that he would not run again. Drawing from the words of Van Jones, a self-professed friend of the journalist, Tapper asked Flake what he thought of how Trump was doing in the spiritual leadership department.
“There is a friend of mine, Van Jones, he talks about the spiritual leadership that presidents offer sometimes,” said Tapper.
“That after—during the JFK presidency, a lot of people were inspired to join the Peace Corps. During the Reagan presidency, a lot of people were inspired to go to Wall Street or to join the military. What kind of spiritual leader do you think President Trump is? What is he inspiring people to do?”
Flake wasn’t sure how to respond, recognizing that he hasn’t often advocated for President Trump.
“Oh, I don’t know how to answer that. My concerns are well-known,” he said, alighting to his recently published book “Conscience of a Conservative,” in which he made known his criticisms of the president.
“I guess let me put it more directly,” said Tapper. “Do you think that President Trump is setting a bad example for the nation’s children?”
Flake answered quickly, “Yes.” He then went on to voice his concern that president Trump was not setting a good example for children.
“The statements that are made about people and seeming to ascribe the worst motives to people as well, that’s something we tell our kids not to do, and, you know, just the mean and cruel tweets or language that is sometimes used, that’s something that I would certainly, you know, think that we shouldn’t do,” said Flake.
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