Trump Schedules Video Conference With Troops So He Doesn’t Have To Visit Them In Person

Donald Trump is planning a Thanksgiving teleconference with members of the military on Thursday amid criticism of his support for troops.

The White House announced Wednesday night that Trump would be participating in “a Thanksgiving teleconference with members of the military” on Thursday morning. Trump will be at his Florida resort in Mar-a-Lago on Thanksgiving.

Trump has drawn backlash in recent weeks, including for his decision not to visit Arlington National Cemetery to commemorate Veteran’s Day. Trump later made a rare public show of regret, saying during an interview with Fox News that he “should have” visited the cemetery.

The president also received blowback for his criticism of retired Navy Adm. William McRaven, whom Trump knocked in remarks stating that he believed the U.S. should have killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden sooner.

Trump has yet to visit troops deployed in a war zone, a trip that has become a tradition for sitting presidents.

Trump told the Associated Press in a recent interview that he doesn’t think visiting troops in a war zone is “overly necessary.” “I’ve been very busy with everything that’s taking place here,” he said.

“I’m going to a war zone,” Trump then told reporters Tuesday in response to a question about his support for the troops, although he did not offer any specific details.

Trump on Tuesday dismissed a Washington Post report that said the president has cited safety concerns as a reason for not visiting troops. He also cited “security concerns” during an interview on “Fox News Sunday.”

“Well, I think you will see that happen,” he said about visiting troops in Iraq or Afghanistan. “There are things that are being planned. We don’t want to talk about it because of — obviously because of security reasons and everything else.”

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