Melania Trump called out one of the legal scholars testifying at Wednesday’s impeachment inquiry hearing after the professor made a joke involving her son, Barron, for which the professor later apologized.
“A minor child deserves privacy and should be kept out of politics. Pamela Karlan, you should be ashamed of your very angry and obviously biased public pandering, and using a child to do it,” the first lady said in a fiery tweet aimed directly at Stanford Law professor Pamela Karlan.
Trump was addressing Karlan’s mention of Barron Trump in her testimony, wherein she used the 13-year-old’s first name in an analogy to make an argument about the differences between kings and presidents.
“The Constitution says there can be no titles of nobility, so while the President can name his son Barron, he can’t make him a baron,” said Karlan.
Karlan later apologized for her remark, saying, “I want to apologize for what i said earlier about the President’s son, it was wrong of me to do that. I wish the President would apologize, obviously, for the things he’s done that’s wrong, but I do regret having said that.”
Many took to Twitter to note that Melania, who launched the “Be Best” initiative to tackle online bullying, stood by silently in September when her husband mocked Swedish teen climate activist Greta Thunberg on Twitter hours after she delivered an emotional plea to world leaders at the United Nations.
Your husband publicly mocked a 16-year-old girl two months ago https://t.co/7stOAbqXci
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) December 4, 2019
Melania was awfully quiet when her husband was verbally attacking Greta Thunberg, a child with Aspergers, because she dared to speak out about the climate crisis.
But saying that Barron can’t be given a royal title is just too much.
— Tori Fletcher (@hellotorifletch) December 4, 2019
“She seems like a very happy young girl looking forward to a bright and wonderful future. So nice to see!” President Trump sarcastically tweeted at the time.
She seems like a very happy young girl looking forward to a bright and wonderful future. So nice to see! https://t.co/1tQG6QcVKO
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 24, 2019
Earlier in the day, the 16-year-old climate leader gave an impassioned speech at the U.N., railing against world leaders during the General Assembly climate summit.
A week later, Trump fired off yet another tweet mocking Thunberg.
Trump quote-tweeted a supporter with the username @Opinion8dKellie who had shared a video clip of Thunberg’s speech and accused Thunberg of being “an actress.”
The Twitter user, whose bio reads, “Trump will win 2020-PERIOD,” tweeted: “What an actress! ‘I should be in school.’ She’s getting the best education socialism can steal, I won’t be held hostage by someone who just got a learner’s permit. Sorry kiddo! Tell Al to try again.”
“Keep up the great work Kellie!” Trump tweeted on Thursday morning while endorsing @Opinion8dKellie’s “actress” accusation.
Keep up the great work Kellie! https://t.co/PcAnK009EW
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 3, 2019
Professor Jennifer Taub of Vermont Law School ripped into Trump for “cyberbullying a child,” in contradiction of First Lady Melania Trump’s #BeBest campaign against bullying.
“Sir, cyberbullying a child who is helping better the word demonstrates your reprehensible weakness and desperation,” Taub tweeted. “As @FLOTUS tells us, #BeBest. You undermine your wife’s efforts and disgrace the office of the President of the United States. Every. Single. Day.”
CNN’s legal analyst Elie Honig tweeted at the time: “President of United States attacks 16 year old girl who cares about public policy issue.”
President of United States attacks 16 year old girl who cares about public policy issue.
— Elie Honig (@eliehonig) September 24, 2019
Thunberg was diagnosed with Asperger’s – a form of autism – in 2015.