CNN anchor Jake Tapper criticized President Trump Friday over remarks Trump made at a rally about conditions in Baltimore, accusing the president of exploiting the city's homicide rate to "score political points."
During his Cincinnati rally on Thursday night, Trump told his supporters that the homicide rate in Baltimore is "significantly higher" than in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala. He then asked the audience to suggest other places.
"Give me a place that you think is pretty bad, give me a place," Trump told the crowd before someone shouted "Afghanistan."
"I believe it's higher than Afghanistan," the president added.
Tapper, who was one of the moderators at CNN's Democratic debates this week, slammed Trump for making sport about "dead Americans."
"President Trump in a reelection rally in which he is, of course, running to again represent all Americans, last night seemed to make sport of Americans being killed in an area of the country that's being run by his Democratic rivals," Tapper began. "The president there using the homicide rate of an American city to try to score political points, actually asking for audience participation ... Again, these are dead Americans that he's talking about."
"The Lead" anchor then invoked a tweet Trump posted in 2015 during riots in Baltimore following after the death of Freddie Gray in police custody.
When another Twitter user suggested that the Obama administration "drop" Trump into the city to show President Obama "how it's done," the then-real estate mogul claimed he would "fix it fast."
"Now that he's president, Mr. Trump seems to take no responsibility at all for the city he too represents in Washington," Tapper said. "He doesn't seem to be doing anything to quote 'fix it fast.' These homicide statistics are not fodder to be used for fun at rallies, they're tragedies!"
"If these statistics indicate a failure of the leaders of Baltimore and the leaders of Maryland, and they do, they're also a sign to Baltimore residents that their president is failing them as well," Tapper added. "A man who had said he would 'fix it fast' just weeks before he announced that he was running for president, but someone today who seems more inclined to look at the homicide numbers as something to exploit on the campaign trail, almost gleefully."