President Donald Trump wants credit for the economic progress in Rhode Island, sending a series of tweets Friday attacking New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman over a recent column that argued Democrats running for president have moved too far left, a column which also praised Democratic Governor Gina Raimondo.
Trump complained that Friedman was pleasant to him during a phone call, but subsequently criticized him in the column, titled ‘Trump’s Going to Get Re-elected, Isn’t He?’
Thomas “the Chin” Friedman, a weak and pathetic sort of guy, writes columns for The New York Times in between rounds of his favorite game, golf. Two weeks ago, while speaking to a friend on his cell phone, I unfortunately ended up speaking to Friedman. We spoke for a while and...— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 19, 2019
....Governor of the State did a good job. That may be true but she could not have done it without the tremendous economic success of our Country & the turnaround that my Administration has caused. Really Nasty to me in his average I.Q. Columns, kissed my a.. on the call. Phony!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 19, 2019
Trump also complained that he was not given credit for improvement in Rhode Island’s economy. Under Raimondo, unemployment dropped from 6.6 percent in January 2015 to 3.6 percent in May.
Friedman had used Rhode Island’s example to argue for a more centrist Democrat to rise to the top of the presidential contender pack, or risk another four years of Trump.
“It will be an overthrow of all the norms, values, rules and institutions that we cherish, that made us who we are and that have united us in this common project called the United States of America,” Friedman warned of a two-term Trump presidency.