Journalists on social media expressed their dismay when President Trump said, "I know you weren't thinking," to a female reporter at a Tuesday press conference.
During the event, focused on the newly minted trade deal with Mexico and Canada, ABC News' Cecilia Vega was called on and, while waiting for the microphone, Trump said that she was in a "state of shock" that he called on her.
“I’m not, thank you, Mr. President," Vega said.
"That’s OK. I know you’re not thinking, you never do," Trump replied.
The quip from Trump quickly drew ire from viewers.
Vega, an Emmy-winning broadcaster, was quick to comment on the transgression shortly after the conference saying that a news conference meant that reporters could ask "whatever question you want to ask. #FirstAmendment."
[Opinion: As a woman, white Republican men have been my greatest supporters]
A news conference means you get to ask whatever question you want to ask. #FirstAmendment— Cecilia Vega (@CeciliaVega) October 1, 2018
Former Obama staffer and ABC TV writer Pat Cunnane said that Trump's insult and the smiles and laughs from the men behind him were just "who they are" and that they couldn't help themselves.
Trump putting down a female reporter while his cronies laugh behind him is maybe not the look you want right now - but they can’t help themselves. It’s who they are. https://t.co/biIRNlhzVp— Pat Cunnane (@PatCunnane) October 1, 2018
White House Playboy reporter Brian Karem noted a "disturbing" trend with female reporters.
Cecilia Vega @CeciliaVega was told she didn't think. @kaitlancollins was told to quit talking. @PeterAlexander and I didn't get answers. But disturbing how women were treated by POTUS since the subject was how a SCOTUS nominee treated women. pic.twitter.com/a5p28aOX1V— Brian J. Karem (@BrianKarem) October 1, 2018
Some, including the LA Times' Shashank Bengali, suggested Trump misheard, "I'm not, thank you," as, "I'm not thinking," and seized the opportunity to "insult" her.
She said, “Thank you, Mr. President.” He misheard her and took the opportunity to insult her: “I know you’re not thinking; you never do.” https://t.co/CZmO2YgeF8— Shashank Bengali (@SBengali) October 1, 2018
Trump did have his defenders. Far-right media personality Jack Posobiec said the Left didn't care who Vega was, but instead were more interested in "weaponizing" her against Trump.
Look at how the left reduces award-winning Cecilia Vega to "female reporter"— Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) October 1, 2018
They don't care about who she is
All they care about is weaponizing her gender to attack Trump pic.twitter.com/Aaz8V8pWKW
Vega was originally interrupting a string of trade questions to turn the focus onto Judge Brett Kavanaugh, but Trump refused to answer questions on his embattled Supreme Court nominee until later in the press conference.
This was not the only time Vega had drawn the ire of the administration. White House press secretary Sarah Sanders and Vega clashed in a heated exchange after Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to campaign finance violations.