The Washington Free Beacon MSNBC’s Steve Schmidt said Monday that Vice President Mike Pence used the American flag and national anthem as a “prop” when he walked out of an NFL game between the Indianapolis Colts and San Francisco 49ers on Sunday after players kneeled for the anthem.
President Donald Trump tweeted after Pence walked out that he told the vice president he should leave if players kneeled. Media members were also told by a staffer there could be an “early departure” from the game.
“So he took Air Force 2 [with a] full package of Secret Service from Las Vegas to Indianapolis for a stunt; inconvenienced tens of thousands of Colts fans,” Schmidt said on “Morning Joe.” “To, again, use the flag and the anthem as a prop.”
“And the greatest desecration of that flag, is the assault on its foundational values, which occurs everyday with this administration with their attacks on the spirit of the First Amendment, freedom of the press, freedom of expression,” Schmidt continued.
“Utterly appalling, wasteful, profligate, disgusting behavior from the vice president,” he concluded. “He ought to be ashamed of himself.”
Host Joe Scarborough indicated that this was more shocking because the people of Indiana were welcoming their former governor.
Former adviser to Sen. Rand Paul (R., Ky.) and current MSNBC political analyst Elise Jordan said it was sad to see Pence pull such a stunt.
“It’s sad,” Jordan said. “The whole state, I’m sure, wants to celebrate and welcome him, and then they’re just part of being a political prop. It’s sick, and it’s sad, and it’s a waste of taxpayer dollars, too.”