‘You got burned’: 'Fox & Friends' has been slamming the White House on Rob Porter all week

  • "Fox & Friends" host Brian Kilmeade has been uncharacteristically hostile toward President Donald Trump over the last two days regarding the White House's response to the resignation of former staff secretary Rob Porter, who has been accused of domestic abuse.
  • Referring to the White House's reliance on the FBI's background check system, Kilmeade told a White House spokesperson on Tuesday, "You relied upon it and you got burned."
  • Kilmeade also chastised Trump for not condemning Porter publicly.

For a show that has often served as one of President Donald Trump's primary news sources and biggest boosters, "Fox & Friends" has been fiercely critical of the White House's response to allegations of domestic abuse from former staff secretary Rob Porter.

Host Brian Kilmeade had some harsh words for White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah on Tuesday after Shah defended the background check investigation system that Porter had reportedly been subject to for months. 

"You relied upon it and you got burned because you had a two-time accused domestic abuser there at a very sensitive position where perhaps he shouldn't have been had that been fully exposed," Kilmeade said. "So what changes now?"

Porter had been given an interim security clearance for work in the Trump administration while the FBI was in the process of doing a background check investigation on him. Porter has been accused by both of his ex-wives of physical and emotional abuse.

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Rob Porter in his White House role
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Rob Porter in his White House role
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 2: White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter watches as President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with North Korean defectors in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, DC on Friday, Feb. 02, 2018. President Donald Trump talked to reporters and members of the media about the release of a secret memo on the F.B.I.'s role in the Russia inquiry. (Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
White House Chief of Staff John Kelly walks with White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter to depart with U.S. President Donald Trump aboard the Marine One helicopter from the White House in Washington, U.S. November 29, 2017. Picture taken November 29, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski (C) says hello to reporters as he and White House advisors Sebastian Gorka (from L), Omarosa Manigault and Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci accompany President Trump for an event celebrating veterans at AMVETS Post 44 in Struthers, Ohio, U.S., July 25, 2017. Jonathan Ernst: "The most visible person in any White House is naturally the President, followed by the press secretary. But there are also the staff who support them, any one of whom might suddenly jump into public view and be national news for a day or two. For those of us covering the President Trump administration, there seem to be more compelling figures in the West Wing than ever before. It's crucial to know who's who and why they're important. When I raised my camera and back-pedalled ahead of the group to take this image Lewandowski gave me a hello and pointed right into the lens. I liked the photo, but had no idea it would go a little bit viral, especially since Scaramucci, who was the biggest mover and shaker that week, was hidden back in the pack. But I guess the image catches a glimpse of what it's like to be a West Wing staffer on the road."REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst/File photo SEARCH "POY STORY" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "REUTERS POY" FOR ALL BEST OF 2017 PACKAGES. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY.
UNITED STATES - FEBRUARY 01: Rob Porter, right, White House staff secretary, and Don McGahn, White House counsel, attend a luncheon featuring a speech by President Donald Trump at the House and Senate Republican retreat at The Greenbrier resort in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va., on February 1, 2018. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
Stephen Miller, White House senior advisor for policy, right, talks to Rob Porter, White House staff secretary, after arriving on Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018. In a speech to congressional Republicans at the Greenbrier resort in West Virginia today, Trump recognized the party's leadership and then riffed on his election. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 01: White House chief of staff John Kelly, (L), walks with staff secretary Rob Porter, (C), and White House senior advisor Stephen Miller, before boarding Marine One to depart from the White House with President Donald Trump, on February 1, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 05: White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter (L) and Senior Advisor to the President Stephen Miller (C) return to the White House after a day trip with President Donald Trump to Cincinnati, Ohio, February 5, 2018 in Washington, DC. While in Ohio President Trump delivered remarks after touring cylinder manufacturer Sheffer Corporation while the first lady Melania Trump visited patients and their families at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Gary Cohn, director of the U.S. National Economic Council, right, Stephen Miller, White House senior advisor for policy, left, and Rob Porter, White House staff secretary, walk toward the White House after arriving on Marine One with U.S. President Donald Trump, not pictured, in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, Jan. 18, 2018. Trump today threw a wrench into negotiations over a shutdown-avoiding spending bill by saying he didn't want a provision funding children's health insurance in the short-term measure. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
White House Chief of Staff John Kelly walks with White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter to depart with U.S. President Donald Trump aboard the Marine One helicopter from the White House in Washington, U.S. November 29, 2017. Picture taken November 29, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter (L) arrives aboard Air Force One with fellow senior staff and U.S. President Donald Trump for a summer vacation at his Bedminster estate, at Morristown Airport in Morristown, New Jersey, U.S. August 4, 2017. Picture taken August 4, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
White House chief economic adviser Gary Cohn (R) talks with White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter (L) as they arrive with U.S. President Donald Trump aboard Air Force One at Indianapolis International Airport in Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S. September 27, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
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Kilmeade's comments to Shah were preceded by another tense exchange on "Fox & Friends" with White House deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley on Monday, in which Kilmeade pressed Gidley on Trump's relative public silence on the Porter scandal.

"So the president is just as outraged as many Americans about the alleged domestic abuse which looks pretty strong, the evidence, strong against Porter," Kilmeade said. "Why won't he say that publicly?"

Gidley, like Shah, responded with what has become a standard talking point from the White House on the issue.

"Well I don't know if he's going to say that publicly or not, and I've not spoken with the president about this," Gidley responded, "but I can say we lean on a process at the White House, and quite frankly as soon as we found out about this on Tuesday, by Wednesday Rob Porter was gone, the president has been very clear that all forms of abuse, and all forms of battery against women are deplorable."

Kilmeade then reiterated his original line of attack.

"But he hasn't said that," he fired back. 

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White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah
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White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah
White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah holds the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 8, 2018. REUTERS/ Leah Millis
White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah answers questions during the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 8, 2018. REUTERS/ Leah Millis
A member of the media does a live shot while White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah enters the briefing room to hold the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 8, 2018. REUTERS/ Leah Millis
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 22: Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah heads back into the White House after briefly talking to reporters about the ongoing partial federal government shutdown January 22, 2018 in Washington, DC. Lawmakers and the White House continue to negotiate an end to the shutdown and a vote is scheduled for noon in the U.S. Senate. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah speaks during the daily briefing in the Brady Briefing Room of the White House on February 8, 2018 in Washington, DC. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 08: Principal Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah, answers questions about former White House staff secretary Rob Porter during a press briefing at the White House, on February 8, 2018 in Washington, DC. Mr. Porter resigned yesterday following allegations of abuse from his two ex-wives. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah speaks during the daily briefing in the Brady Briefing Room of the White House on February 8, 2018 in Washington, DC. / AFP PHOTO (Photo credit should read /AFP/Getty Images)
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A growing scandal

Although Porter was not someone who was widely recognized outside the White House, he had become an increasingly powerful figure in the West Wing.

He was responsible for controlling all the documents that got to Trump's desk, including classified information.

Chief of staff John Kelly, and others in the White House, have come under fire for their handling of the Porter case and for reportedly knowing about elements of the allegations against him in the months before his resignation.

In 2010, Porter was handed a protection order against him as a result of his one of his wives' allegations.

Kelly was well aware of this order, one senior member of the administration told Politico. Although Kelly had reportedly considered pressuring Porter to leave his role, according to that official, he never did.

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John Kelly and Rob Porter
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John Kelly and Rob Porter
White House Chief of Staff John Kelly walks with White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter to depart with U.S. President Donald Trump aboard the Marine One helicopter from the White House in Washington, U.S. November 29, 2017. Picture taken November 29, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
White House Chief of Staff John Kelly walks with White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter to depart with U.S. President Donald Trump aboard the Marine One helicopter from the White House in Washington, U.S. November 29, 2017. Picture taken November 29, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
White House Chief of Staff John Kelly walks with White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter to depart with U.S. President Donald Trump aboard the Marine One helicopter from the White House in Washington, U.S. November 29, 2017. Picture taken November 29, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
White House Chief of Staff John Kelly walks with White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter to depart with U.S. President Donald Trump aboard the Marine One helicopter from the White House in Washington, U.S. November 29, 2017. Picture taken November 29, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
White House Chief of Staff John Kelly walks with White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter to depart with U.S. President Donald Trump aboard the Marine One helicopter from the White House in Washington, U.S. November 29, 2017. Picture taken November 29, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter (R) and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly (L) walk to board Air Force One with U.S. President Donald Trump en route to New Jersey from Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, U.S. August 4, 2017. Picture taken August 4, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter (R) and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly (L) walk to board Air Force One with U.S. President Donald Trump en route to New Jersey from Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, U.S. August 4, 2017. Picture taken August 4, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter (R) and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly (L) walk to board Air Force One with U.S. President Donald Trump en route to New Jersey from Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, U.S. August 4, 2017. Picture taken August 4, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
White House Chief of Staff John Kelly (L) leads White House chief economic adviser Gary Cohn and White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter off of Air Force One as they arrive with U.S. President Donald Trump (not pictured) at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, U.S. February 1, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
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On Tuesday, FBI Director Christopher Wray told the Senate Intelligence Committee that the FBI had submitted a partial report on Porter's background check in March 2017, and after several follow-ups, closed the investigation file in January.

This timeline contradicts the official White House narrative, which claims that the background investigation was ongoing, and claims the allegations against Porter were not known within the administration until last week.

Kelly, who had worked closely with Porter for several months, at first issued a statement supporting Porter as a man of "true integrity" before criticizing domestic abuse in general without mentioning Porter specifically.

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