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June 29, 2017

Toomey: Trump's Twitter insults are 'maddening'

Add a Pennsylvania senator to the list of Capitol Hill Republicans who have blasted President Donald Trump's tweets aimed toward MSNBC co-hosts Thursday morning.

On CNN's "The Lead with Jake Tapper," Sen. Pat Toomey called Trump's Twitter attack against Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough "maddening."

"It's maddeningly frustrating because this is beneath the dignity of the President of the United States, or at least it should be," Toomey told Tapper Thursday afternoon. "It's a distraction. It starts to undermine his ability to get the agenda done."

While MSNBC's "Morning Joe" was on the air, Trump took to Twitter Thursday to criticize "Crazy Mika" and "Psycho Joe," saying he had heard they were talking badly about him.

Trump said the pair had asked him for an interview at Mar-a-Lago around New Year's Eve.

"[Brzezinski] was bleeding badly from a facelift. I said no!" the President wrote.

Toomey was among a slew of irked lawmakers on both sides of the aisle.

"Obviously I don't see that as an appropriate comment," House Speaker Paul Ryan said in a news conference. "What we're trying to do around here is improve the tone, the civility of the debate. And this obviously doesn't help to do that."

Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders defended Trump's tweets in a press briefing Thursday, and she also said on Fox News' "America's Newsroom" that it is necessary to "push back on unnecessary attacks on the president," referring to the MSNBC show.

"This is a president who fights fire with fire," she said, adding that Trump will hit back against "liberal media" who personally attack him.

But Toomey, like other critics, said the president should instead be focusing on his job.

"Get this economy moving again, repeal Obamacare and replace it with a better health care system, provide security in a dangerous world," Toomey said. "Those are the big things, and we really need the president to focus on those things."