Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Donald Trump, knocked anti-Trump protesters Monday, questioning why the same individuals protesting the temporary travel ban to the U.S. from seven Middle Eastern countries apparently weren't as upset about veterans "dying waiting for care" outside Veterans Affairs hospitals.
Conway was defending one of Trump's latest executive actions, pointing out that the president's first responsibility is to keep the American people safe. Then, echoing a line she used Sunday arguing that temporarily banning travel from seven Middle-Eastern countries is a "small price to pay" for greater national security, Conway said the ban is "temporary" and "narrowly prescribed."
"So people are protesting things. Imagine if they had put all these energies, these tearful senators, these senators with bullhorns, imagine if they had protested outside VA hospitals when our veterans were dying waiting for care," Conway said.
Conway was referring to New York Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer shedding tears at a news conference Sunday while calling Trump's travel ban "mean-spirited" and "un-American."
"Where is the protest on that?" Conway added, calling attention to the lack of public outrage over VA backlogs that, in some cases, resulted in veterans not receiving the medical attention they needed soon enough.
The executive action to which Conway was referring throughout the ABC interview temporarily halts travel to the U.S. by people from any of the seven "areas of concern," which the Obama administration designated as such in 2015 because of terrorist activity. The seven countries from which travel to the U.S. will not be allowed for roughly the next three months are Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen.
Protests against Trump's action have broken out in cities across the country, from New York to Los Angeles.
A federal judge in New York later issued an emergency stay to allow travelers with valid visas to remain in the U.S. for now.