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Top U.S. Olympian slams Trump; wants to represent the people, 'not the president

U.S. Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn said she wants to represent the U.S., not President Donald Trump, at the 2018 Winter Olympics, and would not visit the White House if invited. (Mike Stobe/Getty Images for USOC)

One of the biggest stars who will compete for the United States at the Winter Olympics in February used her platform to take a shot at President Donald Trump this week.

In a CNN interview that aired Thursday, skier Lindsey Vonn said she wants to represent the people of the United States well, which apparently excludes the president.

“Well, I hope to represent the people of the United States, not the president,” Vonn said. “I take the Olympics very seriously and what they mean and what they represent, what walking under our flag means in the opening ceremony.

“I want to represent our country well. I don’t think that there are a lot of people currently in our government that do that,” Vonn continued.

Vonn also joined a group of several other U.S. athletes in preemptively stating that she would not attend the White House if invited by Trump.

“Absolutely not. No,” Vonn said. “But I have to win to be invited. No, actually I think every U.S. team member is invited … so no, I won’t go.”

Others who have said they will reject an invitation include skier Gus Kenworthy and figure skaters Ashley Wagner, Nathan Chen and Adam Rippon.

Vonn became a star in 2010, when she won the gold medal in the Vancouver Olympics. However, her career has been derailed by injuries since.

Vonn didn’t compete in the 2014 Sochi Games due to a knee injury, and has been out most of 2017 with an arm injury.

The location of the 2018 Winter Olympics, Pyeongchang, South Korea, has created some controversy.

United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley cast some doubt on U.S. participation in the games Wednesday when she called the issue of whether U.S. athletes would compete an “open question,” citing security concerns because of the games’ proximity to North Korea.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Mission to the U.N. clarified Thursday, saying that the United States “looks forward to participating in the Winter Olympics” and that the U.S. is working with South Korea to secure the venues.

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