A former Hillary Clinton volunteer is learning the hard way he crossed the line when he took to Twitter to mock the widow of a Navy SEAL honored by President Trump Tuesday night during his address to Congress as an “idiot.”
Dan Grilo, whose Twitter profile identifies him as a former Clinton and Obama volunteer, tweeted his harsh comment after Trump praised William “Ryan” Owen who was killed last month during a raid in Yemen, reported Fox News.
“Ryan died as he lived: a warrior, and a hero – battling against terrorism and securing our nation,” Trump said, as he paid honor to the SEAL’s wife, Carryn Owens.
“Our veterans have delivered for this nation — and now we must deliver for them,” Trump said.
The president’s remark drew a two-minute standing ovation from the entire chamber, including most otherwise non-responsive Democrats, as Carryn wept, looked heavenward, mouthed a thank you and joined the clapping crowd.
The emotional moment was noted by L.A. Times reporter Matt Pearce, who tweeted: “Owen’s wife is crying, and she looks up at the ceiling, overwhelmed, as Congress gives her long, sustained applause.”
“Sorry, Owens’ wife,” tweeted Grilo, “you’re not helping yourself or your husband’s memory by standing there and clapping like an idiot. Trump just used you.”
Reaction was immediate, with many quickly identifying Grilo’s employer, Chicago-based Liberty Advisor Group, and calling for him to be fired.
Donald Trump Jr. responded with: “Hatred from the other side. I would think this is beyond what a human is capable of saying to someone, but it’s not!”
Grilo’s attempts to backtrack and cover up the tweet proved unsuccessful. After posting an apology for his “poorly worded tweet,” he set his Twitter account to private and then deleted it.
By Wednesday morning, those contacts to his employer bore fruit, with his profile being removed from the company website and Grilo terminated.
A statement on Liberty’s site read:
“Last night during President Trump’s speech, a Liberty Advisor Group employee sent out an offensive and inappropriate tweet regarding the Gold Star family that was being rightly honored before Congress and the Nation. The personal views of this individual do not represent Liberty and we vigorously disavow them.
“Although the message and subsequent apologies were sent from an individual’s personal account, and bore no connection to his work with Liberty, his comments were inconsistent with the Company’s values and the unyielding respect it has for the members of our Nation’s Armed Forces.
“Regardless of whether the comments in the tweet were intended to cause the hurt and anger that they ultimately generated, they were unacceptable to us, and the individual who issued the tweet is no longer affiliated with Liberty. Liberty’s culture places a high value on the men and women of America’s military who fight to defend us and our families. We honor them. We want to express our sincere condolences to Mrs. Owens.
“We also apologize to all those who have served this nation, including those Liberty employees who have themselves served, and anyone else who was offended by these comments.”
Grilo was not entirely alone in his criticism of Trump’s honoring of Owens.
Celebrity Bill Maher tweeted that he “wished [Owens] hadn’t allowed herself to be used as his prop like that,” while filmmaker Michael Moore said it was “a sort of a f you to the people who are criticizing Trump.”