President Donald Trump "actually was surprised" that the U.S. airstrike that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani wasn't "a unifying event for the country," The New York Times' White House correspondent Maggie Haberman said Friday.
CNN's John Berman asked Haberman if Trump was surprised by Thursday's House vote on curbing his power to go to war without Congressional approval.
"He actually was surprised this was not more of a unifying event for the country, which is what he expected it was going to be," Haberman said, according to The Hill. "Something more along the lines of what you saw around the Iraq War lead-up.
"However, that lead-up came after a massive attack on U.S. soil," she added. "It’s not remotely the same. It's not as if Gen. Soleimani's name rolls off of most voters' tongues very easily."
"Look, he's not separating this from impeachment politics. This has roiled impeachment politics. He recognizes this is all related," Haberman continued. "I think that he's aware there's questions about how legally binding this is, even if it goes to the Senate and it passes. But he does not want it highlighted that he is taking an act that could be seen as continuing these forever wars."
Haberman went on to refer to the speech that Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., gave about his decision to vote for the resolution, which only two other Republicans in the House supported.
"That speech from Matt Gaetz, the Republican who supports the president, on the floor yesterday was very, very important," Haberman said. "This is a president who ran against the Iraq War, ran as somebody who was going to get us out of the Middle East, who opposed George W. Bush's use of intelligence. And those are some of the same questions being raised about his administration right now."
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