Corker squabbles with Trump critic during hiking encounter

U.S. Sen. Bob Corker and David George Haskell, a University of the South professor, had a political discussion during an encounter while hiking over the weekend, reports the Times-Free Press. Haskell says Corker responded to his criticism of Donald Trump with “attacks on my character and complaints about the uncivil way that I was disrupting his restful Sunday walk ‘in nature’ .. and suggested Haskell leave Tennessee.

“I greeted [Corker] then told him how deeply ashamed I was to be from a state where our senator will not denounce Trump for boasting of sexual assault,” wrote Haskell, who confirmed his account later in a telephone interview. “Corker has been silent on this matter and on the racism and hate that the T-monster has spewed into our country these last months.”

And Senate Foreign Relation Committee Chairman Corker’s response?

“If you don’t like it, then you should leave the state.”

But the senator’s office, however, offered a much different account of what transpired.

“While hiking alone yesterday afternoon on Stringer’s Ridge, Senator Corker was aggressively approached by Professor Haskell, who was hiking with three other individuals,” Corker spokeswoman Micah Johnson said in a statement.

She said the professor “began shouting at Senator Corker in a profanity-laced tirade while pointing a finger in his face and told the senator that he was embarrassed to live in a state where the citizens voted to overwhelmingly elect Donald Trump.

“Senator Corker calmly suggested to the professor that he did not have to live in Tennessee if he did not wish to do so,” Johnson continued before adding, “Senator Corker believes that if the leadership of Sewanee witnessed the exchange, they would be sorely disappointed in the behavior of someone tasked with leading students.”

Further from Michael Collins’ report:

Haskell denied that he approached Corker aggressively or used profanity and said he never claimed he was ashamed to live in Tennessee — only that he was ashamed that the senator did not stand up to Trump.

The three members of Haskell’s party – Katherine Lehman, a former music professor at the University of the South; Cesar Leal, an assistant professor of music at the university; and Troy Johnson, a social worker in Chattanooga – backed up Haskell’s version of events and said they were offended by Corker’s response.

“It was so elitist, as if it was a powerful person talking down to someone who disagreed with him politically and he could say whatever he wanted,” Lehman said. “He just had a smirk on his face.”

Haskell said he was shaken up and had trouble sleeping Sunday night after his run-in with the senator.

“I expected better of Sen. Corker,” he said. “In the past, he hasn’t been a demagogue. He has been a reasonable person. Not anymore. He will not say a word against Trump. And I think that’s disgraceful.”

UPDATE/Note: For an interesting contrast, compare the Washington Post report on the encounter, HERE, with the Patriot Post piece HERE.

2 Responses to Corker squabbles with Trump critic during hiking encounter

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    Rep. James L. Peach, Sr. says:

    Even though I am not a fan of Sen.Corker, I believe Haskell was acting and doing like many Socialist professors, promoting an agenda that is Anti-American and Anti-Constitution! Even though Corker is a US Senator, he is entitled to space and peace in his personal time!

  • Avatar
    Linda says:

    I have been an adjunct professor at two much more prestigious universities in Tennessee (MTSU and Tennessee Tech) than the one that employs Haskell and I voted for Trump because there was no other option that would not have been a vote for that lying, thieving, mess that is Hillary Clinton.

    Let me get this straight. Haskell APPROACHED Sen. Corker in a loud, menacing, and very disruptive way and HE wants an apology? Someone needs to get Haskell a crib to crawl into for his nap. Like most Liberals, he doesn’t have a clue!

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