James Mattis Zings Trump: ‘He called Meryl Streep Overrated, I’m the Meryl Streep of Generals’

General James Mattis took a shot at Donald Trump during an October 17 speech, saying that he was actually honored that the president would put him in the same ‘overrated’ category as Meryl Streep.

Former Secretary of Defense General James Mattis got the last laugh after hearing that President Donald Trump called him “the world’s most overrated general” at a meeting on October 16. “So I would just tell you, I’m honored to be considered that by Donald Trump because he also called Meryl Streep an overrated actress,” Mattis, 69, said at the annual Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner in New York, on October 17. “So I guess I’m the Meryl Streep of generals and frankly that sounds pretty good to me. And, you do have to admit, between me and Meryl, at least we’ve had some victories.” The former Marine Corps general, 69, also riffed on Trump avoiding the Vietnam War draft with a pointed joke, saying that he “earned my spurs on the battlefield” while Trump “earned his [bone] spurs from a letter from the doctor.”

Mattis went on to joke that “the only person in the military that Mr. Trump doesn’t think is overrated” is “Colonel Sanders.” Trump’s “overrated” comment wasn’t the first time that the president mocked Mattis, who used to be one of his top Cabinet officials. Since Mattis resigned as Defense Secretary in December 2018, after Trump announced plans to withdraw troops from Syria, the president has pettily attacked him. The latest incident, however, came during a contentious meeting at the White House (the same one House Speaker Nancy Pelosi walked out of) as Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer brought Mattis up during a discussion about Syria and ISIS. Schumer said during an appearance on MSNBC the next morning that Trump cut him off to insult Mattis.

“[Trump] bragged that he was much better at this than Mattis,” Schumer said. “Mattis is one of the most respected people here in Washington, by all parties. I worked with him closely. For the president to berate a man who has served the country, who is respected as a human being and as a general and as a Secretary of Defense, and not have a policy… what bothered Mattis was the same thing I think that bothers so many of us.”

Trump’s  called Streep “one of the most overrated actresses in Hollywood” and “a Hillary [Clinton] flunky who lost big” after she slammed him in a speech at the Golden Globes in January 2017, right before his inauguration. It hasn’t stopped her from speaking out against him over the past two years, and likely will never.

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