UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It took Donald Trump 706 days to visit a zone. And Sam, it sounds like he was pretty concerned about his safety.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know, it seems legitimately like he was freaked out about his safety.
SAMANTHA VINOGRAD, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: The president seems to have confused in some way this troop visit with the campaign rally by raising things like the border wall and things that he has done for them.
MARC THIESSEN, RESIDENT FELLOW, AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTE: It's a great day. All credit to the president for making the trip. All credit to him for taking the first lady, which is a historic first.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have to give the president credit for doing the right thing. I wish he had done it earlier. I wish we did not have to shame him into doing it.
JOHN KIRBY, CNN MILITARY AND DIPLOMATIC ANALYST: You also just want to know that the boss cares about what you're doing and he cares about the mission. So there's no question that this will be a big morale boost for these young men and women.
(END VIDEO CLIPS)
KURTZ: Do journalists have a point about politicizing the trip or are they just grasping at ways to snipe at the commander in chief? The partial shutdown and the border wall debate prompting some of the president's media detractors to ratchet up their rhetoric, some even questioning whether he can survive.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIPS)
JOE SCARBOROUGH, MSNBC: This president appears to be unhinged and there are no adults left. He has fired them all.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All of the sudden, the mainstream media wants to attack this president protecting our borders and the Democrats in Congress, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer, have no plan for border security.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So isn't the wall, the semantics game and the politics game, isn't this just about denying President Trump that he campaigned promise he made?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Not an ounce of compassion for the many, many people suffering through this holiday grudge match that he has created. This country is in strive because this president has too many temper tantrums.
(END VIDEO CLIPS)
KURTZ: Are these denunciations based more in his performance or their personal animus? New York Times report that Trump may have gone a bogus medical exemption to avoid Vietnam but did the paper really have the goods? Plus, Kevin Spacey accused of multiple incidents of sexual assault. He breaks his silence by resuming the role of a fictional president.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KEVIN SPACEY, ACTOR: Despite all the poppycock, the animosity, the headlines, the impeachment without a trial, despite everything, despite even my own death, I feel surprisingly good and my confidence grows each day that soon enough you will know the full truth.