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After the New York Times reported that former FBI director James Comey tried to avoid being hugged by President Trump at an event in January, Hillary Clinton aide Philippe Reines, who played Trump during debate prep last fall, tweeted a video of Clinton trying to avoid his attempt at a Trump hug.
“Not easy to avoid the unwanted Trump hug, sometimes it even takes practice,” tweeted Reines on Friday, accompanied by a video.
Not easy to avoid the unwanted Trump hug, sometimes it even takes practice…
A favorite moment from debate prep (9/24/16): pic.twitter.com/JAAHaqKFoa
— Philippe Reines (@PhilippeReines) May 19, 2017
Reines, pretending to be Trump, walks out on stage with his arms wide open in an attempt to hug Clinton. She tries to give him a high-five instead and he jokingly chases after and hugs her anyway as the Clinton staff laughs behind the camera. The prep took place in Westchester County, New York, two days ahead of the first presidential debate.
“I think everyone can understand why she was not eager to find herself in his embrace,” Clinton’s campaign communications chief, Jennifer Palmieri, told CNBC.
Clinton also chimed in on Reines‘ tweet.
I burst out laughing when I saw this video this morning. Hope it brightens your day. https://t.co/CEcdoaQUuC
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) May 19, 2017
Reines‘ tweet appears to be a response to the Times‘ Comey story.
In that article, the former FBI director’s friend Benjamin Wittes relayed, “Comey said that as he was walking across the room he was determined that there wasn’t going to be a hug. It was bad enough there was going to be a handshake. And Comey has long arms so Comey said he pre-emptively reached out for a handshake and grabbed the president’s hand. But Trump pulled him into an embrace and Comey didn’t reciprocate. If you look at the video, it’s one person shaking hands and another hugging.”
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