From the February 28 edition of MSNBC's The 11th Hour With Brian Williams:
BRIAN WILLIAMS (HOST): Will you concede that in the run-up of the last 12 hours before this speech tonight, the president got a little sideways on the mission itself? Seeming to indicate in his interview with Fox & Friends, seeming to blame, quote, “the generals” for losing Ryan in this mission and not seeming to grasp that the title commander in chief means just that. It's all on you, that's part of the job.
HUGH HEWITT: Well, I'm not going to concede that, Brian, because I understood it -- again, I always try and listen to Donald Trump differently than I listen to other people, having been involved in so many exchanges with him. I think what he was trying to say is that the mission was planned on President Obama's watch. It was executed with the approval of the generals, and it did, as he said in the speech tonight, contribute to the national security.
I do think he has to become more deft in those settings, and indeed today -- when he talked about immigration with Chuck and with Chris and with others, he may have overextended what was just a creek in the door tonight that I heard. So, I actually listened to that and said to myself, he's got to tinker with that, but it wasn't what the media said it was.
And if I'm sitting at home tonight, the biggest gap that I've got, I think, that's occurring in blue state turned red state America, is the media is not recognizing what was a terrific speech by a person they weren't quite sure could give a State of the Union speech. And that's the take-away for me, as well as of course Ms. Owens.
WILLIAMS: I said it was his most speech-like of speeches.
WILLIAMS: But did you just tell us we have to listen to him differently?
HEWITT: Yes, I did, and I --
WILLIAMS: How does that go?
HEWITT: And I put that down to the fact that -- It's going to go very well outside of the beltway, or outside of the Acela corridor. You know, Salina Zito's famous comment, “Some people take him seriously and not literally. Others take him literally and not seriously.” It boomerangs around pretty much every news cycle, and tonight, you could take him both literally and seriously.