Lawmakers, media figures and social media users took to Twitter after President Trump Donald John TrumpPresident Trump, first lady attend Christmas service at National Cathedral Trump open to visiting Turkey in 2019 but no 'definite' plans, White House says Trump has weighed dismissing Mnuchin: Bloomberg MORE asked a seven-year-old if he believes in Santa Claus.
Trump and first lady Melania Trump Melania TrumpPresident Trump, first lady attend Christmas service at National Cathedral Trump asks child if he believes in Santa during NORAD calls Russian state-owned network tweets satirical video of Trump getting Christmas presents MORE late Monday took calls from children about Santa's whereabouts, a presidential tradition in conjunction with the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD).
"Merry Christmas.What are you?" Trump asked one caller. "How old are you? …. Are you doing well i n school? Are you still a believer in Santa? "
After a short pause to hear the child's response, the president then added:" Because at seven, it's marginal, right? "
Sen. Chris Murphy Christopher (Chris) Scott MurphyDem senator: Trump saying he does not know his top ISIS envoy 'should scare the hell out of every American' WHIP LIST: Who's in and out in the 2020 race 'So stupid, 'absurd' – Senate Dems condemn shutdown after talks falter MORE (D-Conn.) later tweeted disapproval of Trump's remark, saying: "It's just too freaking fantastic that Trump spent his Christmas Eve calling seven year olds and telling them believing in Santa at their age is 'marginal,' "
" If you're 7, yes, Santa Claus exists and loves you, " tweeted former US attorney Preet Bharara Preetinder (Preet) Singh BhararaGOP senator suspects Schumer of being behind release of Ford letter Preet Bharara questions whether Trump will respect 'presidential alert' system Republicans shift course after outside counsel falters MORE a prominent Trump critic. " And he's on his way. "
New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman, meanwhile, compared Trump to comedian Larry David.
And" roving journalist "Michael Tracey said on Twitter that "Trump ribbing a little kid about believing in Santa is pretty darn funny."
But many critics said that Trump's original question may have ruined Christmas for a young child by suggesting that Santa Claus did not exist.
The New York Times even headlined an article about the comments: "Kids, Please Do Not Read This Article on What Trump Said About Santa Claus."
Dozens of other media figures and Twitter users reacted to the comments, with one calling the president a "Supervillian":
At least this kid's "how I found out Santa was not real" story will be interesting https://t.co/8SvfyUb1fY
– Rosie Gray ( @RosieGray) December 25, 2018
– Tom Taylor (@TomTaylorMade) December 25, 2018
war on Christmas https://t.co/C20rLcvxxv
– Anne Applebaum (@anneapplebaum ) December 25, 2018
Earlier tonight walking next to some tourists on M Street, I heard the kid ask his parents if Santa was shut down too. The mom replied, "No, even Trump can not screw that up."
He screwed it up! https://t.co/u8kHIS5Jwb
– Jonathan Chait (@jonathanchait) December 25, 2018
So, I did this once to an eight-year-old, expressing disbelief that he still believed in Santa. The difference is, I was six. https://t.co/O0ZhQXnu2a
– Josh Barro (@jbarro) December 25, 2018
One thing about a pathological liar is they never know when it's the right time to tell the truth. https://t.co/UHw89XrgGc
– David Baddiel (@Baddiel) December 25, 2018
Donald Trump asking a 7-year-old if they still believe in Santa is to Christmas as Steven Mnuchin Steven Terner MnuchinTrump has weighed dismissing Mnuchin: Bloomberg Trump's Fed feud roils markets, alarms Republicans Dow has worst Christmas Eve on record, S & P enters bear market MORE is randomly reassuring us that banks are not in a liquidity crisis. https://t.co/gjDdqFOA6b
– Matt Fuller (@MEPFuller) December 25, 2018
– Updated at 8:14 a.m.