During Tuesday’s press briefing, White House press secretary Sean Spicer weighed in on the viral video depicting a passenger being forcibly removed from a United Airlines flight by law enforcement on Sunday after refusing to give up his seat.
Spicer said he had been “disturbed” by the “unfortunate incident,” which shows aviation officers pulling 69-year-old David Dao from his seat, then dragging him down the aisle and off the plane.
Spicer said he was sure President Donald Trump had seen the video as well, and was asked to speculate as to what his reaction might have been.
“I don’t think anyone looks at the video and isn’t a little disturbed that another human being is treated that way,” Spicer said.
He stopped short of weighing in on whether or not the federal government should investigate passenger treatment on airplanes, saying that the matter seemed more like one of local importance.
“I think there’s plenty of law enforcement to review a situation like that, and I know United Airlines has stated that they are currently reviewing their own policies,” Spicer said. “Clearly, when you watch the video, it is troubling to see how that was handled, but … I think for us to start to get in front of what should be a local matter” would not be appropriate.
“From a human-to-human standpoint,” Spicer concluded, “to watch a human being get dragged down an aisle with their head banging off armrests, and not think that it could have been handled better? I think we can all agree on that.”