- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 13, 2017

Peyton Manning says it would have been “un-American” for him to decline an invitation to play golf with President Trump, as many pressured him to do.

The retired NFL legend earned a round of applause on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” Tuesday night when he explained his reasoning behind his controversial golf outing with the president in June.

“I had a lot of people tell me not to do it. … You did,” Mr. Manning told Mr. Kimmel, causing the host to chuckle.

“But to me, no matter what your beliefs are, I heard Arnold Palmer say one time, ‘If the president of the United States ever asks you to play golf, you do it,’” the former quarterback said. “It’s a no-brainer. And it was a fantastic experience.”

Mr. Maning said Mr. Trump was a “great” and “gracious” host who loves sports.

“I’ve had a chance to play with President Bush before — if President Obama or President Clinton asked me, I’d be there in a heartbeat,” he said. “It was just the experience of playing with the office that was pretty cool to me. And I think it would have been almost un-American to have said no.”

Mr. Kimmel joked about whether the president cheats on the golf course.

“I counted his strokes,” Mr. Manning cracked. “He played it honest. He gives you a lot of putts, now, he will give you a lot of putts, but he expects those to be reciprocated.”

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