Former MSNBC host Chris Matthews on Monday praised Donald Trump’s “presidential behavior” after the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, drawing outrage on social media. Ginsburg, a feminist icon who was part of the Court's liberal wing, died Friday at age 87 after a long cancer battle.

“Trump is right to show respect for RBG. True presidential behavior. Far too rare,” Matthews, a longtime political commentator, posted on Twitter. 

It's unclear if Matthews meant that it was "far too rare" for Trump to show "true presidential behavior" or if he meant for presidents to show such respect for Supreme Court justices of opposing ideologies. It seems likely that it was the former rather than latter given the lengthy criticisms Matthews had directed at Trump in recent years.

Matthews, 74, announced his retirement from broadcasting in March. The left-leaning pundit had hosted the political program, "Hardball," which made its debut in 1994.

Matthews has defended Republican presidents before for seemingly low-bar reasons. Former MSNBC anchor Keith Olbermann also slammed Matthews on Monday for the comments about Trump, referencing how Matthews had previously credited former President George W. Bush, who appeared to be taking a victory lap in May 2003 for the "Mission Accomplished" speech amid the Iraq War.

"He won the war. He was an effective commander. Everybody recognizes that, I believe, except a few critics," Matthews had said on "Hardball."

Trump had touched on Ginsburg’s passing late Friday after a rally in Minnesota. 

"She led an amazing life, what else can you say? She was an amazing woman — whether you agreed or not — she was an amazing woman, who led an amazing life," Trump said. "I am sad to hear that.”

But after praising Ginsburg, Trump in a "Fox & Friends" interview Monday seemed to dismiss the intentions Ginsburg dictated to her granddaughter in the days before her death: "My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed."

"I don't know that she said that, or was that written out by Adam Schiff and Schumer and Pelosi. I would be more inclined to the second ... But that sounds like a Schumer deal or maybe a Pelosi or Shifty Schiff,” Trump said, referring to Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff.

Ginsburg’s death has ignited a tense political battle ahead of the November election. On Monday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., reiterated his vow to quickly fill Ginsburg’s seat.

“We are already hearing incorrect claims that there is not sufficient time to examine and confirm a nominee. We can debunk this myth in about 30 seconds,” McConnell said. “As of today there are 43 days until Nov. 3 and 104 days until the end of this Congress. The late, iconic Justice John Paul Stevens was confirmed by the Senate 19 days after this body formally received his nomination. Nineteen days from start to finish.”

Democratic leaders have accused McConnell of hypocrisy after he held up President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland in 2016. McConnell blocked the nomination because it was an election year, with the seat filled instead in 2017 by Trump's nominee Neil Gorsuch.