Trump Promotes Video Showing Apparent Supporter Shouting ‘White Power’
President Donald Trump promoted a video on Twitter Sunday morning showing a man in a golf cart with Trump campaign gear shouting “white power.” Trump Promotes Video Showing Apparent Supporter Shouting ‘White Power’
The video, which Trump said was from the Florida retirement community known as The Villages, featured a parade of golf carts, some with pro-Trump signs, driving past anti-Trump protesters who were shouting curses at them. The man who is heard shouting “white power” was responding to protesters shouting “racist.”
So Trump just retweeted and thanked a guy who was golfing and shouting white power in the Villages.
This comes after he spent last night targeting black protesters with his twitter.
— Ethan Somers (@ethanjsomers) June 28, 2020
Y’all these amazing ass Democratic Seniors are from The Villages in Florida and they are dragging the MAGAs that live there. pic.twitter.com/Ek8MJSUL8g
— (@JewelsJourneys) June 28, 2020
The tweet was removed from his feed hours later.
“Thank you to the great people of The Villages,” Trump had written. “The Radical Left Do Nothing Democrats will Fall in the Fall. Corrupt Joe is shot. See you soon!!!”
In a statement to reporters, White House deputy press secretary Judd Deere said Trump “is a big fan of The Villages” but “did not hear the one statement made on the video.”
“What he did see was tremendous enthusiasm from his many supporters,” Deere added.
Speaking on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., said of Trump’s promotion “there’s no question he should not have retweeted it.”
“He should just take it down,” Scott said, adding he thinks the video is “indefensible.”
“We should take it down,” he said. “That’s what I think.”
Elsewhere on “State of the Union” on Sunday, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said “obviously neither the president, his administration nor I would do anything to be supportive of white supremacy or anything” or the like.
“I’ve not seen that, and so I don’t want to comment further on that,” Azar said after CNN’s Jake Tapper played the video on air. “But obviously the president and I and his whole administration would stand against any acts of white supremacy.”
In an interview with CBS’s “Face the Nation,” NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund President Sherrilyn Ifill said, “This is really not about the president taking it down.”
“This is about the judgment of the president in putting it up,” she added. “It is about what the president believes. And it is time for this country to really face that.”
The president has a history of problematic retweets dating back years. He promoted an account with the handle “WhiteGenocideTM” during the 2016 campaign and during recent months he has increasingly retweeted accounts supportive of or promoting the QAnon conspiracy theory.
Trump has also been accused of appearing sympathetic to white supremacists. In 2017, Trump famously said that there were “very fine people” among a group of white nationalists in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Trump has remained steadfast in his opposition to renaming military bases and removing statues honoring members of the Confederacy even as members of his own party express openness to doing so. Trump has instead promoted harsh penalties for protesters who tear statutes down, some of which are not of Confederates.
On Saturday, Trump tweeted that a vote for him will be a vote to protect “our Heritage, History and LAW & ORDER!”
Trump Tweets Video With ‘White Power’ Chant, Then Deletes It
President Donald Trump on Sunday tweeted approvingly of a video showing one of his supporters chanting “white power,” a racist slogan associated with white supremacists. He later deleted the tweet and the White House said the president had not heard “the one statement” on the video.
The video appeared to have been taken at The Villages, a Florida retirement community, and showed dueling demonstrations between Trump supporters and opponents.
“Thank you to the great people of The Villages,” Trump tweeted. Moments into the video clip he shared, a man driving a golf cart displaying pro-Trump signs and flags shouts ‘white power.” The video also shows anti-Trump protesters shouting “Nazi,” “racist,” and profanities at the Trump backers.
“There’s no question” that Trump should not have retweeted the video and “he should just take it down,” Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., told CNN’s “State of the Union.” Scott is the only Black Republican in the Senate.
“I think it’s indefensible,” he added.
Shortly afterward, Trump deleted the tweet that shared the video. White House spokesman Judd Deere said in a statement that “President Trump is a big fan of The Villages. He did not hear the one statement made on the video. What he did see was tremendous enthusiasm from his many supporters.”
The White House did not respond when asked whether Trump condemned the supporter’s comment.
Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, condemned Trump. “We’re in a battle for the soul of the nation — and the President has picked a side. But make no mistake: it’s a battle we will win,” the former vice president tweeted.
Trump’s decision to highlight a video featuring a racist slogan comes amid a national reckoning over race following the deaths of George Floyd and other Black Americans. Floyd, a Black Minneapolis man, died after a white police officer pressed his knee into his neck for several minutes.
Protests against police brutality and bias in law enforcement have occurred across the country following Floyd’s death and there has also been a push to remove Confederate monuments, an effort Trump has opposed.
Trump’s tenure in office has appeared to have emboldened white supremacist and nationalist groups, some of whom have embraced his presidency. In 2017, Trump responded to clashes in Charlottesville, Virginia, between white nationalists and counter-protesters by saying there were “very fine people on both sides.”
Sherrilyn Ifill, president and director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund told CBS’ “Face the Nation” that ”This really is not about the president taking it down. This is about the judgment of the president in putting it up.”
She added, “It’s about what the president believes and it’s time for this country to really face that.”
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