On Sunday, the president retweeted a video of a pro-Trump procession at a retirement home in Florida where one supporter shouted “white power” twice while pumping his fist in the air.
“Thank you to the great people of The Villages,” Trump, the self-proclaimed “least-racist person there is,” wrote in a now-deleted tweet. “The Radical Left Do Nothing Democrats will Fall in the Fall. Corrupt Joe is shot! See you soon!!!”
The footage shows senior citizens at The Villages retirement community participating in a golf-cart motorcade and exchanging profanities and insults with nearby counter-protesters. While the “white power” parader spewed his racist nonsense, another supporter sitting next to him can be heard chanting “Trump.”
The tweet was deleted a few hours later after drawing heavy criticism for blatantly promoting white supremacy (though it should be noted that it’s far from the first time the president’s used his platform to publically thank white supremacists for their support).
Even members of his own party put him on blast. In an interview with CNN, Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina called the video “indefensible.”
“There’s no question, he should not have retweeted it. He should just take it down,” Scott, the Senate’s only Black Republican, said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
White House spokesperson Judd Deere said the president “did not hear the one statement made on the video.” “What he did see was tremendous enthusiasm from his supporters,” per the Associated Press.
Which is an answer I have two problems with:
1) Even with how bullshit a claim that is, it’s pretty clear in the video that this idiot yelled “white power” twice, so is Trump saying he heard one but not the other? Is this a doublespeak nod towards his racist supporters, or has my research into QAnon conspiracy theories rubbed some residual craziness off on me?
2) Why oh why, out of all the lies he could have picked, would the president’s PR team choose one that adds even more fuel to the speculation about his obviously failing health? They could have come up with a line about how he mistakenly heard something else (like, uh, I don’t know...Dwight power maybe? I’m sure old folks are binging The Office on Netflix during quarantine like the rest of us) but instead, they essentially went with “Sorry, the president desperately needs hearing aids and probably a nap or else he gets cranky.”