If there was one concern held by those seeking to have Combover Crybaby Donald Trump elected as 45th President of the United States that kept them awake at night, it was the then candidate’s wayward Twitter outbursts. Now that he is in office - and increasingly under siege from Robert Mueller’s investigations - his handlers still have that concern - only more so. Trump’s difficulty telling truth from fiction is one of the reasons.
Donald, where's yer hairspray?
The President has been - willingly, it seems - been fed so much propaganda by the likes of Fox News Channel (fair and balanced my arse) that his grip on the real world has loosened of late. Dependant on his TV for so much of what he believes, like the fictional character Chauncey Gardiner in Being There, when right-wing anti-Muslim hatred is broadcast to him, then right-wing anti-Muslim hatred becomes the new normal.
So it was with horror - but maybe not surprise - when the Trump Twitter feed was observed earlier today Retweeting videos (plural) posted by Jayda Fransen, deputy leader of far-right Britain First, in whose name Labour MP Jo Cox was murdered last year. That’s Britain First, a bunch of rabble-rousing fascists and criminals with a nationwide following of little more than a thousand hard-core fans. And the videos were fakes.
The move was picked up immediately. Hope Not Hate told “Donald Trump just retweeted Jayda Fransen, deputy leader of hate group Britain first and notorious anti-Muslim activist”. BuzzFeed News confirmed “President Trump just shared several anti-Muslim tweets written by the deputy leader of a far-right UK group”. Their man Jim Waterson added “One of the Britain First videos shared by Trump was removed from the internet by Dutch police in May, reports @ikran. And possibly doesn't feature a migrant”.
There was more. Brendan Cox, widower of the murdered MP, observed “Trump has legitimised the far right in his own country, now he’s trying to do it in ours. Spreading hatred has consequences & the President should be ashamed of himself”, to which the Guardian’s Marina Hyde added “Disgraceful and tragic that a man whose wife's murder was preceded by repeated shouts of ‘Britain First’ should have to point this out. Solidarity with the Coxes; shame upon shame for Trump”. And yet more.
Ms Fransen triumphantly Tweeted “THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, DONALD TRUMP, HAS RETWEETED THREE OF DEPUTY LEADER JAYDA FRANSEN'S TWITTER VIDEOS! DONALD TRUMP HIMSELF HAS RETWEETED THESE VIDEOS AND HAS AROUND 44 MILLION FOLLOWERS! GOD BLESS YOU TRUMP! GOD BLESS AMERICA!” while Miles King was not surprised: “I'm not sure why anyone's surprised that Trump endorsed the Fascists at Britain First. What do they think Bannon and Gorka are - Socialists?” Meanwhile, one Trump fan was aghast.
A horrified Piers Morgan tried to intervene: “Good morning, Mr President @realDonaldTrump - what the hell are you doing retweeting a bunch of unverified videos by Britain First, a bunch of disgustingly racist far-right extremists? Please STOP this madness & undo your retweets”. Next he’ll tell us he didn’t realise Trump was a bigot.
And Battersea bedroom dweller Paul Watson of InfoWars mused “Yeah, someone might want to tell whoever is running Trump's Twitter account this morning that retweeting Britain First is not great optics”. The President’s brain is still missing. No change there, then.