Donald Trump has shared a video showing a supporter yelling “white power” at protesters in a Florida retirement community.
“Thank you to the great people of The Villages,” the president said in a post to his nearly 83 million Twitter followers on Sunday morning.
“The Radical Left Do Nothing Democrats will Fall in the Fall. Corrupt Joe is shot. See you soon!!!”
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The video shows a series of clips of protesters on either side of a parade of golf carts with drivers holding American flags and signs supporting the president’s re-election campaign.
In the first clip, a man in a “Veterans for Trump” shirt pump his fist and yells “white power”.
The president has frequently been accused of courting white nationalists and in recent days has threatened Black Lives Matter demonstrators with violence and arrests.
He similarly called neo-Nazis at a Unite the Right rally in 2017 “very fine people” while condemning violence “on both sides” after a white supremacist killed an antiracist demonstrator.
The video was removed from his timeline several hours later on Sunday. In a statement, a White House spokesperson claimed that the president “did not hear the one statement made on the video. What he did see was tremendous enthusiasm from his many supporters.”
His video post on Sunday followed the announcement of federal charges against at least four protesters who attempted to take down a statue of Andrew Jackson in Washington DC after the president signed an executive order “to ensure that any person or group that destroys or vandalizes a monument, memorial, or statue is prosecuted to the fullest extent” despite already-existing federal law covering the same offences.
In a string of messages on Sunday morning, the president criticised Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, shared a post from a QAnon conspiracy theorist about a California congressman, and claimed “nobody briefed” him about Russia‘s “so-called attacks” on US troops, following reports that Moscow offered bounties to militants in Afghanistan to kill American troops.
Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, who was interviewed by CNN moments after the president shared the post, said: “I’ve not seen that video nor that tweet, but obviously neither the president, his administration nor I would do anything to be supportive of white supremacy or anything that would support discrimination of any kind.”
Asked whether he believes it was a mistake that the president shared the video, Secretary Azar declined to comment and added that “obviously the president and I and his whole administration would stand against any acts of white supremacy.”
In a post sharing the president’s tweet, Republican anti-Trump group The Lincoln Project said “at least we know the Trump campaign finally found a new slogan”.
The president scrapped plans to visit his Bedminster, New Jersey golf course on Friday and announced he would remain at the White House to “make sure LAW & ORDER is enforced” after the Jackson statue was targeted by antiracist demonstrators last week. On Saturday, the president golfed at his Virginia club.