Eric Trump has baffled pretty much everyone by going on Fox News and appearing to declare that he’s “part of the LGBT community”.
The president’s second-oldest and second-worst son, who has two children by his wife Lara Trump, was discussing support for his father within the LGBT+ community on Fox and Friends on Monday when he made the comments.
Watch: Eric Trump reacts to report on president’s taxes
Eric Trump: ‘I’m part of that community.’
Eric Trump said: “The LGBT+ community, they are incredible. You should see how they come out in full force for my father every single day.
“I’m part of that community, and we love the man, and thank you for protecting our neighbourhoods and thank you for protecting our cities.”
The suggestion that Eric Trump is “part of the LGBT community” led to extreme confusion on Twitter.
Bobby Lewis of Media Matters, who shared the clip, wrote: “Eric Trump coming out is not the birthday gift this homosexual wanted.”
Eric Trump: "The LGBT community, they are incredible. And you should see how they come out in full force for my father every single day. I'm part of that community, and we love the man." pic.twitter.com/hl51ftW8l2
— Bobby Lewis (@revrrlewis) September 29, 2020
Former Drag Race star Shea Coulee wrote: “Did I just hear that correctly?”
Meanwhile, gay former state senator Jim Dabakis quipped: “Is it some kind of weird new aversion therapy?”
Another user quipped: “We, the gay committee, have had an emergency meeting and we have rejected Eric Trump’s application.”
The confusion even led to Eric Trump’s Wikipedia entry being updated, suggesting: ” On September 29, 2020, Eric came out as a member of the LGBT community.”
However, others have a more plausible explanation for the comments – that Eric Trump misspoke, and was actually quoting a supportive LGBT+ person who had previously told him, “I’m part of that community, and we love the man.”
As one response put it: “Eric Trump isn’t coming out here. He’s just an idiot who sounds like he is.”
Ok, Eric Trump isn't coming out here. He's just an idiot who sounds like he is.
Anyway, the idea that LGBTQ people — only 14% of whom supported Trump in '16 — will now vote for Trump after he's stripped them of rights but b/c their 401k might be doing better is ludicrous. https://t.co/o1KrzQITia
— Michelangelo Signorile, subscribe to my newsletter (@MSignorile) September 29, 2020
Unscientific polling conducted on gay hook-up apps has suggested that Trump has more support among their userbase than he had when facing Hillary Clinton in 2016 – but the informal polls are hardly rigorous or representative of the entire LGBT+ community.
Fox and Friends was responding to profile of anonymous lesbian Trump voter.
Eric Trump’s comments came in response to a New York Times profile of a “secret Trump voter” – an anonymous lesbian who lives in New York City and is in the closet about her support for Trump.
The woman, Chris, claimed that “being a lesbian who’s voting for Trump is like coming out of the closet again”, justifying her support for him by curiously citing “lower gas prices” – despite living in the hardly car-friendly Manhattan – and “double digit [gains] in my 401k” pension pot.
The minority support for Trump among some LGBT+ people comes despite the Trump administration’s systemic attempts to dismantle civil rights protections to LGBT+ people – not least demolishing the fragile Supreme Court majority on LGBT+ rights by pushing through another conservative justice.
In the past month alone, the Department of Justice has spearheaded efforts to undermine discrimination protections, intervening in a legal battle to defend the right to force out a Catholic school teacher based on his sexual orientation.
Meanwhile, housing and urban development secretary Ben Carson is still seeking to impose transphobic rules that will lead to discrimination in homeless shelters, while education secretary Betsy DeVos has been accused of “extorting” school districts into adopting anti-trans athletics policies with threats to withdraw funding.