During an interview about whether there is significant LGBT support for President Trump, Eric Trump said, “I’m a part of that [LGBT] community, and we love the man.”
Jaws dropped across Twitter after the clip was shared by Media Matters’ Bobby Lewis, leaving hundreds asking, “Did Eric Trump just come out on Fox News?”
Here’s what you need to know:
Trump Made the Statement in the Context of Talking About His Father’s Supporters & May Have Been Trying to Quote Them
In context, it appears Trump may have been trying to quote some of his father’s LGBTQ supporters, even though that was not made clear when he said he was “part of that community.”
Fox & Friends host Ainsley Earhardt brought up an op-ed piece by conservative writer Brett Stephens that was published in Tuesday’s New York Times called “Meet a Secret Trump Voter.” In the column, Stephens said his friend Chris, a lesbian, plans to vote for Donald Trump based on the economy and the level of crime she says is rising in her neighborhood.
“She doesn’t want to use her last name, and there are a lot of people that are voting for your dad who aren’t admitting it,” Earhardt said.
“It was Brett Stephens, who’s been a critic of your dad, who wrote the editorial,” co-host Brian Kilmeade added.
Earhardt asked Trump if he was “counting” on so-called “secret Trump voters” like the one Stephens described in his column, and Trump said he indeed was.
“Ainsley, that person’s there, I’m telling you,” Trump said. “I’m telling you, I see it every day. The LGBT community, they are incredible, how they come out in full force for my father every single day. I am part of that community, and we love the man. Thank you for protecting our neighborhoods and thank you for protecting our cities.”
Eric Trump is married to Lara Trump, née Yunaska, and has two children with her. Trump was likely trying to quote one of his father’s gay supporters. However, that did not stop rampant speculation and snark online.
Many People Reacted With Disbelief, Including Actor George Takei
Lewis himself, who originally shared the clip, kicked the trend off, saying, “Eric Trump coming out is not the birthday gift this homosexual wanted.”
Many LGBT Twitter users made it clear that they either did not believe Trump or that he was not welcome in their community.
“Eric Trump saying he’s ‘part of the LGBT’ community is like me saying I’m part of the fantasy football community,” actor and gay icon George Takei said. “I might think I know what a ‘tight end’ and a ‘wide receiver’ are, but I would be sorely mistaken.”
Journalist Yashar Ali thought it was clear Trump was quoting someone but said he was “in the mood for chaos…so carryon.”
As of yet, neither Eric Trump nor Donald Trump has addressed the trending Twitter topic. Heavy reached out to the Trump Organization for comment but did not immediately hear back.