The Lincoln Project has deleted a tweet claiming a Republican delegate called former President Barack Obama a “monkey,” but that hasn’t stopped the Democrats from accusing President Donald Trump of racism.
The outfit, staffed by former Republican operatives now fully endorsing Democrat candidate Joe Biden in the November presidential election, tweeted that Trump “relished” someone at the Republican National Convention calling Obama a monkey. The semi-virtual convention began Monday in Charlotte, North Carolina, and featured a short speech by Trump.
The Lincoln Project has taken down its tweet alleging someone at the GOP convention said “monkey” about Obama, despite the audio, after initially defending it. pic.twitter.com/eAizpbkhGS
— Aaron Blake (@AaronBlake) August 24, 2020
The tweet was quickly deleted amid counter-claims that the heckler clearly yelled “Spygate” – a reference to what Trump was talking about at the time – but not before it spread like wildfire among the Democrats and some credulous journalists.
Even when disavowing the original claim, Resistance activists maintained that Trump’s reaction made sense only if the heckler had been racist.
Deleted this tweet, where a crowd member yells what sounds like “monkey” or “spygate” after Trump mentions Obama. Trump stops and says, “Be nice,” before grinning and saying, “Only in North Carolina,” which would be an odd reaction to “spygate.” Still, not 100% sure so I deleted. pic.twitter.com/z9ZdOOdOpW
— Brian Tyler Cohen (@briantylercohen) August 24, 2020
The claim was so outrageous, even Trump critic Ann Coulter felt obligated to chime in with a rebuttal.
1. Only liberals heard “monkey” and 2. Only liberals hear the word “monkey” and think BLACK PEOPLE! https://t.co/93O1fTwU7f
— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) August 24, 2020
Libertarian radio host Michael Malice actually recorded the audio of the moment and slowed it down, proving the heckler had said “spygate.”
I slowed down the audio of the guy they are claiming yelled out “Monkey”
Slowed down it sounds even clearer that he was in fact yelling “Spygate”https://t.co/FC8iVdWEzg
— Michael Malice (@michaelmalice) August 24, 2020
It was too late, though, as “Monkey” became a runaway trend on Twitter.
Idle hands on social media have long argued over optical illusions, from “what color is the dress” in 2015 to the more recent color riddles featuring footwear. In 2018, the debate escalated to auditory confusion between “Laurel” and “Yanny.”
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