During a press briefing on Wednesday, August 19, President Trump offered his support for QAnon conspiracy theorists, a group the FBI has classified as a "domestic terrorism threat."
Asked about the alt-right conspiracy theory, which claims without any evidence that President Trump has been sent to Washington to fight a secret Democratic cabal of pedophiles and cannibals, Trump responded:
"I don't know much about the movement, other than I understand they like me very much, which I appreciate."
"... I have heard that it is gaining in popularity … I've heard these are people that love our country."
Trump on QAnon: "I don't know much about the movement other than, I understand, they like me very much which I appr… https://t.co/tN7PVArhWF— Kyle Griffin (@Kyle Griffin)1597875332.0
Trump is flirting with the dangerous and unhinged QAnon conspiracy theory. After being told what it is, Trump says… https://t.co/EKfrLE8X0z— DNC War Room (@DNC War Room)1597877213.0
All that matters is that they like him.
"I understand they like me very much, which I appreciate." "These are people that love our country." — Trump on QAn… https://t.co/JKLQTRTjuE— Pod Save America (@Pod Save America)1597875693.0
A lot has happened in the last few hours. Do not let this be forgotten: "Donald Trump Just Praised QAnon, Which Th… https://t.co/aHDml26HMT— Kyle Griffin (@Kyle Griffin)1597895124.0
Even when a reporter informed Trump that the conspiracy theorists believe he is "secretly saving the world" from a "Satanic cult of pedophiles and cannibals," Trump seemed unfazed.
"I haven't heard that, but is that supposed to be a bad thing or a good thing? If I can help save the world from problems, I'm willing to do it."
Trump refuses to denounce one of the most toxic and dangerous conspiracies in America. He embraces QAnon's support… https://t.co/ISvm23MjY3— Kyle Griffin (@Kyle Griffin)1597875914.0
Many online noted that Trump's language came dangerously close to support of the dangerous group.
I’m done. I thought saving my party was a noble cause, as long as Trump was defeated. I WAS WRONG. After Trump’s fu… https://t.co/BfGjlZAWME— USED TO BE G.O.P. (@USED TO BE G.O.P.)1597876262.0
Donald Trump 'Happy to Help' Fight Pedophiles and Cannibals https://t.co/C8J68YCtXA— Jack Posobiec (@Jack Posobiec)1597880122.0
Oh my God. Asked about the Qanon movement Trump says he doesn’t know much about them except that they like him very… https://t.co/QN0mnFCnBT— Tom Nichols (@Tom Nichols)1597874810.0
Online, the President was immediately condemned for his remarks, which he made just before former President Obama claimed at the DNC that Trump was fundamentally unfit for his office.
I am watching Trump talk about Qanon and how great it is that they love him, and all I can think of right now is th… https://t.co/tbju7GH4pG— Tom Nichols (@Tom Nichols)1597874965.0
“He thinks if something aligns with his personal interests, it is good. If it doesn’t align... it is bad,” says for… https://t.co/rYut1JsBe4— New Day (@New Day)1597926248.0
FBI: The deranged QAnon conspiracy theory poses a potential domestic terrorism threat Combating Terrorism Center a… https://t.co/msNc98Hx9d— Jake Tapper (@Jake Tapper)1597877025.0
As always, President Trump cares more about how popular he is than what is good for America.
Trump on QAnon: "I understand they like me very much, which I appreciate. These are people that love our country."… https://t.co/YzMqUqNz61— Joshua A. Geltzer (@Joshua A. Geltzer)1597880807.0
The President should be denouncing dangerous conspiracy theories like QAnon, not excitedly accepting their praise. President Trump seems fundamentally unable to understand this.