Every once in long while, Donald Trump retweets one of his own supporters who says something flattering about him. On the surface these retweets appear to be randomly chosen in nature. But upon closer inspection, almost without exception, the people he chooses to retweet have just finished tweeting something horribly offensive. This time Trump retweeted someone who had just finished making a rape joke about Hillary Clinton.
On the morning of October 19th, Trump nonsensically tweeted “Workers of firm involved with the discredited and Fake Dossier take the 5th. Who paid for it, Russia, the FBI or the Dems (or all)?” Of the thousands upon thousands of replies he received from his own supporters, he decided to retweet one from a user named “missK” who had replied with “He’s done more in 9 months then obama did in8 yrs.” That was an absurd false claim in its own right, but it wasn’t the problem.
It turns out that same “missK” account had just finished tweeting “I’m not saying Hillary is ugly, but all of her male friends are rapist[s] and she has never been raped.” Trump’s supporters are among the most awful people in the history of the human race, so it’s not shocking that many of them are tweeting horrifying things. But when Trump “randomly” selects a supporter to retweet, he manages to nearly always choose someone who has just gotten done tweeting something horribly offensive. It’s consistent enough that it suggests Trump is purposely retweeting generic messages of support from certain accounts, as a way of steering his own base back toward the offensive tweet previously posted by that account.
Come to think of it, the only times Donald Trump has retweeted accounts that haven’t just posted something offensive, it’s turned out he was retweeting fake Russian bot accounts. That can’t have been a coincidence either.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report