Last night, 9NEWS’ Brandon Rittiman examined the ad from pro-Hillary Clinton SuperPAC Priorities USA now in heavy rotation in Colorado, hitting presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump for “mocking” a reporter with a disability.
The verdict? Yes, Donald Trump really is that big of an asshole:
Supporters of Hillary Clinton are spending millions to try and undermine Donald Trump before next month’s national conventions. The ad getting the most airtime in Colorado right now doesn’t go after Trump on policy, but attacks his character instead…
It features a couple with a disabled child highlighting a speech in which Donald Trump appears to make fun of a reporter with a disability.
“When I saw Donald Trump mock a disabled person, I was just shocked,” says Lauren Glaros before the ad cuts to a clip of Trump making a serious of awkward hand gestures and speaking in a strained voice…
It is true that the reporter, Serge Kovaleski of the New York Times, has a joint condition called arthrogryposis, which causes his right hand to rest held up in a bent position.
Since Trump’s comments and gesticulations about New York Times reporter Serge Kovaleski, Trump has claimed he wasn’t mocking Kovaleski’s disability, and didn’t even know the reporter to mock him–a claim that basically no one believes, since as Rittiman reports, Trump and Kovaleski have known each other since the 1980s.
To the bigger claim, that Trump was mocking Kovaleski’s condition, we rate this attack as “fair.”
If you compare the pose that Trump made you can see it’s quite similar to Kovaleski’s condition.
Obviously, this is not a weighty question of policy. But it’s very smart for supporters of Hillary Clinton to zero in on universally distasteful character issues like mocking disabled people–in order to build an emotional wall (pun intended) between persuadable voters and Trump’s campaign. Trump’s lack of personal likability is at least as important to drive home in the public consciousness as his mindless demagogic agenda, since for so many low-information voters, an emotive sense of likability makes all the difference.
And from macro to micro, the more of Trump there is to see, the less there is to like.