Donald Trump's ‘bloodbath’ comment misquoted? Maga on the defensive; Elon Musk posts 'full context' - Hindustan Times
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Donald Trump's ‘bloodbath’ comment misquoted? Maga on the defensive; Elon Musk posts 'full context'

BySumanti Sen
Mar 18, 2024 12:15 PM IST

Former president Donald Trump recently warned that there will be a “bloodbath” if he loses in November, triggering a row

Former president Donald Trump recently warned that there will be a “bloodbath” if he loses in November, triggering a row. While many blasted him for his comments, some came to defend him, including Elon Musk and former chief of staff to Trump, Mick Mulvaney.

Donald Trump's ‘bloodbath’ comment has triggered a row (AP/PTI)(AP)
Donald Trump's ‘bloodbath’ comment has triggered a row (AP/PTI)(AP)

What did Donald Trump say?

Trump made the remarks while campaigning for Senate candidate Bernie Moreno in Ohio. The rally was held by Buckeye Values PAC, a group that backs Senate candidate Bernie Moreno.

Using the stage, Trump said, ““We’re going to put a 100 percent tariff on every single car that comes across the line, and you’re not going to be able to sell those guys if I get elected … Now, if I don’t get elected, it’s going to be a bloodbath for the whole — that’s going to be the least of it. It’s going to be a bloodbath for the country.”

As the former president’s comments drew criticism, his campaign dismissed claims that he was talking about violence across the country if he loses in 2024. It argued that he was only talking about the destruction of the auto industry.

The video of his remarks went viral on social media, following which Joe Biden's campaign released a statement, calling him a “loser” at the ballot box in 2020 who then “doubles down on his threats of political violence.”

Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi blasted Trump too, saying, “We just have to win this election, because he’s even predicting a bloodbath. What does that mean? He’s going to exact a bloodbath?”

Donald Trump defended

Among those who defended Trump was Musk, saying people should use X to avoid being “misled by the legacy media.” He suggested that the “legacy media” outlets simply took Trump’s comments out of context.

Musk shared a post by a user saying that the “media is lying about Donald Trump with this narrative about a “bloodbath” if he loses the election,” captioning it, “Legacy media lies”.

Musk also shared a post which reads, “if legacy media journalists don’t like being seen as disingenuous and untrustworthy hacks, i think maybe it would help if they stopped lying and misleading for their own agendas all the time and actually exhibited integrity”.

In a separate post, alongside a meme of grey cartoon characters with a speech bubble saying “bloodbath,” he wrote, “Easy to tell who is an NPC today”. NPC means “nonplayable character.”

Sharing another post that called out the media for its coverage, Musk wrote, “Over time the newspapers have been fading away in relevance. Not gone, just as writing and mailing paper letters still happens, but no longer the way most people know what’s going on.”

Meanwhile, Mulvaney said he is disappointed in the media for failing to add context while reporting on Trump’s “bloodbath” comment. “I didn’t realize this until I went to do the research. It’s a conversation about Chinese automakers trying to use Mexico to get cars into the United States,” Mulvaney told NewsNation Prime. He, too, insisted that Trump was talking about the American automotive industry. However he did admit that Trump’s choice of words may not have been appropriate. “The language itself is unpresidential,” he said.

Rep. Mike Turner was also among those who believe Trump spoke about the auto industry, as was Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.). “With regard to the autoworkers that he was talking to, he is showing them or he’s telling them what has been an economic downturn for them,” Rounds told host Dana Bash on CNN’s ‘State of the Union.’

Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) said while speaking on NBC’s ‘Meet the Press,’ "You could also look at the definition of bloodbath and it could be an economic disaster. And so if he’s speaking about the auto industry, in particular in Ohio, then you can take it a little bit more context.”

Cassidy, however, also admitted that the way Trump spoke does give people a reason to criticise him. “The general tone of the speech is why many Americans continue to wonder, ‘Should President Trump be president?’ That kind of rhetoric, it’s always on the edge, maybe doesn’t cross, maybe does depending upon your perspective,” he said

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