Did Trump Say He Hoped George Floyd, Looking Down From Heaven, Is Happy About Job Numbers?

Reporting on President Trump’s press conference Friday, several journalists and news outlets claimed the president said he hoped George Floyd is looking down from heaven and is happy about improving job numbers. A number of news outlets including ABC News, Business Insider, the  Independent, and the  New York Daily News also made the claim in news stories they published about the press conference.


A conservative media critic who tweets under the handle @AGHamilton29 quickly flagged the claims and pointed out further examples of journalists and news outlets making this claim. 

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Comments (41)
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  • How did this happen? I'm used to this sort of thing happening when people disagree on how to interpret his word salad, but this seems unusual in that the context makes it clear Trump wasn't talking about jobs numbers at that point.

  • I'm guessing that saying "Mr. Floyd" or "George Floyd" was too difficult. Why not just refer to him as you'd address a child?

  • One of the recurrent themes on the Dispatch podcasts is that the election isn't Trump vs. The Media, and that the acts of journalists are less important than journalists. I agree, and as much as I get irritated by the New York Times and its ilk it won't make me vote Trump or go MAGA.

    But stuff like this suggests that mainstream, respected media outlets are being willfully dishonest. Are these actions less serious than the police beating peaceful protesters? Absolutely.

    But garbage like this does hurt democratic liberal discourse, because its subsuming the news with willfully dishonest propaganda. It's hard to see how this was a good-faith mistake or interpretation of an ambiguous statement.

  • I go to one place for the Truth--The Dispatch

  • Your services are indispensable. Thank you!

  • And this is what I mean. Jonah will love this reference... but, you know how in the beginning of Monty Python and the Holy Grail...


    "Strange women lying in ponds, distributing swords is no basis for a system of government!"

    Now, this is exactly like that, but almost completely different.

    "Using twitter is no basis for actual journalism!"

    Okay, it worked out better in my head.

    But the sentiment is legit! And, I think all social media should go away.

    Gonna get serious here for a second. The world was a far, far better place before every person on the planet (and their myriad trolling sock puppet accounts) had just as much say or impact on the news as people who legitimately work for it, or, better, yet, have legal or monetary ramifications if they go around spewing their tribal, division causing, society wrecking, bile.

  • His words, at best, are typically tone deaf and clumsy, but if media outlets think trying to make them look worse when Trump's most faithful supporters thrive on call-outs and gotchas like this, then they're truly, deeply, hopelessly as tone deaf and clumsy as Trump himself.

  • Trump believes the “greatest thing that can happen for race relations is a strong US economy.” As he was signing the bill he explained that a strong economy was going to help African Americans and listed others groups as well...so sort of the jobs numbers.
    Trump equates money with power so if the US has the strongest economy then everyone has the ability to be more equal. I do not think he buys into any systemic racism arguments. He still was saying to “dominate the streets” and just yesterday shared Dowd’s letter calling the protesters terrorists.
    So I’m not sure you can make the argument that Trump believes something happened today that would make George Floyd happy in the sphere of “equality under the law” except the unemployment rate fell from 14.7 to 13.3.

    1. Well said.

  • Oh, boy. "The lame stream media" got something insignificant wrong so we are going to dunk on them? Can we look into whether tear gas was used to clear the church? Were the protestors really non-violent? Who is looting? Who is shooting police? Maybe we should revisit the placement of MLK's bust again. C'mon guys and gal's - let's try and stick with the stuff that matters. I get it. "The Press" is so anti-Trump that they hastily report half truths against him. I do get it. But, just because one thing like this is misreported, doesn't mean it cancels out the multiple other outrageous things the president actually did say this week. On top of everything else, even in the proper context, the statement is borderline outrageous. The Dispatch is much better than this.

    1. As someone whose blood pressure tends to rise when the President starts speaking, I appreciate the fact check so I do not have to listen to him. Mr. Trump was giddy about the jobs report. While his comments about George Floyd were not directly tied to the jobs report, I feel like the mere mention of how "happy" he should be the day after the memorial service does nothing to help and seems to be continually just about Mr. Trump. He's happy so Mr. Floyd should be happy. Just don't see too many people going through the visitation line at the funeral home and when you get to Mr. Floyd's mother you tell her how happy George should be...

    2. I dunno, if there was ever an opportunity to chip away at Trump's base it's right now. There's a risk these types of unforced errors will remind any wavering Trump voters how the nefarious liberal media is "the real enemy of the people."

      This administration excels at shifting attention from a mountain of their own bad behavior to a comparatively minor error on the part of their adversaries. Why give Trump that opportunity if you can avoid it?

      1. Alex - Totally agree. However, I have MUCH more respect for the readers of the Dispatch than I do for the "general population". I am guessing that any Trump supporters subscribing to The Dispatch are not supporters because they pay attention to unimportant stuff like this. Their support is likely with a clothes pin on their nose, because they feel that net/net, the positives outweigh the negatives. They aren't looking to defend the irrational, dumb stuff. They know EXACTLY what Trump is. They have evaluated him in his entirety and concluded the world is better off with him as president. I disagree with their conclusion, but I COULD respect them if I thought their reasoning was not based on delusion. Nobody who is NOT thoughtful reads The Dispatch.

        1. Probably true, but I bet there are Dispatch readers who saw all those Tweets and were tempted to unknowingly propagate an improperly contextualized awful Trump comment.

          Thanks to Alec they can retweet it was the properly calibrated disgust.

    3. There was a lengthy discussion of whether tear gas was used to clear the church on The Dispatch podcast.

      1. With an avatar like that, I’m going to be compelled to like every comment.

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