President Donald Trump held a Labor Day press conference at the White House on Monday and gave a speech that largely ticked off all the boxes: False claims about how well he’s handling the pandemic, rants about China “ripping off” the U.S., and fearmongering about “Democrat-run” cities.
At the end of the presser, Trump expanded on his threat to somehow yank funding from public schools that incorporate the New York Times’ 1619 Project, which focuses on the legacy of slavery, in their lesson plans.
“I’m not a believer in cancel culture,” the President told reporters, invoking a phrase that has essentially lost all meaning as conservatives rail against moves toward social progress. In a blaring dog whistle, Trump claimed “we” grew up with “a certain history,” and accused the 1619 Project of “trying to change our history.”
TPM Prime members can read our analysis of the GOP’s attempts to weaponize the phrase “cancel culture” in the face of civil rights movements here.
The press conference comes amid fallout over the Atlantic’s report last week alleging that Trump mocked fallen soldiers as “losers” and “suckers” in 2018, and that he did not want to visit the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris because he was worried the rain would ruin his hair. The President and the White House have denied the report.