President Trump managed to simultaneously slam and praise reports in the New York Times and CNN of White House aides reaching out to South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) last year to add his face to Mount Rushmore.
According to an unnamed Republican official who spoke to the New York Times report on Sunday, a White House official contacted Noem’s office last year asking about the process involved in adding another face to the monument. A source told the Times that upon Trump’s arrival in South Dakota for his Fourth of July celebrations at the monument last month, Noem greeted Trump with a four-foot replica that included his face on it.
Following the Times’ report, CNN noted that Noem told the Argus Leader in 2018 that the President told her during an Oval Office meeting that it’s his “dream” to have his face featured on Mount Rushmore — alongside Presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt.
The President responded to reports of his Mount Rushmore “dream” in a Sunday night tweet. Although he predictably continued airing his grievances against both the Times and CNN over their reporting – claiming that he “never suggested” his face getting added to the monument — Trump couldn’t help but hype the report, saying the inclusion of his face on the national monument “sounds like a good idea.”
This is Fake News by the failing @nytimes & bad ratings @CNN. Never suggested it although, based on all of the many things accomplished during the first 3 1/2 years, perhaps more than any other Presidency, sounds like a good idea to me! https://t.co/EHrA9yUsAw
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 10, 2020
Last month, Trump delivered a speech in front of Mount Rushmore that railed against the left as pressure to tear down structures paying tribute to racist figures in the wake of George Floyd’s death swelled this summer.
“This monument will never be desecrated,” Trump said, during his Fourth of July weekend event at Mount Rushmore. “These heroes will never be defaced. Their legacy will never, ever be destroyed. Their achievements will never be forgotten. And Mount Rushmore will stand forever as an eternal tribute to our forefathers and to our freedom.”