Barack Obama Reportedly Decried Trump’s ‘Kung Flu’ Remarks: ‘Shocks and Pisses Me Off’
Former President Barack Obama reportedly called out President Donald Trump’s use of the terms “kung flu” and “China Virus” during a private fundraiser for 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden on Thursday.
According to the New York Times, Obama said, “I don’t want a country in which the president of the United States is actively trying to promote anti-Asian sentiment and thinks it’s funny. I don’t want that. That still shocks and pisses me off.”
In the article published on Sunday, the New York Times also reported that Obama had told an aide Trump has “no idea what he’s doing,” after a meeting between the two in 2016, and that Obama has been “so determined to avoid uttering the new president’s name that one aide jokingly suggested they refer to him as ‘He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named’ — Harry Potter’s archenemy, Lord Voldemort.”
President Trump has repeatedly used the term “kung flu” to refer to the coronavirus, drawing condemnation from former 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang and CBS News White House correspondent Weijia Jiang — who said a White House staffer used the term in front of her.
In March, President Trump was also confronted by ABC News reporter Cecilia Vega on his use of the term “China Virus.”
“Why do you keep calling this the Chinese virus?” asked Vega. “There are reports of dozens of incidents of bias against Chinese Americans in this country. Your own aide, Secretary Azar says he does not use this term. He says ethnicity does not cause the virus. Why do you keep using this? A lot of people think it’s racist.”
Trump replied, “Because it comes from China… It’s not racist at all. No, not at all. It comes from China, that’s why. It comes from China. I want to be accurate.”
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