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Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Trump and the R-Word

 In The Politics of Autism, I discuss the issue's role in campaign politics.   In the 2016 campaign, a number of posts discussed Trump's bad record on disability issues more generally.   As his actions as president indicate, he has little use for Americans with disabilities.
David Choi at Business Insider:
But audio recordings of previous interviews contradict Trump's claim that he never called anyone "mentally retarded." In an interview with shock jock Howard Stern from 2004, Trump claimed to recall a conversation with his golf instructor:

"I have a golf pro who's mentally retarded," Trump said, according to the Huffington Post. "I mean he's really not a smart guy."

In another interview with Stern in 2004, Trump decried a "negative" news report that scrutinized his financial dealings and threatened to "sue their ass off."

"I was criticized in one magazine, where the writer was retarded," Trump said at the time. "He said 'Donald Trump put up $7 million ... why isn't Donald Trump putting up more money?"

In 2016, the Daily Beast also reported that Trump implied actress Marlee Matlin, a former contestant on his show "The Celebrity Apprentice," was mentally handicapped because she was deaf.

One source told The Beast that Trump, who wrote "asinine" notes during tapings of the show, once wrote: "Marlee, is she retarded??"

"[Trump] would make fun of her voice," a person who worked on the show's set said to The Beast. "Like, to make it seem like she was mentally not there? [It] sounded like he got a real kick out of it. It was really upsetting."