Shortly after US President Donald Trump announced the passing of his brother Robert, 3 years his younger, the hashtag #WrongTrump was launched on Twitter, quickly climbing to the top and drawing the ire of conservatives. Trump was castigated on social media after the death of his younger brother.
The president announced the passing of his brother Robert, also a real estate developer and business executive, on Saturday night.
Trump announces brother’s death with heavy heart
“It is with heavy heart that I share that my wonderful brother, Robert, peacefully passed away tonight. He was not just my brother, he was my best friend,” Trump said in a short statement.
The announcement comes just a day after the president paid a visit to his brother, who was being treated at a New York City medical center. Trump reportedly spent around 45 minutes inside the facility before hopping on a helicopter and flying to Bedminster, New Jersey.
Robert Trump, who at 71 was younger than the 74-year-old president, was a business executive and real estate developer. Unlike his reality-TV-star brother, Robert Trump shunned the limelight.
President Trump made an emotional visit to see his ailing brother on Friday at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center before going to his golf club at Bedminster, New Jersey for the weekend.
Robert was the youngest of Fred and Mary Anne Trump’s five children, and was born two years after his brother Donald.
The eldest of the children, Fred Jr, died in 1981.
Trump supporters furious
The president was expected to attend the funeral, an aide said. He has a busy travel schedule in coming days with plans to visit four battleground states as part of his re-election campaign.
The cause of death was not revealed. Trump told reporters on Friday that his brother was “having a hard time” with an undisclosed illness. A source familiar with the situation said the brother had been on blood thinners.
ABC News had reported that Robert Trump was hospitalised in the intensive care unit at Mount Sinai hospital in New York for more than a week in June.
That same month, Robert Trump won a temporary restraining order against his and the president’s niece, Mary Trump, to stop her from publishing a tell-all book that offered an unflattering look of the US president and his family. Social media, as well as some conventional media outlets, had touched on the controversy regarding Trump and his niece.
A state supreme court judge in Poughkeepsie, New York later denied a request to stop publication and cancelled the temporary restraining order.
Robert Trump had said the book, Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man, would violate a confidentiality agreement tied to the estate of his father Fred Trump Sr, who died in 1999.
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The news of Robert’s passing quickly spread on Twitter, with many sending prayers and condolences to the president’s family. However, not everybody was ready to cast aside political animosity, as #WrongTrump shot to the top of Twitter’s US trends in no time.
Little was known about Robert’s condition and the nature of his sickness. After leaving the hospital, Trump told the media that he had “a wonderful brother” and that they have had “a great relationship for a long time.”
Trump supporters were up in arms over the trend. Former Republican congressional candidate from California DeAnna Lorraine called it “unbelievably disgusting.”
One commenter went as far as to say that she would now jump aboard “the Trump Train” after seeing #WrongTrump trending. Social media was ablaze with what was considered offensive comments about Trump and his family.
“The fact that ‘The Wrong Trump’ is trending after the President’s brother died tells you everything you need to know about the left,” another tweeted.
The Washington Post, known for making eyebrow-raising political statements with obituaries in the past, came under fire for Robert Trump’s, which mentions his legal wranglings with niece Mary Trump over her tell-all memoir in the headline.
“Robert Trump, younger brother of President Trump who filed lawsuit against niece, dies at 71,” the title, blasted by Trump supporters as tone-deaf, reads.
“This headline, on an ‘obituary’ no less, is sick. WaPo should be ashamed of itself,” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) tweeted.
RT with additional input by GVS News Desk