On Thursday, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA) took to the House floor to deliver a speech celebrating Americans with disabilities.
But the part of her speech that is making waves is the moment she decided to sling mud at President Donald Trump.
Waters stood next to an image that became a favorite talking point during the 2016 presidential election. The image: then-candidate Trump allegedly mocking disabled reporter, Serge Kovaleski, during a campaign rally in South Carolina.
Standing next to the photo, Waters said, in part:
“Yesterday was the 27th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. It is a day to reflect on how people with disabilities are treated in our society.
Our president indicated to us what he thinks about people with disabilities long before he was elected when he mocked a disabled reporter.
Mocking the disabled is rude and insensitive and it sends a terrible message to our children.”
There’s just one problem with Waters’ analysis: It’s not accurate.
First of all, Trump denied mocking the disabled reporter. The motion he made that plastered over headlines in the press everywhere is a motion he has made before. And then-presidential candidate Trump at the time explained it was a gesture he made to imitate someone who is “flustered.”
Independent Journal Review pointed out a few of the holes in the accusations against Trump during the heat of the presidential election.
In February 2016, he used a similar motion to imitate Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX).
During a CNN interview with Larry King, Trump made a similar kind of gesture:
The Washington Examiner‘s Eddie Scarry also pointed out a detail that some people overlook about Kovaleski:
If Trump’s purpose was to mock-imitate Kovaleski, anyone watching would have never known it; and not just because no one would know who Kovaleski is, if the media hadn’t manufactured a controversy.
The media would have everyone believe Kovaleski has Parkinson’s disease or at least Restless Leg Syndrome.
Anyone can search “Serge Kovaleski” on YouTube and see videos of the reporter. He doesn’t jerk his arms around, in fact, because his mobility is limited. He’s still.
Nice try though, Waters.