'Cash grab': Knives out in TrumpWorld as his closest allies rage over his 'worthless' NFT stunt
Former President Donald Trump's "major announcement" that ended up being $99 non-fungible tokens (NFTs) has frustrated even his closest supporters, making him the target of ridicule online.
The cash grab had many of his opponents and supporters rolling their eyes, with some criticizing Trump for not focusing on his 2024 reelection campaign, and calling on him to fire the person who thought of the NFT idea.
\u201cSome of Trump's own aides were cringing at the release of the NFTs, which is diverting money that could be donated to the Trump campaign to Trump personally @MichaelCBender and me https://t.co/zf9NIRI5DU\u201d— Maggie Haberman (@Maggie Haberman) 1671144749
"I can't watch it again, make it stop," conservative host Steve Bannon said of the video of Trump promoting the NFTs on his podcast. "Anybody on the comms team and anybody at Mar-a-Lago — and I love the folks down there — but we're at war. They oughta be fired today."
Trump supporter John Cardillo took to Twitter to complain about the former president's "weird" announcement. "I supported Trump for years but this is ridiculous," he wrote on Thursday. "Pushing a worthless NFT for $99 a week before Christmas on the heels of the #FTX collapse is beyond wrong. Who advised him to do this?" Cardillo called the announcement "ridiculously tacky" on Twitter, adding that Trump "can't help himself in making these unforced errors."
\u201cI supported Trump for years but this is ridiculous.\n\nPushing a worthless NFT for $99 a week before Christmas on the heels of the #FTX collapse is beyond wrong. \n\nCalling it a \u201cMAJOR ANNOUNCEMENT\u201d is just weird. \n\nWho advised him to do this?\u201d— John Cardillo (@John Cardillo) 1671131986
Former Trump National Security Adviser Michael Flynn said on the conservative video hosting platform Rumble that he would fire whoever advised Trump "immediately."
"I can't believe I'm going to jail for an NFT salesman," tweeted far-right media personality Baked Alaska, who pleaded guilty to unlawfully protesting on Jan. 6.
Trump announced the cards on Truth Social, writing "AMERICA NEEDS A SUPERHERO." The sold-out NFTs featured images of Trump in a variety of muscular costumes posing in front of various backgrounds with MAGA iconography. Some cards feature the former president ripping off his shirt, or surrounded by raining gold bricks that read TRUMP.
Former Trump advisers Sebastian Gorka and Steve Cortes joined Bannon on his "War Room" podcast and agreed that the president should have stayed far away from this stunt.
"The president should not be involved with this," said Gorka. "Whoever wrote that pitch should be fired and should never be involved" in Trump's 2024 reelection campaign.
Far-right talk show host Ben Shapiro sarcastically mocked Trump's move, tweeting "Thank God, the digital trading cards are here. It was indeed a MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENT."
\u201cThank God, the digital trading cards are here. It was indeed a MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENT.\u201d— Ben Shapiro (@Ben Shapiro) 1671120460
Some also took the NFTs as a sign of Trump's political decline, including conservative streamer Tim Pool who tweeted that the former president is "basically retired."
\u201ctrump launches a campaign calling out the machine, mocking the establishment ruthlessly, slamming war\n\nhe continues in 2020 with expansion of sound policy, pulling troops out of the middle east, negotiating peace\n\nNow hes selling NFT's\n\nhomie basically retired\u201d— Tim Pool (@Tim Pool) 1671122486
"Demand improvement. Put the pom poms down," tweeted talk show host Jesse Kelly. "We need a better Trump."
\u201cTrump teasing a \u201cmajor announcement\u201d and then labeling his NFT \u201cmajor announcement\u201d only to have his hardcore fans act like that wasn\u2019t the real announcement is the perfect example what this thing has become.\n\nDemand improvement. Put the pom poms down. We need a better Trump.\u201d— Jesse Kelly (@Jesse Kelly) 1671136462
Even QAnon supporters had enough of Trump's antics, calling his announcement a "foolish NFT cash grab," according to a report from Vice. "QAnon John," a conspiracy theory influencer, called the NFTs "tone deaf to a VAST MAJORITY of Trump's base."
Despite the widespread criticism and mockery, Trump's die-hard fans still rushed to get their trading cards. The 45,000 NFTs that were initially available are now sold out, with some being traded for more than $8,000.
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