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DNC Unveils Billboards Highlighting Trump’s Disputed Comment Disparaging Milwaukee

Lawmakers who met with Trump claim his remark was directed at election integrity and crime

DNC Unveils Billboards Highlighting Trump’s Disputed Comment Disparaging Milwaukee

The Democratic National Committee (DNC) is launching 10 billboards in Milwaukee after former President Donald Trump’s allegedly called the city “horrible” in a meeting with GOP lawmakers on Thursday.

The billboard reportedly features Trump’s face and the following quote: “Milwaukee, where we are having our convention, is a horrible city” – a reference to the forthcoming Republican National Convention in July.

“[Trump] has made his contempt for Wisconsinites and their home clear,” said DNC spokesperson Addy Toevs, per The Hill. “The dislike is mutual – in 2020, Wisconsin handed Trump a one way ticket back to exile in Mar-a-Lago and sent President Biden to the Oval Office. In November, they’ll do it again.”

Toevs added: “Trump hates Milwaukee because Milwaukeeans know exactly who he is – a sore loser who they’re going to make a two-time loser this November.”

Reports of the disparaging comment appear to stem from an X post from Punchbowl News founder Jake Sherman, who claimed Trump made the remark to House Republicans during a closed-door meeting on Thursday.

However, Republican lawmakers who attended the meeting have either disputed the quote or reframed its context.

“I was in the room. President Trump did not say this,” Rep. Bryan Steil (R-Wis.) said. “There is no better place than Wisconsin in July.”

Rep. Derrick Van Orden (R-Wis.) accused Sherman of “sh---y reporting” that included “lies by omission.”

“Donald Trump was specifically referring to ... the CRIME RATE in Milwaukee,” he wrote.

Van Orden included a screenshot of a June 13 Spectrum News 1 article that reports Milwaukee is one of the top three large cities with the highest violent crime rate. The article cited FBI data reported in SafeHome.org that found the city’s murder rate climbed about 50 percent between 2011 and 2021.

Other lawmakers said Trump was mainly referencing election integrity with him comment.

“I think he kind of lumps all those things together, that there were some real improprieties (with the election) in Wisconsin, and cites Milwaukee as a result of it,” said Rep. Tom Tiffany (R-Wis.).

Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-N.Y.) said Trump was specifically replying to her when he discussed Milwaukee.

“President Trump was responding directly to my question about the lack of ELECTION INTEGRITY by election officials in certain US cities including Milwaukee,” she said. “President Trump made no derogatory remarks about the great citizens and communities in those cities.”

Tenney added: “Much like New Yorkers, Wisconsinites are fed up with violent crime and rampant voter fraud. Democrats know the voters are on our side, so they’re trying to twist President Trump’s words.”

When asked about his alleged comment, Trump said he thought what he meant was “very clear.”

“We’re very concerned with crime,” he said. “I love Milwaukee. I have great friends in Milwaukee. But it’s, as you know, the crime numbers are terrible, and we have to be very careful. But I was referring to also the election.”

Amid conflicting reports over Trump’s remarks, prominent Democrats, including President Joe Biden, waded into the conversation.

“I happen to love Milwaukee,” Biden said. “If you also love Milwaukee the way I do, my team made a shirt for you.”

The president included a link to a t-shirt featuring an outline of Wisconsin and the phrase “(NOT) a Horrible City.”

“Seems like a smart move,” Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough said. “Looking forward to his comments on Detroit and the City of Brotherly Love.”

Milwaukee Mayor Cavalier Johnson said Trump is “wrong about something — yet again.”

“If Donald Trump wants to talk about things that he thinks are horrible, all of us lived through his presidency, so right back at ya, buddy,” he added.

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