Jared Kushner, a top aide and son-in-law to President Donald Trump, appeared to mock Black Lives Matter activists on Monday, claiming many people who spoke out against George Floyd’s death in May were simply “virtue signaling.”
“Fox & Friends” host Brian Kilmeade asked Kushner about working with rapper Ice Cube ― who has faced backlash for spreading baseless QAnon conspiracy theories on social media ― on the Trump administration’s “Platinum Plan” for Black communities.
“So, look, there’s been a lot of discussion about the issues that were needed in the Black community for the last year, but particularly it intensified after the George Floyd situation,” Kushner said. “And, you know, you saw a lot of people that were just virtue signaling.
“They’d go on Instagram and cry or, you know, they’d put a slogan on their jersey or write something on a basketball court,” he continued, appearing to refer to athletes such as those in the NBA and WNBA who made Black Lives Matter activism a centerpiece of their seasons.
Kushner claimed such activism was “doing more to polarize the country than it was to bring people forward.”
“You solve problems with solutions,” said Kushner, adding that Trump’s policies could help Black people “break out of the problems that they’re complaining about.”
“But he can’t want them to be successful more than they want to be successful,” Kushner said of the president.
Kushner attempted to distance himself from Trump’s birther claim during an interview last year, but refused to acknowledge the claim was racist. (It was.)
During the first 2020 presidential debate, Trump declined to condemn white supremacy and directed the Proud Boys, a violent neo-fascist street gang, to “stand back” and “stand by.” After several days of backlash, he directly condemned white supremacy.
Trump released his two-page Platinum Plan last month, less than two months ahead of Election Day. The plan promises to create 3 million new jobs for Black people and “increase access to capital in Black communities by almost $500 billion.”
Critics have called some of the plan’s proposals symbolic and ineffective, and have questioned the timing of its unveiling as Trump seeks to court Black voters ahead of November.
Trump won 8% of the Black vote in 2016. Recent polling showed his support among Black voters slightly increasing in 2020, particularly among young Black voters.
Watch Kushner’s full appearance on “Fox & Friends” below. His remarks about Black communities begin around the 6-minute mark.