Barack Obama is reportedly not happy with Donald Trump for using the terms “kung flu” and “China virus” to refer to Covid-19. The former president made the comments at a fundraiser.
Obama criticized Trump’s use of the racially charged terms on Thursday. He was raising money for former Vice President Joe Biden’s presidential campaign.
“I don’t want a country in which the president of the United States is actively trying to promote anti-Asian sentiment and thinks it’s funny,” Obama said.
“I don’t want that. That still shocks and pisses me off.”
The New York Times reported that Obama told an aide Trump has “no idea what he’s doing.” This followed a meeting between the two men in 2016.
Obama also tries to avoid mentioning Trump’s name. The Democrat is “so determined to avoid uttering the new president’s name that one aide jokingly suggested they refer to him as ‘He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named’ — Harry Potter’s archenemy, Lord Voldemort.”
Trump has repeatedly referred to Coronavirus as “kung flu” or “China virus.” Early on in the pandemic, the term “Wuhan virus” was popular among the President’s supporters.
Many critics have pointed out that these terms are racist. Trump has defended his use of these unofficial names in the past.
“It’s not racist at all,” Trump has said. “No, not at all. It comes from China, that’s why. It comes from China. I want to be accurate.”
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Darragh Roche is a journalist covering U.S. politics and media