USA Today was forced to issue a major clarification on Sunday after claiming a Trump campaign t-shirt contained a "Nazi symbol."
The newspaper's fact checking team declared that viral social media posts claiming a Trump campaign t-shirt contained a notorious Nazi symbol — the imperial eagle — was true.
"The claim: Trump campaign shirts feature imperial eagle, a Nazi symbol Our ruling: True," USA Today said on Twitter.
The claim: Trump campaign shirts feature imperial eagle, a Nazi symbol Our ruling: True https://t.co/3eCiYdgQvK— USA TODAY (@USA TODAY)1594549560.0
On its website, the USA Today fact check presented more nuance:
The claims that a Trump campaign T-shirt has come under criticism for using a symbol similar to a Nazi eagle is TRUE, based on our research. But it is worth noting that the eagle is a common symbol in American politics, and is included in the presidential seal of the U.S., as well as many federal departments.
In fact, USA Today explained that the eagle has a rich history in American symbolism and that the image used by the Trump campaign is notably different than the one used by Nazi Germany.
In response, USA Today was rebuked on social media — and many noted the eagle is still a prominent symbol in American government, even used by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
- "Whoa, you mean Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has a Nazi symbol on her official government website?" Daily Wire reporter Ryan Saavedra said.
- "This is moronic. In Democrats' America, Mount Rushmore glorifies white supremacy and the bald eagle with an American flag is a Nazi symbol. They have lost their minds. Better tell the USMC too," another person responded.
- "This is moronic. You aren't a news organization. This is propaganda," another person said.
- "This is legitimate derangement. These people are not well," another person reacted.
- "ps: the American eagle is also a symbol of the United States," another person mocked.
The swift condemnation forced USA Today to issue a "clarification."
"Clarification: The claim that Trump 2020 has put out a T-shirt with a symbol similar to a Nazi eagle and is being criticized for it is true. Worth noting, the eagle is a longtime US symbol, too," the news outlet said.