WASHINGTON (AP) — After a weekend spent stoking division, President Donald Trump on Monday blasted NASCAR for banning the Confederate flag and wrongly accused the sport’s only Black driver, Bubba Wallace, of perpetrating “a hoax” involving a rope shaped like a noose in his garage.
Exploiting racial tensions, Trump suggested Wallace should apologize after one of his crew members discovered the rope in a garage stall they had been assigned to. Federal authorities ruled last month that the rope had been hanging there since at least last October and was not a hate crime. Wallace has maintained the rope had been fashioned into a noose and has said he was saddened by “the despicable act of racism and hatred,” and other Cup Series drivers rallied around him.
“Has @BubbaWallace apologized to all of those great NASCAR drivers & officials who came to his aid, stood by his side, & were willing to sacrifice everything for him, only to find out that the whole thing was just another HOAX?” Trump tweeted. “That & Flag decision has caused lowest ratings EVER!”