Donald Trump wasn’t told about the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg before speaking at a rally on Friday because aides worried how the crowd would react to the news.
The liberal Supreme Court justice’s death was announced as the President took to the stage in Bemidji, Minnesota but his team opted not to inform him because they were concerned that crowd would cheer.
A new report in The New York Times makes the extraordinary claim and suggests at least some on Trump’s team are still concerned about optics.
“When news broke on Friday that Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg had died, President Trump was just five minutes into a campaign rally in Minnesota and aides opted not to pass word to him onstage,” the NYT‘s Peter Baker reported on Tuesday.
“If he announced the death of the liberal justice from the lectern, they feared the crowd would cheer.”
However, some of those in the crowd did hear the news about Ginsburg’s passing and when Trump started criticizing the Supreme Court in broad terms, some of his supporters tried to tell him about it.
“That’s why the Supreme Court is so important, the next president will get one, two, three, or four justices,” Trump said.
“I had two. Many presidents have had none. They’ve had none. Because they’re there for a long time.”
Some people in the crowd tried shouting the news to the President but to no avail.
Darragh Roche is a journalist covering U.S. politics and media