Secret Service Will Investigate Trump’s Former Butler as Campaign Disavows Statements

The former butler has made numerous violent remarks about the president on his Facebook page.

Rich Schultz/AP

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Earlier today, Mother Jones published a story detailing some extreme and threatening statements about President Barack Obama written by Donald Trump’s former butler Anthony Senecal on his personal Facebook page. The 84-year-old worked as Trump’s butler for 17 years before becoming the in-house historian at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida. In the last year, Senecal has written multiple public posts on Facebook calling for Obama to be killed, with remarks such as, “If that means dragging that ball less dick head from the white mosque and hanging his scrawny ass from the portico–count me in !!!!!”

Threatening the president is a federal crime, and the Secret Service told the Daily Beast in a statement Thursday afternoon that it plans to investigate the butler’s statements. “The U.S. Secret Service is aware of this matter and will conduct the appropriate investigation,” wrote spokesman Robert Hoback in an email to the Daily Beast.

Also on Thursday afternoon, the Trump campaign distanced itself from Senecal’s statements. “Tony Senecal has not worked at Mar-a-Lago for years, but nevertheless we totally and completely disavow the horrible statements made by him regarding the President,” campaign spokeswoman Hope Hicks told CNN.

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You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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