Donald Trump fancies himself as the next Andrew Jackson.
In March, Trump praised the seventh president of the United States for confronting and defying “an arrogant elite,” conventionally leaving out the reasons why Jackson’s stock has sunk among historians in recent years; Jackson, who owned well over 100 slaves and once shot and killed a man for disrespecting his wife (not to mention his role in the Trail of Tears atrocities), is being replaced on the $20 bill by Harriet Tubman.
But Trump is still a fan — he hung a portrait of Old Hickory in the Oval Office after moving into the White House (he’s looking forward to showing it to Melania) — and in an interview with reporter Salena Zito on SiriusXM’s “Main Street Meets the Beltway,” he called Jackson a “very tough person, but he had a big heart.” Trump then made some, let’s say, peculiar comments about how Jackson “really angry… with regard to the Civil War,” despite the alternative fact that the Civil War didn’t start until 1861. Jackson died in 1845.
Here’s what Trump had to say:
“I mean had Andrew Jackson been a little later you wouldn’t have had the Civil War. He was a very tough person, but he had a big heart. He was really angry that he saw what was happening with regard to the Civil War, he said, ‘There’s no reason for this.” People don’t realize, you know, the Civil War, if you think about it, why? People don’t ask that question, but why was there the Civil War? Why could that one not have been worked out?”
“People don’t realize, you know, the Civil War, if you think about it, why?” Really makes you think. At no point did Trump mention the word “slavery,” which is odd. He is best friends with Frederick Douglass, after all.