President Trump urged his 66.5 million Twitter followers to vote for Spicer on Monday, calling him a “great and very loyal guy who is working very hard.” As a result, Spicer received low scores from the panel of judges but picked up so many votes from the viewing public that he wasn’t even considered for elimination.
Spicer’s “Dancing with the Stars” survival triggered many critics on social media, and The New York Times even published a story by its in-house dance critic headlined, “No, Sean Spicer really can’t dance.”
The Times called Spicer’s victory over Kate Flannery “outrageous” and criticized the process in which the former Trump spokesperson advanced.
“Spicer’s staying power has little to do with his performances. Over the past eight weeks, he has been the weakest dancer on the show. His low scores from the judges have borne that out,” Times dance guru Gia Kourlas wrote.
Kourlas, who typically covers ballet, called Spicer “untruthful,” because “his soul’s weather” is revealed through dancing.
“He hides behind an egregious smile, parting his teeth to make it look as though he’s been caught mid-laugh. That smile seems meant to distract from his plan of attack: never actually performing a dance, but conquering it,” Kourlas wrote.
Judge Carrie Ann Inaba even told US Weekly that Spicer advancing bothered her.
“There are really great dancers being sent home, but that is part of our show. It’s always been the audience and the judges’ perspective. So I’m not — I can’t be mad at it, but it’s frustrating,” she told the magazine.
“Dancing with the Stars” host Tom Bergeron protested Spicer’s inclusion on the show when it was announced because he wanted to keep politics out of it. It seems Bergeron’s fears have come to fruition and the Gray Lady dance critic isn’t the only person upset that Spicer keeps advancing.
The politically polarizing Spicer caused an uproar on social media:
While some were upset, others came with jokes mocking the outrage:
But Spicer isn't the first contestant to do well despite suspect performance chops. Last year's winner, country radio show host Bobby Bones, admitted during the finale that he was not a finalist due to his stepping skills, but because of his following.
“I’m not here because of my scores,” Bones said. “I’m here because of my people.”