By Brie Stimson
Published January 18, 2020
Lara Trump, President Trump’s daughter-in-law and a Trump 2020 campaign adviser, fired back at a tabloid report Friday that claimed she mocked former Vice President Joe Biden’s stutter while at a campaign event in Iowa.
“Yet another example of the egregious reporting we see every day in the mainstream media,” the 37-year-old, who is married to the president's son Eric, tweeted, linking to the Daily Mail’s story. “Anyone who takes 10 seconds to watch what I actually said can clearly see that I never mention a stutter — didn’t even know he had one — but they can’t help themselves.”
While at a Women for Trump event Friday, she told the audience she feels “kind of sad for Joe Biden.”
“I'm supposed to want him to fail at every turn, but every time he comes on stage or they turn to him, I'm like, 'Joe, can you get it out? Let's get the words out, Joe!’" she said. "You Kind of feel bad for him. The problem is that's their front-runner, guys!”
After Vox reporter Aaron Rupar posted a video of the moment, also tweeting that she was “mocking” Biden’s stutter, Tim Murtaugh, communications director for the president's reelection campaign, defended her.
“Not what Lara said and Rupar knows it,” he tweeted. “Biden was a terrible candidate the first 2 times he ran for president & he’s no better this time. He doesn’t know what state he’s in half the time & thinks Thatcher is still British PM. Nothing to do w/speech impediment. Just bad candidate.”
Biden has been public about his life-long struggle with stuttering. He sometimes stumbles over his words and discussed the problem at the December debate.
While talking about the campaign trail on the debate stage, Biden imitated a child he met with a stutter saying to him, “I can’t talk.”
Former White House press secretary Sarah Sanders later wrote in a since-deleted tweet, "I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I hhhave absolutely no idea what Biden is talking about,” referring to the debate moment. She followed it with another tweet, clarifying she was not mocking people with speech impediments.
Biden responded, "I’ve worked my whole life to overcome a stutter. And it’s my great honor to mentor kids who have experienced the same. It’s called empathy. Look it up."
Sanders replied, “I actually didn’t know that about you and that is commendable. I apologize and should have made my point respectfully.”