President Trump shared a video late Friday of conservative activist Candace Owens attacking George Floyd, the black man whose racially charged killing has sparked global action.
Mr. Trump boosted the video through his account on Twitter ahead of mass protests taking place across the U.S. and worldwide this weekend in response to Floyd’s killing last month.
“The fact that he has been held up as a martyr sickens me,” Ms. Owens said in the clip Mr. Trump shared. “George Floyd was not a good person. I don’t care who wants to spin that.”
Ms. Owens, 31, first gained attention in 2017 for her vocal support of Mr. Trump. She subsequently joined the Turning Point USA conservative non-profit group, and last year she launched the “Blexit” movement to encourage other African Americans to leave the Democratic Party and register as Republicans.
She made the remarks about Floyd while speaking to fellow conservative commentator and former Fox News host Glenn Beck on The Blaze, a right-wing outlet where they both have programs.
Mr. Beck shared excerpts from his interview with Ms. Owens on Twitter, and Mr. Trump subsequently shared two of those tweets from the president’s account on the platform.
Floyd, 46, was arrested on the evening May 25 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, after being accused of using a counterfeit $20 bill. He died moments later in police custody after being forcefully restrained for several minutes by police officers who have since been fired from the force and charged in connection with his killing.
Protests against systemic racism and police brutality have taken place in the U.S. and worldwide, including organized rallied set to place throughout the country on Saturday.
In the video shared by Mr. Trump, both Mr. Beck and Ms. Owens question if Floyd should be hailed since he had a criminal record and drugs in his system at the time of his death.
“Is this really the guy that black America, I mean, they were very careful to pick Rosa Parks. Is this the symbol of black America today?” Mr. Beck asked in the video.
“I’m going to say yes, it is a symbol of black America today. It is a symbol of a broken culture in black America today and police are not willing to talk about, again, how we contribute to our own demise,” Ms. Owens responded.